“Sometimes joyful learning is no laughing matter!”

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It has been a complete tragedy in sixth grade Humanities these past couple of weeks… well, more of a complete ‘study’ of tragedy, as the classes have been exploring the plot structure of Greek tragedy, and comparing it to William Shakespeare’s Macbeth.

Using the Sophocles’ classic, Oedipus Rex as a starting point, students wrote ‘three paragraph’ comparative essays, focusing on the similarities of plot structure between Oedipus and Macbeth. The students have also been rehearsing scenes from The Tempest, as they gain a deeper understanding of character traits, and theme and moral. These understandings will be demonstrated through the production of a movie trailer, using iMovie.
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Both the comparative essay and movie trailer will help form the sixth graders’ Exhibition of Learning portfolio, which takes place on Wednesday April 2. Other components of the exhibition will include manuscripts of their novels, character analysis’ of their protagonists and antagonists (from their novels), and a complete play analysis of either Macbeth or Oedipus Rex, using Aristotle’s Elements of Tragedy.
Sometimes joyful learning is no laughing matter!
Cow discussion

In our middle school Comic Books and Graphic Novels class, eighth graders have been practicing different techniques for illustrating and writing comic strips. Students have been studying all the different aspects of creating stories, from character development and illustration, panel design, avoiding redundancy, to creating a comic without panels at all! The students are about to embark on a publishing odyssey so that during the Middle School Exhibition of Learning students can have copies of their comic compilations available for the masses!

In the world of our fifth grade STEM math class, students have been continuing the study of parts of a whole, exponents, and square roots. Most recently they have learned how to round decimals, as well as multiply and divide them. The class has mastered the skill of finding equivalency between fractions, decimals, and percents and the proper use of each. Lastly, students have learned how to multiply fractions with challenges of tying exponents, square roots, fractions, decimals, and percents together in complicated equations and word problems.

erosion

In science class this past month the class began a new unit on landforms, weathering and erosion.  Students studied these concepts through many investigations where they looked at soil composition, as well as physically and chemically weathered rocks.  The students froze glass jars to show how cracks in rocks form.  They built their own landscapes and studied different ways they erode. They then put on engineering hats to find ways to control and limit that erosion using examples observed in our everyday world to give them ideas. Lastly, students are learning how streams form by building stream tables and experimenting with what factors increase erosion and deposition.