February Newsletter for 7B/7M

Happy Chinese New Year!  This month is very busy with speech arts, ski trips, and extracurricular activities.  However, the students are working hard and we are making good progress.

Math:
January was a busy month for the students and our math class was no exception as we learned about integers. The students will start in February by learning about patterns and expressions. They will explore how to describe patterns, variables and expressions, evaluate expressions, and graph linear relations. During classes and tests, students will be regularly solving multi-step word problems to help prepare them for further education as well as develop their critical thinking skills.

Science:

During the month of January, the grade sevens studied the different ways electricity is generated as well as their different environmental impacts. Both classes will complete a couple of labs that will include building a simple electric motor. Since most of our learning will be inquiry-based, the students will be presented with questions that they will need to research critically and make personal connections to. We are striving for the development of higher-order and critical thinking skills in students’ work that is based on research, personal connections, and evidence.

Social Studies:

This month we will be covering the Ancient Greeks from the Bronze Age Collapse until the end of the Classical Era.  Students will be given a number of assignments and a final project to complete.  Recently, I gave the students a homework package to be completed by the end of the unit.  It is quite a large package so it’s not expected that students complete it over a weekend.  Rather, as we move through the history of Ancient Greece students will be able to fill in the information as needed.  Likewise, we are striving in this unit to make students investigators of history rather than simply passive observers.  Students will be required in some assignments to use their ingenuity and critical thinking to solve the outcome of events.

Language Arts:

This month we begin our journey into the world of Beowulf!  Students will work in groups to complete their inquiry into this amazing story, then will perform a different part from the epic tale in front of the class.  Students will learn about different literary devices such as characterization, dialogue, plot, setting etc…. Eventually, students will get to create their own short stories that may also be done in the form of a graphic novel.  Likewise, we will continue to focus on reading comprehension and a number of short reading assignments will be sent home.