Welcome Back and Welcome to 8th grade!

The first day back is always filled with nervous anticipation both for students and teachers. Today was an indication of great things to come. We have an incredible team of talented, driven and most of all engaged students. We started the day with a game of Rock, Paper Scissors “Evolution” style and the tone is set that the 8th grade year is a time of transition to a young adult where independence, freedom go hand in hand with meeting your responsibilities.

We jumped right into the work of math/science by reviewing the essential expectations and students tackled some tough problems right on Day 1….in fact, noting from some student’s observations: “Is this Math?” The question was prompted from some intriguing problems that pushed their critical thinking and problem solving skills. It is indeed the essence of math- a combination of critical thinking, sharing thoughts with others with some essential mathematical know-how. There will lots of challenging problems and the point is to make your brain work, think and sort out things. Students immediately saw the benefit at making math visual, communicating with others and collaborating in order to “make sense” of the math. Making sense is the bedrock of all higher-order thinking and I was glad to see all jumping into the work immediately.

The syllabus was sent home for student and parental review so please make sure you look through it. It outlines the coursework, grades (yes, we do have grades), key expectations and course materials needed. I am asking that each student have a scientific calculator as well to support their computational skills…..See below…just a basic one…NOT GRAPHING! This is about $10 at a local wal-mart or target or office supply store.

Above all else….students must have at least a pencil and a spiral for class!! That is essential!!

Looking forward to a great year….and I have office hours after school if you ever need to see me or feel free to email me for further questions!