8th Grade Newsletter - March 18, 2013

8th Grade Newsletter 8th Grade Newsletter
March 18, 2013
8th Grade News ~ Field Community School
in this issue...

Staff Contacts

Core & Advisory Teachers:

Alison Constant
(Language Arts; Advisory)
(612) 668-7672

Richard Feuling
(612) 668-3640

Tim Jungwirth
(Reading Support; Advisory)
(612) 668-3640

(Math; Advisory)
(612) 668-3640

Ola Lloyd
(Behavior Support; Advisory)
(612) 668-3640

Julie Peterson
(Social Worker; Advisory)
(612) 668-3640

Tracey Schultz
(Science; Advisory)
(612) 668-8602

Linda Slocum
(Social Studies; Advisory)
(612) 668-3640

Mike VanPatten
(Life Skills; Advisory)
(612) 668-3640

Wendy Wolff
(Counselor; Advisory)
(612) 668-3640

Specialists & Support Teachers

Del Bey
(612) 668-3640

Sean Casey
(612) 668-3640

Marni Heck
(612) 668-3640

Kim Hotchkiss
(Band & Orchestra)
(612) 668-3640

Ruth LeMay
(Vocal Music & Guitar)
(612) 668-3640

Char Swanson
(612) 668-3640
Char Swanson

Heather Walker
(612) 668-3640

Administrators and Student Support:

Reggie Johnson
(Assistant Principal)
(612) 668-3640

Terry Mazig
(Parent Liaison)
(612) 668-3640

Steve Norlin-Weaver
(612) 668-3640

Site Council Representatives/PTA:

Dawn Nelson
(Site Council rep)

Mike Wedl
(Site Council rep)

Margaret Miller
(PTA Co-Chair)

Rich Flint
(Site Council community rep)

Quick Links...

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Our next School Dance is this Friday night!
The theme name is Black Out.
Date:Friday, March 22
Where: Field Commons

STUDENT COUNCIL NEWS! This Week is Field School Spirit Week and Friday is the Black out Dance from 6:30-8:30 p.m for all 6-8th graders. We will have a small prize for the most spirit during each lunch next week.
Monday - Ugly Sweater Day
Tuesday- Too Big Clothes Day
Wednesday - Water Day
Thursday - Superhero Day
Friday - Pajama Day

Student Council has chosen clean water as their global issue to raise awareness and money. All proceeds from the dance will go to "Free the Children" clean water projects and Wednesday is "Water day" (wear blue) and we will be selling water during lunches and after school to raise more money for the issue. Below is a video about the world clean water crisis if you would like to learn more. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BCHhwxvQqxg

Please follow the link below to the Field School homepage for important information about High School transportation and the summer Fast Track Scholars program. http://field.mpls.k12.mn.us/

Please Help!! 8th grade teachers are requesting tissues . If you are able to help, please send tissues to Ms. Schultz! Thank you in advance for your help.

Here's what's happening in eighth grade this week...

Language Arts - Ms. Constant

This week we will devote significant time to finishing the analytical essays students started after Part I of TKAM. While we will spend three days in class on the essay, students will need to work on it at home as well. On Monday we will begin drafting body paragraphs from Part II--students should have three solid body paragraphs for Part II by Wednesday. On Wednesday we will work on revising. Students will get the feedback on their earlier paragraphs back from me and use those as a model for how to improve each body paragraph. They will turn their one revise paragraph in to me on Wednesday. They should continue revising others as homework. On Friday we will learn how to write a strong, broad introduction to a literary essay. Final essays are due at the beginning of class on Monday, March 25. They are worth 100 points in the Writing category.

On Tuesday and Thursday of this week we will continue class discussions about the novel, addressing lingering questions students have as well as some that I choose. These will be the last opportunities students have to improve skills in the Speaking and Listening categories.

I have some grades to enter in to the portal today, including late work that was turned in. I will be doing so after school, so tonight would be a great time to check the portal for language arts progress!

Looking ahead, next week we will be comparing and contrasting TKAM in book and movie form. Students must have all missing work from the Reading and Writing categories in by this Friday (March 22) in order to watch the movie.

Linear Algebra (8th Grade Algebra) ~ Mr. Leavitt
Ruba Growth

Hello Field families.

Things are going well with exponential growth. (We haven't looked at decay yet.) I think I'm challenging students who have studied this in Intermediate Algebra. If you're hearing otherwise, please let me know.

One challenge has been to solve the problem represented by the table above. So far, only 3 students have solved it. An yet, on inspection, it seems to be an example of ...

The Total Number of Rubas is identical to the total number of moves in the Tower of Hanoi puzzle. Math is astonishing.

Seth Leavitt

Fun Fact

Fun Fact 26 (from last week)

How many muscles are in a cat's ear? (Human ears have 6 muscles.)
There are 32 muscles in a cat's ear.

Fun Fact 27

What is the normal lifespan of a dragonfly?

Click the link above and take a guess.

Problem of the Week

Polynomial Power

This problem involves (shudder) fractions in Algebra. Try it. It's really fun.

Intermediate Algebra (9th Grade Algebra) ~ Mr. Leavitt & Mr. Feuling
Quadratic Growth

Hello Field families.

One of the weaknesses of school mathematics (in my (Leavitt) "humble" opinion) is that we inadvertently teach students that finding the answer is the most important thing. It isn't. Seeing patterns and making connections and generalizing is really what mathematics is all about. That's why mathematics is such an important study in school. Think about it - seeing patterns, making connections, generalizing. Aren't these the skills we employ in so many situations? I think they are.

Why this lecture now? Because we are studying exponential growth in Linear Algebra. One problem was to look at a series of tables and determine if the growth was exponential, linear, or neither. Every Intermediate Algebra students recognized that the table above was neither exponential nor linear. Bravo. But when asked what sort of growth it was, I got only blank stares. Admittedly, some students know the answers to questions and do not volunteer. So maybe somebody recognized quadratic growth (WHICH WE ARE STUDYING AT THIS VERY MINUTE IN INTERMEDIATE ALGEBRA) but didn't raise their hand to respond. But for sure most students didn't make the connection. Why? I think because of the problem I mentioned above. In this room, at this time, I answer questions in this way. Maybe I'm flattering myself when I think that I am teaching mathematics and not teaching "answer finding". I hope its mathematics but here's some evidence to the contrary. What to do?

Students have learned how to "Complete the Square". As a group, they learned this quickly and well. It's a pleasure to work with your children.

Seth Leavitt and Richard Feuling

Science ~ Ms. Schultz

Science Update -

Mark your planner/calendar - the WEATHER AND WATER end-of-unit test will be Wednesday, March 27th. This will be the last piece of students' third quarter grade. A study guide will be available this Wednesday (3/20) to help students begin preparing.

This week in class we will begin by investigating the relationship between changing air pressure and wind. Then we will learn the distinction between weather and climate, become familiar with air masses and fronts, and learn to read weather maps.

I hope all 8th graders will support the efforts of our student council to raise awareness and funds for an extremely important and relevant global issue - clean water. Students can show their support by buying water from the student council or buying a dance ticket (all proceeds will be donated to clean water projects). Additionally, students can wear blue on Wednesday for "Water Day."

Tracey A. Schultz
8th Grade Science Teacher
Field School, Minneapolis
(612) 668-3640

U.S. History ~ Mr. Kafura

This week we will be wrapping up our Immigration and Industrialization unit. Students will have time Monday to work on their own or with a partner reviewing their notes, materials, and study guides. Tuesday we will be doing a full class review activity.

Wednesday will be the test. It will be open note again, but students will only have the 50 minute period to complete it so they should be reviewing at home (they will not have enough time to look up every answer). There were a number of lower grades last test and I think part of the reason was once students heard they could use their notes they did not review. Please encourage your student to review.

Thursday we will begin our last (and very short) unit on the Progressives centered around student projects. Now that we've spent a great deal of time setting up problems with American society we are going to turn our attention to how Americans attempt to fix them. Thursday I will be giving the students an overview of what the Progressive Era was and introducing the project (students will select one Progressive leader, research them, and create a poster advocating for their placement in the "Progressives Hall of Fame"). Friday students will be in the lab researching their chosen Progressive.

This project grade will not go on this quarter, but will be the first grade I enter for 4th quarter. On a related note, the end of 3rd quarter is rapidly approaching and my cutoff for missing work is the end of the quarter. Check the portal and get any missing work in as soon as possible!

Reader's Workshop ~ Mr. Jungwirth

Good Reading to the Field Community!

This week, the students will continue writing their summary after reading n article about keeping meail messages private. We are focusing on writing about amendments o a law that was written long ago.

This is a huge opportunity for them to independently read text, write a summary, and review how well they used the strategies we have been working on connected to our learning targets.

We were hoping to be able to send you the results of their independent work this week, but it will take until about mid next week before we are ready to have our work graded.

Snow falls again this morning, maybe find a piece of text that makes you think about late winter snows (and how quickly they disappear!)

Tim Jungwirth 612-668-3640

News from Field School Counselor

Fast Track Scholar applications are now available in the office for all eighth grade students! Fast Track Scholars is a summer program for 8th grade students that allows them to take up to FOUR high school classes and earn credit towards their graduation requirements. Fast Track is especially beneficial for:

  • Students who plan to pursue the IB diploma who may not be able to fit in all of their elective, art, health and/or physical education requirements
  • Students who plan to take 4 years of both world language and music courses
  • Students who need extra support in reading, math, science or social studies to help them start High School STRONG!
  • Students who want make positive connections while getting a jumpstart on High School!
Fast Track Scholars will be held at South High school from June 17-July 25, 2013 and classes will be held from 9:00-3:00. Course offerings include algebra, literacy, science engineering, geography, physical education, health, ceramics, drawing, guitar and theater. Classes fill fast so get your applications in early if you are interested.

If you have any questions about Fast Track Scholars, please contact Wendy Wolff at Field School or click on the following link. http://summerschool.mpls.k12.mn.us/fast_track_scholars

Great news! ALC is adding an after school tutoring program starting after spring break! Tutoring will be available for 7/8th graders on Wednesdays April 10, 17, 24 and May 1, 15 and 22 from 2:45 -3:45 p.m in the Art room. There will be a $12 fee for the 6 weeks and we can accept up to 15 students so get your applications in by March 28!

More information is available in the office or contact Wendy Wolff, School Counselor or Karalyn Swanson with Community Education. We are also looking for 7th and 8th grade students who would willing to serve as tutosr for 5th and 6th graders after school on Mondays.

AVID Tip of the Week!

Interested families can find out more about AVID at Field by viewing the information and student created video on our website http://field.mpls.k12.mn.us/AVID2.html Feel free to email me or stop by if you have further questions.

School Social Worker News and Notes

Site Council

Site Council meetings are held the 1st Wednesday of the month from 4:00 - 5:30 and are open to anyone wishing to attend. If you have a topic to discuss you must be on the agenda prior to the meeting. Please contact your grade rep. to be added to the agenda.

phone: 612-668-3640

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This email was sent to seth.leavitt@mpls.k12.mn.us by alison.constant@mpls.k12.mn.us |  

Field School | 4654 Fourth Avenue South | Field PTA | Minneapolis | MN | 55419