INSIDE THIS ISSUE... Page 2-3 Fall Festival Info Page 4-19 Classroom Updates Page 12 MMS Gives Back… Page 20-21 Spanish Page 22 Music Page 23 PE Page 24-25 Art Page 26 Technology Page 27 Media/Library Page 28-29 Spotlight Kids Page 30 Spirit Week Page 31 Accreditation Page 32 Calendar
QUARTERLY NEWSLETTER FROM MILLHOPPER MONTESSORI SCHOOL
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The Importance of the Preschool and Kindergarten Years BY CHRISTINA MILLER From birth to age six, children undergo five unique sensitive periods for learning. During these periods, they have absorbent minds where knowledge effortlessly enters like water into a sponge. During these sensitive periods, information enters the child’s subconscious mind and later spontaneously emerges in his/ her conscious mind when he/she learns by discovery. After age six, learning becomes different and requires not only a different strategy but also a different level of conscious effort. The five sensitive periods are: 1. Social relationships and skills 2. Sensitive period for order 3. Senses refining 4. Language 5. Movement. The standard approach to preschool and kindergarten education these days is top down. A top down approach asks what students need to learn in kindergarten to be prepared for first grade, which is far different from a ground up developmental approach that understands and acknowledges the sensitive periods from birth to age 6, and nurtures them as they arise naturally. In a ground up approach, a preschool or kindergarten program would be a natural extension of what children are ready to learn when they enter that level. Pre-school aged children are not required to be in school and, for the most part, the opportunity of providing a developmentally appropriate learning environment for all 4-year-olds has been missed. In recent years, however, preparing children for kindergarten has been garnering more support from the standpoint of “readiness” or top down. The Florida Department of Education (DOE) is responsible for creating performance standards, recommending curricula, providing professional development and educational accountability requirements. Through the Voluntary Pre-Kindergarten program (VPK), private providers are permitted to design their own curriculum as long as it meets the Pre-K performance standards to prepare students for the statewide kindergarten screening. This is another example of a top down approach. The pre-school and kindergarten years are the most formative and learning is specialized through the sensitive periods. A developmentally appropriate program honors and appreciates how children at this age learn. Children are busy with the task of creating their conscious minds. Through the sensitive periods, they absorb information like a sponge. Only when an individual is ready can the point of consciousness occur. It can’t be forced, predicted or hurried. Expectations of teachers and curriculum restraints should never over or underestimate the ability of children during these sensitive periods The pre-school and kindergarten years are the most formative and learning is specialized through the sensitive periods. A ground up developmentally appropriate program honors and appreciates how children at this age learn.
Beginners : Ages 2 to 4 Ms. Crystal Sorrow ~ Ms. Ursula Hagood ~ Ms. Kyra Akay
Pictured Below: Students exploring nutrition work.
October is always a fantastic month with Parent Night, Fall Festival, Halloween celebrations, and new work. This monthâ€™s unit study of tools is always one of my favorites to present and to observe the students engagement. Finger dexterity is so critical for activities and challenges in life. Writing, typing, dressing, playing, learning instruments, and so many other life activities require finger strength and agility. Learning clockwise and counter clockwise rotation, the difference between plain and Phillips screws and screwdrivers, sanding wood, hammering, and using a measuring tape, polysquare, and level all provide new ways for the young student to measure, observe, and create in their world. Carpentry uses math and geometry knowledge coupled with gross and fine-motor skills to produce functional pieces and artistic renderings. Working with wood connects the young students with nature, something that is becoming rare. The tools are fascinating to the young child and the size of tools provided are appropriate for their hand size and strength. October work also has Halloween inspired activities with pumpkin number matching, pumpkin size discrimination, masks to try on, and practical life activities with black, orange, and purple objects. In November, the Little House will be learning about trees and leaves, which will be a nice extension to our tool and carpentry unit. The photos included are from our September nutrition unit in which the students learned fruit and vegetable identification and how sleep, nutrition, and exercise are important to our total well-being.
Preschool : Ages 3 to 5 Ms. Christina Eckstein ~ Ms. Lily Tajalli We have had an incredible start to the school year! The grace and courtesy lessons that the students have received have set the tone for a peaceful and respectful classroom. The children are finding great joy and satisfaction from the work they choose to do during the work cycle time and are developing a deeper level of concentration which allows them to do more challenging and extensive work. Our second year preschool students have been particularly outstanding this year in terms of being good role models and being helpful towards the new students in our classroom. One of our first areas of study this year was The Five Senses. Many of the Montessori sensorial lessons were presented during this time. Depending on the student’s visual discrimination capabilities, they are given lessons on size, form, and color in large and small group settings. Works were also presented dealing with the tactile, auditory and olfactory senses. Students used their sense of touch to match fabrics, sort rough and smooth objects, and identified items in a mystery bag. The child’s sense of hearing was engaged as they differentiated between objects that produced sound and others that did not in our “Sound/No Sound” basket, and matched identical sounds in the Sound Cylinder work. The children also loved using their sense of smell to match fragrances. The many food preparation activities that the students will encounter this year will engage their gustatory sense. Doing a work on the gradation of colors.
Students working on matching fragrances.
During the month of September, the students learned a great deal about the human body. They identified exterior body parts through movement activities, matched labels to cards, and created their very own body books. The students identified bones and constructed a human skeleton using different types of pasta and beans. They also discovered the parts of the circulatory, digestive and nervous systems as they examined various models and worked with our “anatomy apron” work. The children also discussed daily needs that the human body has such as rest, exercise, and eating healthy foods.
Identifying bones of the human skeleton.
Learning how to identify organs on the anatomy apron.
Making and eating veggie cheese people!
Preschool : Ages 3 to 5 Ms. Martha Dolan ~ Ms. Christina Wegner
Learning how to lay out a work.
Locating the heart.
We have had a great start to the year in our classroom. During August we first concentrated on establishing routines and learning Grace and Courtesy lessons: raising our hand, using a quiet voice in the classroom, walking in the classroom, how to carry a tray, and unrolling and rolling rugs. Most importantly we worked on how to lay a work out correctly. Our unit study for August was mapping parts of the body and doing activities about our five senses. The children did their own five senses matching and Show and Tell reinforced their understanding of their senses. In September, the children worked on our unit study of the “Human Body”. We focused on human heart facts. The children learned that the heart is one of the most important organs in the human body and it continuously pumps blood around our body through blood vessels. They learned that the heart is located in your chest and is well protected by your rib cage. The children learned the importance of healthy foods, exercise and rest. The children have been using the food pyramid works to discover the healthy foods and how many your body needs to stay healthy. We concluded our unit study with grafting and tasting our favorite apples. The children painted their own interpretation of the Post-Impressionist French painter Paul Cézanne. They painted a still life with fruit on a plate. They enjoyed seeing their work displayed when it was finished.
Placing the apples on the graph sheet.
Mizuki painting his fruit plate picture.
Some of the girls tasting apples.
Preschool/Kindergarten Ms. Renee Brohamer ~ Ms. Kathleen Bastien Time is passing so quickly, weâ€™ve been very busy since school started! Hopefully your children have been sharing with you at home the amazing things they are learning about. Throughout the first month we spent time learning about nutrition and exercise and how important these are in order to stay healthy and strong. The children were introduced to the food pyramid and learned of the healthy benefits from each group. They also learned how important it is to eat a variety of foods from all of the groups every day. In addition to learning about exercise and nutrition we are also learned about our bodies and how they work. We began the unit with how we use our bodies to learn about the world around us. The children learned that the nervous system and the brain work together through our five senses to understand the things around us. We also have an anatomy model in the classroom for the children to assemble and disassemble and the children have been introduced to each of the different organs and their jobs. In October, we will be discussing what kinds of jobs people do. We are excited to welcome some parents in to class to share their professions with the class. Check out our pictures from the last few weeks!
May Lee and Lily pin pushing healthy food.
Having fun exercising!
Kadar mixing colors.
Itâ€™s a very busy classroom!
Pictured: (Bottom Left) A child planting lima beans. (Bottom Middle) Working on some math with the bead chains. (Bottom Right) Ms. Elizabeth demonstrating a volcanic eruption. (Upper Left)
Preschool/Kindergarten Ms. Elizabeth Falls ~ Ms. Jessica Pytko We have had a great start to what promises to be another great year! With beginning evaluations complete and the children becoming more comfortable in the classroom, new lessons are being added daily. Classroom lessons have included activities in the following areas: Practical Life: pouring, spooning, hand washing, sewing, and shoe tying. Sensorial: color sorting, Geometric Shapes, Knobbed and Knobless Cylinders, Bi- and Trinomial Cubes as well as the Pink Tower and Brown Stair. Math: Some of the students have been presented with lessons on such works as one-to-one (0-9) correspondence, Number Rods, Teens Board, while others can be seen working on the Hundred Board; concepts of Addition, Multiplication and Subtraction (using counters and the Golden Beads); and the Bead Chains. Language: Push-pinning continues to be a favorite activity in the classroom! Lessons on beginning, end and middle letter sounds; decoding and blending letter sounds; and letter and number writing (D’Nealian style) are ongoing. Some of our Kindergarten students have started “inventive” writing in their journals. During Story Time we are currently reading Charlotte’s Web by E.B. White. Science: Our first unit study focused on “Down on the Farm”. The children learned not only about farm animals but also the different kinds of crops that are grown on a farm. We also discussed good nutrition and what foods make up the Food Pyramid. This unit study led us into our current Botany study on Seeds and Plants. The children are learning about the parts of a seed. Each child was given two Lima Bean seeds to sprout in hopes that one would be able to be planted; and to be able to watch it grow into a Lima Bean plant. The children have planted their seed(s) in soil and are now anxiously waiting to see a plant grow.
We are also studying the “Layers of the Earth, Rocks and Minerals”; a favorite unit study among the children! The children made a model showing the four layers of Earth to take home. The children also witnessed a volcanic eruption in class! They loved this activity and asked to see the volcano erupt many times! We are now studying the different types of rocks: Igneous, Metamorphic and Sedimentary. Our next unit study will focus on Dinosaurs. Geography: The children started the year by learning their “Cosmic Address”. Our next geography study will be on the continent of Asia. Future unit studies: Bats, Spiders and Harvest Time Art: marble rolling, marble rolling mixed with push-pinning; Q-tip painting, easel painting, making paper mache apple pencil holders, sandpaper/crayon printing and burlap sewing. On September 26th, we celebrated both the beginning of my favorite season, Fall and Johnny Appleseed’s birthday. This was also the children’s first cooking experience, baking two, homemade apple pies! They thoroughly enjoyed slicing the apples, mixing the ingredients and the best part; being able to eat their pie with ice cream – Yummy! Future cooking will include foods for the holidays and foods from different geographic regions. The children are excited about our first Parent Night, Tuesday, October 8th and the MMS Fall Festival, Thursday, October 24th.
First & Second Grades Ms. Anita Bender ~ Ms. Susie Long Spirit Week kicked off the start to a terrific school year; children dressing as pirates and wearing mismatched clothes brought many smiles and laughs. This event brings teamwork, energy and excitement into the classroom early in the school year. Dr. Montessori asserts that during the ages 6 through 9 are a sensitive period for the child’s imagination. Through real experiences a child finds their place in the world. We are always amazed to see how well a new group of incoming 6-9 year olds adapt to Montessori elementary. Maria Montessori calls this age grouping the second plane of development, the age of discovery. We see a child’s physical growth make leaps but even more amazing is their capacity for mental growth. The Montessori elementary curriculum was created with this in mind. It is designed to take advantage of the child’s natural enthusiasm for learning and lays the foundation for skills needed at the next level (9-12 yrs.). Children in the second plane of development tend to give up parallel play and gravitate towards others in their environment. They lose their desire for physical order and develop a strong moral sense of order. They have a very strong sense of justice and perceived fairness. Around the age of 6, children become interested in their classmates and in learning how to get along. Following rules becomes very important. They start to choose to work with others on projects of mutual interest. The multi-age component allows older children to become class role models and peer teachers. They grasp at opportunities to teach a lesson and become an expert, and here deeply internalized learning occurs. The Montessori Curriculum offers experiences with specific purpose that allow for a child’s contribution. This became obvious during our school Spirit Week events in September. The children’s enthusiasm, parent support and desire to reach out and help our community made our “Food Drive” a huge success. Our children gathered 386 food items to take to our community food pantry. In all, the elementary and middle school students raised over 1000 dry goods to donate. We congratulate the efforts of all classrooms and appreciate the honor of having earned the “Golden Can Award” for the class collecting the most food items during this event. Starting in the elementary classroom we tell of the five Great Montessori Lessons. This year, Mr. Richard and Ms. Anita collaborated on the first of the Great Lessons, “Earth and Its Beginnings”. We told the story in a darkly lit room where at first there is nothing and gradually through space and time emerge the sun and planets, as land forms, heating and cooling take place before we have Earth. As this epic story is read, we reveal several physical science experiments; a few pops of confetti filled balloons, mixing of heated and cooled objects, different states of matter and an exploding vinegar and baking soda filled volcano with a lit sparkler dramatize life’s beginning.
These lessons add a spark to the elementary student’s imaginative mind, initiating exploration into the curriculum. The visual cues draw on material from various disciplines. When they hear stories of greatness, goodness and moral values, the elementary children concern themselves with their developing conscience. Without contributions to the whole, we could not survive. With loving, respectful and understanding guidance from teachers, parents and other adults in their lives, children gain knowledge of what it takes to manage and take ownership of their lives. This includes the responsibility of caring for themselves and others, executing tasks, taking care of the classroom environment and chores at home to name a few. I am excited by our next community service effort. We will be making teddy bears for the local children’s hospital emergency rooms. These handmade gifts will be a warm token for children entering the emergency room and a gift of goodwill and purpose, hand-sewn with love from our MMS children. As we learn to care for ourselves, we are talking about healthy and nutritious choices; eating “green light” food, getting plenty of sleep and practicing good hygiene. As we learn to care for others, we learn about taking responsibility for chores. Children love to tell about their experiences and share knowledge. The more they do for themselves the better experts they become. Parent support is crucial in this step, making sure your child takes part in packing up his or her own lunch and carrying and returning homework and books independently. It is helpful having a job list or calendar of daily chores posted. This age is the best time for promoting self-awareness and independence. Allow room for children to make mistakes, it will help them grow. We encourage questions, predictions, estimations, seeking out knowledge and finding interests at this developmental milestone. We guide the child through the process of growth. We are happy to begin sharing in many wonderful events this first quarter; Fall Festival is around the corner. It is a fun event and we look forward to everybody taking part to make it great. Thanks for donations of time and resources to our classroom! We appreciate that we have such a supportive group of families. We feel fortunate to guide your children this year and are excited about the many opportunities we will share. Ms. Anita and Ms. Susie
Ms. Anita guiding some students in a division lesson.
Ms. Susie guiding a student sewing a placement for lunch.
MMS Gives Back...
This year MMS Elementary and Middle School Students were encouraged to give back to our community through a canned food drive during Spirit Week. Each classroom competed to win â€œThe Golden Can Awardâ€? by bringing in the most cans to be donated to Bread of the Might Food Bank. The outcome was wonderful! On September 27, the Second Graders took a field trip to Bread of the Mighty to donate all of the food raised throughout the week. MMS raised 775 lbs of food to donate! This equals out to be 596 meals, which would feed four families of four, three times a day, for four days. We are so proud of our students in the Elementary and Middle School and especially our Second Grade who donated their time to deliver the food!
Second & Third Grades Mr. Richard Aslanian ~ Ms. Suzi Rumsey Welcome to the second and third grades class. We are off and running with the new school year and are happy to report that we are doing well, working hard and learning many new things. During the first week of school we experienced the Montessori Great Lesson on the creation of the universe and space. This lesson encompasses a large amount of impressionistic materials that open the studentsâ€™ minds to what possibly may have happened in the beginning. This led to lessons of the formation of earth, plate tectonics, the Montessori Timeline of Life and the 6 Kingdoms of Life on earth. We really enjoyed having Mr. Brian Farina (DJâ€™s dad) come in and give us a presentation on bacteria. We were happily grossed out at the pictures of bacteria found on items in our classroom. We will be continuing our march on the development of life on earth as we investigate invertebrates and vertebrates in detail. We will practice the scientific classification of these forms of life as well. In Social studies and history we have been practicing our mapping skills, working with longitude and latitude, legends, continents, the oceans and learning about the seasons. We have all practiced our phone numbers and addresses and have talked about the importance of this information. We are looking forward to our presentation of a Historical Timeline at the end of October. Each student has received a person of importance from history and will be portraying this person during a school wide presentation. Our studies will also introduce early humans and lead us into ancient civilizations. We will then spend some time learning about ancient Greece, Rome, China and Egypt. Participating in Spirit Week was once again an enjoyable learning experience. Many thoughts and lessons come out of this week, with the conclusion being about school pride and our Millhopper Family helping the community to be a better place. Thanks to all of the families for your support of our activities. We are looking forward to another fun filled evening at the Fall Festival!
Mr. Richardâ€™s Class showing spirit during Pirate Day.
Working on the class poster for Spirit Week. (Pictured Left)
Fourth & Fifth Grades Ms. Christina Miller ~ Ms. Susan Salvatore ~ Ms. Erin Sorel The fourth and fifth grade class saw many exciting events and lessons during August and September. We had a great time participating in Spirit Week, and creating our cheer and poster around the theme “Help!” since as Upper Elementary students, we can serve as helpers to our school community.
Creating our Spirit Week Poster.
The fourth graders have been adjusting to life in fourth grade. We continue to work with them on learning routines such as turning in homework in the morning, checking JupiterGrades daily, and transitioning from one class to another in an efficient manner. Fifth graders are thrilled to finally be Safety Patrollers and are having a wonderful time getting to know and giving high fives to all of the younger students.
Showing off their outfits on Mismatch Day.
In Florida History class, students learned about various types of social scientists and practiced asking the types of questions that social scientists do. We pretended to be social scientists of the future and examined several artifacts from our 2013 culture. Then students had an overview of the five regions of the United States, and reviewed basic Geography concepts such as latitude and longitude and the cardinal and intermediate directions. Soon we will begin our unit on Florida’s history beginning with an in-depth study of the Native Americans of early Florida.
In fifth grade US History with Ms. Susan, students reviewed basic geographical terms and physical features of the US. Then they learned about Native Americans of the United States, the regions in which each tribe lived, and how they adapted to their environments.
Performing our Spirit Week Cheer.
In Spanish class with Ms. Erin, students have started working with the Bienvenidos textbook. Fourth graders have been reviewing basic topics such as greetings, numbers, the weather, and are beginning to tell time in Spanish. Students have created and presented several skits related to these topics. Fifth graders have been reviewing the verbs and conjugations they learned last year, and adding some new verbs and verb forms to their vocabulary. We will soon learn about the Mexican holiday DĂa de los Muertos, and try out some Mexican crafts.
Fourth graders in a geography lesson with Ms. Erin.
We would like to thank all of the fourth and fifth grade families for their help in collecting over 300 cans during Spirit Week, and for volunteering to drive or chaperone on our Appleton Museum field trip. As always, we appreciate your support!
Literature: Fourth & Fifth Grades Ms. Jennifer Kuntz
Pictured: Fifth graders working on and playing their Egyptian games.
The fourth graders began the year by preparing and presenting a “Book in a Box” project for one of the books they read over the summer. For the project, they decorated a shoe box or similar to represent their novel of choice, and chose eight objects important to the story to be included. It was interesting to see what parts of the books resonated with the students – often the same book inspired entirely different choices of objects. Next, the fourth graders will be exploring the power of words and word choice. Just like the protagonist in our novel Frindle by Andrew Clements, the students will be inventing their own word. They will then put together a brochure to try and convince others to use it, too. We’ll also be exploring how to make writing more interesting with details and strong word choice. For the fifth graders, this first quarter is all about Ancient Egypt! Their summer project was creating a game based on their summer book, The Red Pyramid by Rick Riordan. Our current novel is The Egypt Game by Zilpha Keatley Snyder, a mystery involving children who become fascinated with Egypt. We, too, will be learning all about Ancient Egypt, culminating in a “museum” of artifacts created by the students based on their research.
Speech/Drama/Debate Ms. Sylvia Aslanian ~ Ms. Liz Bublitz All students grade one through eight learn how to prepare for a public presentation in the Speech unit of Speech/Drama/Debate. First the students discuss and demonstrate how to properly stand, project, and speak clearly. They learn they must have an opening and a closing to their speech and that it must be practiced. Each class, the students warm up with diction exercises that help them project and annunciate. Peer evaluations help each speaker improve with each speech. Students in first, second and third grade start their presentations by reading entries from their classroom journal. This is about a five week process as they carefully practice reading one of their journal prompts and prepare for each weekâ€™s presentation. Currently the students in the First/Second Grade Class are working on a duet presentation of a nursery rhyme. This will include memorization of the piece as well as adhering to the presentation guidelines. The Second/Third Grade students are working on writing a Favorite Things Speech using a worksheet. Fourth/Fifth Graders are working on a similar speech using a Speech Builder and a Rubric to guide them. Middle School recently delivered a News Show style piece of events and lessons going on in their current classes. These were partner speeches. They are currently working on a Demonstration Speech. Be sure to check JupiterGrades for all the lessons and homework.
Students giving presentations to their classmates during Speech.
Spirit Week– M3S Together U-Knight-ed
Sixth, Seventh & Eighth Grades Ms. Sherilyn Farris ~ Ms. Susan Hansen~ Mr. Samora Rugumamu 6th Grade: Ancient World History - Sumerians, Mesopotamians, & Egyptians. Oh My!
M3S had a great week, celebrating our “Knighthood” and working together.
The sixth grade Ancient World History class started the school year studying the cave art of Lascaux, France and the various roles of “History Detectives”, such as Archeologists, Historians and Geographers. We recreated a cave-like environment, which the sixth graders “excavated” to learn about the tools necessary to investigate the past. They studied the roles of these experts as they learned about the beautiful cave drawing found in the Lascaux Cave. The drawings date back to 17,000 years ago!
Big thanks to all the M3S students and their great ideas for the week’s theme: “Uknighted” (thanks Gibby!).
Next, the class will study about the aspects that make up a civilization, the earliest city-states of the Fertile Crescent, and 3 important periods in Ancient Egypt. They’ll reenacted the major accomplishments of the Akkadians, Babylonians, Assyrian, and Neo-Babylonian Empires and “sail” down the Nile River in a felucca touring historical sites along the way; such as the White Temple at Karnack, commissioned by the Egyptian Pharaoh Senusret I and Abu Simbel, commissioned by the Egyptian Pharaoh Ramses II.
“Thank you!” to Ms. Susan H and the poster committee for a beautiful class poster! “Thank you!” to our cheer committee for an awesome cheer, catchy lyrics, and cool choreography! “Thank you!” to all the students and parents who brought in canned goods!
7th & 8th Grade: World Cultures & Geography - Nī hăo! “Nī hăo!” That means “Hello!” in Chinese. The 7th and 8th grade students are learning about the Asian continent with an emphasis on China and Japan. The Asian unit will be done “scrapbook” style. Each student will create an informative and creative scrapbook for each lesson we cover. Currently, we finished studying about the monsoon season in India and Bangladesh. We’ll begin studying the geography of mainland China with an emphasis on the fertile North China Plain. Then we’ll travel to Liu Ling Village at the beginning of the People’s Republic of China in 1962. Each student will keep a one-week journal of all they see in the village. From there we’ll travel to Hong Kong to see how a modern Chinese family lives and how various events such as births, marriages, and funerals play a role in the traditions of daily life. Next, it’s onto the island country of Japan. I’m sure they’ll be surprised how such a small country is home to such a large population of people. That would be like fitting the whole class on top of one tiny desk (which we’ll try!!) What a tight squeeze! After studying the geography of the island, we’ll discuss the country’s importance on importing agricultural products and exporting electronics and automobiles. The class will compare education in Japan to education in the United States. There are some similarities but also some differences. Coming Next….Europe!
Spirit Week in full swing with Pirate Day!
Happy Birthday! July Charlie M. Maxx A. Ross D. September Alex K. & Eileen K. Brian B. October Arianna H. Ava B. Caryss B. November Esteban S-P. Lydia B. Just a reminder… Study Hall is available to all M3S students MondayThursday from 3:30 to 4:30 PM (but Ms. Sherilyn usually allows them to work until 5 PM). M3S students can use the time to work on assignments and ask for help.
M3S Language Arts Language Arts in the Middle School actually consists of four closely related subjects that are combined for one grade. These subjects are literature, composition, grammar and vocabulary. Students meet for vocabulary every morning before community meeting. Each week they study twenty new vocabulary words and are tested on synonyms and spelling. The students are also encouraged (and sometimes even required) to use these new words in their writing. Grammar Monday is how students start each week. Usually students are given a comprehensive assignment that encompasses grammar, literature and composition skills to complete by the end of the week. Specific skills are also focused on, including: parts of speech, sentence structure, and punctuation rules. Class time the rest of the week is split between literature and composition. Currently, all of the middle school students are studying a variety of aspects of creative writing. Sixth graders are learning how to read, understand and write their own poetry. Seventh and eighth graders are studying literary elements and applying these skills as they write their own short stories. There are a variety of exciting units planned for the school year. This year middle school students will not only continue their annual in-depth study of William Shakespeare but will also present the sixth annual Shakespeare Festival in February. All of the students will complete research papers about topics related to history. While the seventh and eighth graders sharpen their skills for argument writing, sixth graders will be learning the basics of journalism. At the end of the year, students will put together the bi-annual literary magazine The Gallery. It's going to be a great year for the literary arts! M3S Science Life science is the focus for this year's 7th/8th graders. The students have finished an exploration into the characteristics of living things. Currently we're examining the structure and function of cells. 6th graders are learning the basics of Earth Science. We've investigated the Earth's core and now we're examining the Earth's rocks and minerals. All middle school students are already preparing for the Science Fair! Several interesting topics are being covered and everyone is excited about seeing the finished products! Up Coming M3S Events 11/5-7 ROPES 12/16 M3S Spelling Bee: We will use the Vocabulary Workshop book for the Spelling Bee 12/18 M3S Science Fair M3S Students working hard on the porch. (Right) Exploring the caves they “excavated” during History. (Far Right)
Spanish: Beginners-Third Grade Sra. Maria Valladares To set the stage for each Spanish class, the students recite a 'salutation song' continued with drills of vocabulary and the numbers; all accompanied by the proper sign. This will encourage the students not to think English to Spanish, but visualize the word and say it in Spanish. We are constructing a story about how turtles, birds and butterflies go up or down, get big or little, go fast or slow when kittens or puppies pursue them. The class is very interactive. Our next song is the Spanish rendition of â€œTwinkle, Twinkle Little Star.â€? In the second week, the 1st through 3rd graders were given an introduction to a story about a little boat in a BIG ocean. The story was also accompanied by a song. This lesson was comprised of their personal illustration of a boat on the crest of a wave, while ocean creatures swam all around. From their illustrations, I constructed the vocabulary words. They were given the opportunity to actually taste canned octopus on a cracker! Another project, for this grade level, is making a 'passport' booklet with lots of personal information. There's a different page for each piece of information. The students will know how to say their name, age, color of eyes, color of hair, their favorite color, favorite dessert, and the month of the year they were born. The goal is to be able to say this in complete Spanish sentences. This lesson is ongoing as the students acquire more vocabulary. A dialogue is continually being built with questions such as; "How are you?, What is your name?, How old are you?", etc. as the students pretend to be in the playground and they run into each other. They are learning to ask and answer in complete sentences. They know various answers to the set of questions. Now we are working on the Spanish alphabet with their personal illustration of a word that goes with the letter as well as the sign for it. By Veteran's Day, I am planning on teaching the Pledge of Allegiance to the American flag in Spanish.
Trying octopus for the first time!
Sra. Maria sharing octopus with the class.
Spanish: Sixth-Eighth Grades Sra. Karina Newman
The school year has had a good start for middle school Spanish. This year, 6 th, 7th and 8th grade students are taking Spanish separately, which allows a better organization of the curriculum according to each Spanish level. The 6th graders have been studying Unit 1, Estados Unidos, ¿Qué te gusta hacer? They have practiced the uses of the verb “ser” (“to be”), and the expressions “Me gusta” and “No me gusta”. They have done several skits during class time where students have told their classmates about who they are and where they come from. Also, they have discussed their likes and dislikes. As part of this unit, they are doing a Web Quest in which they pretend to be middle school students who are traveling to Spain for a student exchange. They have to choose a Spanish city where the middle school is, then they have to describe in Spanish the new friends they have made. The seven graders have been studying Unit 4, España, ¿Qué hacemos esta noche?. They have been learning about describing places and events in town, talking about different types of transportation, saying what they are going to do, and ordering from a menu. As part of the unit, they are doing a City Guide for Spain where they have to describe different events going on around the city at museums, theaters, parks, and restaurants. The 8th graders have been studying Unit 6, República Dominicana, ¿Cúal es tu deporte favorito? Students have studied the Dominican Republic, and its most important sport, baseball. They have learned specific vocabulary related to the different sport disciplines, the items they need in order to practice a specific sport, and about famous Hispanic athletes. As part of this unit students did a project about their favorite sport, “Mi Deporte Favorito”. Students had to do a Power Point presentation in Spanish where they described their favorite sport and a Hispanic athlete that practices the same sport. Hasta luego, Sra. Karina Newman.
Ms. Liz Bublitz This fall all our music classes have started off with fun, challenging songs and creative movements. Ms. Crystal's class is learning the basics of steady beats, and exploring their high and low voice range while remembering to smile for their audience with the help of fun new original songs. Ms. Martha and Ms. Christina's classes are learning many of the same concepts with more focus and concentration on rhythmical precision and accuracy. Through much hard work and concentration they have had success, tapping, patting and clapping in time. They can also accurately control their voices to sing at different dynamic levels. Later in the year they will learn the correct terminology for dynamics and musical instruments. Kindergarten through eighth grade students have been working diligently on their winter programs. Ms. Renee and Ms. Liz's classes will be performing "Jingle All the Way". They are excited and eager to perform and are learning the words and movement at a promising rate. During these classes they're learning important performing techniques such as singing as a choir, using proper vowels, and singing and watching the director for important cues.
Ms. Anita and Mr. Richard's classes are performing "Twinkle and Shine", a fun show where various animals, elves and reindeer are in search for the star that will light the top of this years living Christmas tree. Second through fourth graders auditioned for parts and solos and were very well prepared. They are learning songs of different genres such as New Orleans Big Band and even some Rap! Ms. Christina and Ms. Sherilyn's classes are working on the production "Lights! Camera! Christmas!" This show explores different movie genres through accompanying songs and also introduces a few familiar film directors along the way. Each class has already auditioned for solos and parts and have learned a few songs. This fall is sure to bring lots of fun and catchy melodies to your children and hopefully even into your homes!
Coach Cam Parker The weather is still quite warm and the students are playing hard like they are still on summer vacation. During the first few weeks of the year the focus is on team building activities so students get used to their new classmates and groupings. Our first unit of the year is throwing and catching, with a mild digression for the silliness that was Spirit Week. We are excited for a few new units coming soon, including a couple of weeks with Frisbees to cap off the throwing and catching unit. The field will be filled with Frisbee golf! Sports League Go Knights! In quite the anomaly, we were unable to field any flag football teams in the community sports league. However, we have a collection of 4th and 5th graders participating in the 5th and 6th grade division in volleyball at the Girlâ€™s Place. (Yes, you read that correctly.) This group has played together for a couple of years now and are up to the challenge. Go check them out on a Saturday!
Ms. Tinaâ€™s Class plays Tic-Tac-Tarp (upper right) Middle School plays a throwing accuracy game. (upper left) Kindergarten starts the year with some duck-duck-goose. (lower left)
Art Ms. Branislava Lakic-McLeod Our first few art classes were nothing but a great experience for me as an art teacher. I am very grateful for this opportunity to teach such a wonderful group of students. Their interest, attitude and participation are great. There is plenty of talent and creativity! Ms. Branislava (Brani) Ms. Anita’s class (1st and 2nd grade) ERIC CARLE / CATERPILLAR - COLLAGE We created our collages inspired by Eric Carle, a popular children's book author and illustrator who is most famous for his book The Very Hungry Caterpillar. Children like to describe Eric Carle as “picture-writer” because of his very distinctive and instantly recognizable art. He creates his book illustrations by using hand painted paper which he cuts and layers to form bright and colorful images. Our students used crayons and oil pastels to color their paper first, and they had a lot of fun cutting shapes and gluing pieces to make their own beautiful caterpillars. Once we finished our projects we discussed how we used lines, shapes, space, color and applied texture in our works of art. Mr. Richard’s class (2nd and 3rd grade) HENRI ROUSSEAU / JUNGLE SUNSET - COLLAGE Students learned about Henri Rousseau through the Power Point presentation. Henri Rousseau was born in Laval, France and most of his best known paintings depict jungle scenes, even though he never left France or saw a jungle. He heard many stories about jungles and used his imagination to create his wonderful paintings. Rousseau claimed he had "no teacher other than nature“ We saw and analyzed many of his jungle paintings and we chose the “Jungle Sunset” for our collage project. Our students used crayons and oil pastels to color their paper first, and then they started cutting pieces of paper for their jungle plants and flowers. We talked about light and shadows in the jungle and light and dark areas in our pictures too. We used warm, bright colors for flowers, just like Henri Rousseau did.
Ms. Christina’s class (4th and 5th grade) AUSTRALIAN ABORIGINAL ART DRAWING / MARKERS We watched a Power Point presentation about thousands of years old paintings found primarily in the shallow caves and rock shelters of northern Australia. The "X-ray" tradition in Aboriginal art depicts animals or human figures in which the internal organs and bone structures are clearly visible. Our students used pencils to draw an animal of their choice in the “x-ray” style and they are still working on decorating the space around animals with intricate patterns and combinations of colors. Ms. Sherilyn’s class (6th, 7th and 8th grade) VALUE PROJECT / SPHERE DRAWING / PENCIL Students learned about value as the range of lightness and darkness within a picture. Value is created by a light source that shines on an object creating highlights and shadows. We discussed light values, dark values, as well as contrast. We created a value scale first, showing the gradual change in value from its lightest value, white to its darkest value, black. We applied those values in our works to create an illusion of depth within our picture by turning a simple circle into a three dimensional sphere. VALUE PROJECT / APPLE DRAWING / COLORED PENCILS In our second part of the project we combined our knowledge about value with the knowledge about another element of art: color.
Technology Ms. Sylvia Aslanian In Technology, students have been learning the new login procedures that enable each student to work within in their own profile. Each kindergarten through eighth grade student logins with their name and a password. In the beginning weeks of Technology, students learn new procedures, discuss previous lessons and rules of the class and go over the scope and sequence, then classroom expectations. In addition elementary and middle school classes are learning how to properly research and cite. A new online researcher has been recently added to the media library, Grolier Online from Scholastic. This interface includes: The New Book of Knowledge, Amazing Animals of the World, America the Beautiful, Today in History, Interactive Maps, World Newspapers, Dictionaries, Daily News and Pro/Con Debates. Check out these sites for a listing of specific lessons and homework: www.millhoppertech.com, www.m3sroxx.com www.jupitergrades.com
Kindergarteners learning how to log on to their computers.
Learning the parts of the computer.
Media/Library Ms. Jennifer Kuntz Media classes are underway for all of the students from Beginners through Fifth grade. Now that we have covered the basic rules and procedures for the library, we can get down to the fun of reading! Using books about topics being studied in class and appropriate to the time of year, the younger students will learn about the parts of a book, how to choose a book, and different kinds of stories. Older children will also learn research skills and strategies. The month of October is Bullying Prevention Month. Media and Technology classes throughout the month will focus on topics such as what bullying is, kinds of bullying (including “cyberbullying”), what to do about bullying, and friendship. Of course, we’ll also talk about all of the fun Fall celebrations, including Halloween, Thanksgiving and other celebrations. D.E.A.R Day is back! We will celebrate “Drop Everything and Read” Day on Monday, November 18 to kick off Screen Free Week. Students (and teachers) will be challenged to go an entire week without watching television, playing video games, or otherwise using a screen for entertainment. Look for information and suggestions to come home as the date gets closer. Our Fall Book Fair will be held December 2-6 – the week after Thanksgiving break. It will be a great opportunity to get a lot of that holiday shopping done! Proceeds will go towards materials for the Media Center, as well as creating a permanent auxiliary library area in the Big Room for the Early Childhood classrooms.
Ms. Sylvia Aslanian ~ Ms. Liz Bublitz
Introducing the Spotlight Kids Junior 2013 – 2014 Third Graders:
Kate Mitrook, Jordan Hall, Sienna Curcio
Sarah Webb, Robyn Jaszczak
This year the juniors will be working on a play called “Totally Red” by Dinah Toups, Lyrics and Music by Barbara Walker produced with special arrangement with Dramatic Publishing in Woodstock, Il. This is a unique and fun retelling of the story of Little Red Riding Hood in multiple styles. It begins with a humorous Storybook version, takes you to a Shakespearian version and then into an Avante-Garde version, the play ends with a Musical Version. This beloved story enables the juniors to learn characterization, genre and three part harmony. The group is up to the challenge and Ms. Liz and I are excited to be working with them each week. The performance will be on January 25, 2014 At Eastside High School Theater at 4:30pm. MONITOR
Introducing the Spotlight Kids: 2013 – 2104 Dillon Webb, President (8th grade), Lexi Phillips, Vice President (8th grade), Caryss Baldwin, Advisor (8th grade) Lydia Black, Crew Chief (8th grade), Becca Bernal, Crew l (7th grade) Arianna Hanley (6th grade), Ross Dobbins (6th grade), Lacey Frye, (6th grade) Lindsey Frye (6th grade), Hunter Pifer-Maxwell, (8th grade), Tara Rangantha (7th grade) Zach Brandt (8th grade), Ava Bender, (7th grade) The Spotlight Kids Thespians are motivated for another successful year. This year we will be preparing for Districts in November and if our ratings are Superior we will be heading to State in Melbourne, Florida. Our Showcase this year will be at Eastside High School on January 25, 2014 at 4:30pm. This year to celebrate the Thespians sixth year anniversary, some of our alumni will be in the showcase. Please mark your calendars. Ms. Liz and I are excited to have Ms. Wendi Stoltzfus, the new administrative assistant at MMS, stopping by to help us some Fridays. She was previously a performer with “Sesame Street Live!” and was also an actress in “Suds” and “The Marvelous Wonderettes” at The Hippodrome. We have made her an honorary thespian!!!! Once again this year our Spotlight Kids Alumni is teaming with us. Thank you to Dominick, Laura, Chandrika, Tiffany, Ben and Cristina. Please be sure to like us on Facebook and visit our website often for all Spotlight Kids Information. www.thespotlightkids.com All For One, One For All, Together the Spotlight Shines Brighter! COMPETITION Event Categories/DISTRICTS: Saturday: November 16, 2013 Monologue Ensemble Scene Ensemble Scene Small Group Musical Small Group Musical Monologue Duet Scene Improv
Tara Dillon, Ava, Zach Lindsey, Lacey, Arianna Hunter, Zach, Ross, Dillon, Lexi, Ava Lindsey, Lacey, Tara, Lexi, Ava, Caryss, Arianna Dillon Caryss , Lexi Hunter, Ross
MMS Spirit Week
Spirit Day Posters (Upper Left) Ms. Anita’s Class (Upper Right) Mr. Richard’s Class (Lower Left) Ms. Christina’s Class (Lower Right) Ms. Sherilyn’s Class
Calendar October 2014 Wednesday, October 7 Tuesday, October 8 Tuesday, October 8 Wednesday, October 9 Tuesday, October 15 Tuesday, October 15 Thursday, October 17 Tuesday, October 22 Tuesday, October 22 Thursday, October 24 Friday, October 25 Friday, October 25 Thursday, October 31
4th and 5th Grade Trip to Appleton Museum Ms. Crystal Sorrow’s Parent Night 4:00-5:30 PM Ms. Elizabeth Fall’s Parent Night 4:30-6:00 PM Mr. Richard Aslanian’s Parent Night 6:00-7:30 PM Ms. Christina Eckstein’s Parent Night 4:30-6:00 PM Ms. Martha Dolan’s Parent Night 4:30-6:00 PM Ms. Christina Miller’s Parent Night 6:00-7:00 PM Ms. Renee Brohamer’s Parent Night 4:30-6:00 PM Ms. Anita Bender’s Parent Night 4:30-6:00 PM Fall Festival 5:30-8:00 PM Student Holiday/Teacher Workday End of 1st Quarter Mr. Richard Aslanian’s Historical Timeline 11:00 AM
November 2014 Friday, November 1 Tuesday, November 5 Tuesday, November 5Thursday, November 7 Friday, November 8 Monday, November 11 Tuesday, November 12 Monday, November 18 Monday, November 18Friday, November 22 Tuesday, November 19 Wednesday, November 20 Thursday, November 21 Friday, November 22 Monday, November 25Friday, November 29
Fall Picture Retake Day Send Report Cards Home Middle School ROPES Trip Holiday—UF Homecoming Holiday—Veteran’s Day PTO Meeting 5:30 DEAR Day (Drop Everything And Read) Screen Free Week Ms. Martha Dolan’s Thanksgiving Feast Ms. Elizabeth Fall’s Thanksgiving Feast Ms. Christina Eckstein’s Thanksgiving Feast Ms. Renee Brohamer’s Thanksgiving Feast Thanksgiving Holiday