Seeing the Light

Yes..... After 2 weeks at my new school (and new grade--7!), I am slowly beginning to see the light. It has been quite the adventure (to see the least)! 

Nevertheless, we are making progress.

Here is a little of what we've been up to......

Our principal is a big fan of "Problem of the Week". Each Monday the students are presented a problem in math and use their free time throughout the week to complete it. I usually give them a few minutes at the beginning of each math class to work on it. My goal in the coming weeks is going to be a math POW display board -- A board where different methods of solving each problem is displayed by 3-4 students. This will be a great way to honour the students work and get others thinking about how they kick their work up a notch.
I try to keep reference charts up in the class for a few days so the students can refer to them.
I also make a mini-version for them to keep in their notebooks. My plan is to compile them all and make a little bundle for TPT'ers, as soon as possible.
We have been trying to get settled in our daily 3 part math in our classroom.
Here are a few pics of the small group problems we worked on this week. We have just begun with rates and ratios.

In Science class we dove into the Particle Theory! Oh Yaaaaa!
What better way to see the 3 states of matter than to make JELLO!
After looking more closely at the 3 states, we studied the particles in each state and their characteristics.

We will be taking this learning a step further this week.......See video below.
For the kinesthetic and visual learners :)

In Religion, the students have created Life Maps and then have analyzed their life maps--- asking themselves where their life map is leading them. This week was presentation week! I have 3-4 students present their Life Maps each day. It has been very eye opening the journey some of them have already been on in their 12 year life. It is also very enjoyable listening to their goals and where they see themselves in the future.

In Literacy, we are "Making Connections". Because I have such a diverse group of learners (SK-Grade 7 level), shared reading has been a great way to get everyone involved, without feeling the pressure of independence. This week we read an array of selections. I had the students use sticky notes to connect to the piece that we read together. Then, I quickly breezed through some of the connections and created a complete connection piece/paragraph.

In writing, we are working on Expository pieces. Very similar to what I did with my grade 7/8 class HERE. I have been using iPad, Laptops, pencil paper, and desktop computers to get the troops motivated to write! I have gotten the kids onto MyTools2Go accounts (through Google) and they are beginning to write their "good copies" on their Drive. The lesson this week will to send me their written work digitally into a Dropbox through our Provinces "E-Learning" site. Very excited about this! Here's a mini GoogleDocs Tutorial.

During Independent Reading, I put up various response questions. You can find them in our "Independent Reading Box Pack". The students chose a question to respond to and worked on adding text support. We are getting there! Lots and lots of modelling.

This week we are going to begin "Self- Assessment". I have been brainstorming some ideas on how to make this happen and I am thinking about using Google Forms.
I am really trying to teach goal setting and accountability..... Especially at this age.

A big thank you to some helpers that were in town visiting from North Carolina last week. They helped me get a few things organized and saved me a ton of time--- Thanks, Lauren & Joe! XO

 Have a Happy Monday!
It's a 4 day week here in Canada as this coming weekend is THANKSGIVING!! Cheers to that! :)


  1. Finally, you're teaching in the senior end. That can only mean good things for those of us who keep up on your blog!


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