Friday, August 04, 2006

It's Time to Move

After conversing with my system's technology coordinator, I feel that Blogger will probably continue to be blocked at school. I want to be able to post assignments at school, so I have begun a new blog at Edublogs. I am still learning how to use the site, but I think I will like it once I get used to it. My new address is Come visit me there!

Tuesday, August 01, 2006


I returned to school yesterday to begin preparing my classroom. While taking a break I sat down at the computer and tried to access the Blogger sign in page. It is now blocked. I can read blogs at school, but I cannot post to my own blog.

My principal has called the technology coordinator to ask about this, but I would be surprised if it is unblocked. So now I have a couple of quandaries. First of all, I am giving a workshop Tuesday on 21st Century Skills. The plan was to have everyone set up their own blogs. I was going to use Blogger because I like it. I have found it very easy to use. I am not as comfortable with the other blogging sites. Edublogs is not blocked, so I guess I will try it.

My second quandary is what to do about this blog. I usually post to it either during my planning period or right after school. If I wait until I get home, it is 7 or 8 o'clock, and someone will usually make a comment about needing the homework. I have a site set up on Edublogs, but I don't like it. I guess I will have to use it.

I'm not really happy about this.

Friday, May 26, 2006

School's Out for Summer!

What a crazy day! There were computer difficulties with the report cards...At one point everyone in three of my classes was given a zero for a semester exam that I did not give. That really messed up some averages! I re-entered all of the grades that were affected. I hope they are right! If your grade is not what I told you it would be, please send me an email. Tell me what your report card says, and I can go up to the school and check on it for you. I think some grades might have ended up a point or two higher than I said they would be. I hope you don't mind if that happends to you because I am not going to change those! (Ha! Ha!)

We had to take a closer look at the criteria for advancing to Algebra I. A few months ago we were told to send everyone in Pre-Algebra on to Algebra I. Last week we heard that they must have an 88 average for the year to be recommended for Algebra I. I was wrapped up in dealing with students who might fail this year and really didn't take time to think about it until yesterday. The requirement of having an 88 would keep many students from advancing to Algebra I that I think are capable of handling an advanced math class. The seventh and eighth grade math teachers decided that an average of 80 for the year would be acceptable. This still leaves a few students below the cut-off. I have recommended those for Pre-Algebra again to strengthen their basic skills before moving on to Algebra I. Many students who take Algebra I in the 8th grade end up repeating it in 9th grade for the same reason.

If you (or your child) took Pre-Algebra this year and made less than an 80 for the year, you will be receiving a letter in your report card explaining this in further detail. Here is a recap of the recommendation criteria:
  • Yearly average = 90 or higher (A) -----------> Algebra I
  • Yearly average = 80-89 (B) -----------> Algebra I
  • Yearly average = 79 or lower (C-F)-----------> Pre-Algebra
Any parent not agreeing with the recommendation for their child is welcome to fill out a waiver form in the office. The only catch is this...If a parent chooses to place a child in a class not recommend by the teacher, the student must remain in that class until the end of the semester no matter what their grades are.

Eighth graders have the opportunity to take several advanced classes next year. A full load of advanced classes would be too much for some students to handle. Please consider carefully your child's strength, weaknesses, and interests before determining which option is best for them. The work load is exceptionally tough, and you do not need to get behind!

By the way, all 7th grade math students automatically advance to Pre-Algebra (unless they fail the year).

I hope there are no glaring typo's in this post. I am having trouble staying awake! It was great to see so many of you at the Daikin Festival tonight; but I am tired, and I need to go to sleep. Have a great summer!

One more thing....(Look, Michael, I figured out how to change colors! For some reason my tool bar was not showing this option. I don't know why I have it now.) Would anyone be interested in an online review this summer to keep your skills fresh? I would be willing to find some things to help you if anyone would like to do this. I would try to make it fun (you know I sometimes miss on that one) and informative. You don't even have to be a current student of mine to do this. What do you say? Is anyone interested? Leave me a comment if you want to try this!

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Two More Days!

Things at school are rapidly winding down. I am frantically trying to grade the last few makeup tests and average grades. I began taking up textbooks and giving out averages today. I will finish doing this tomorrow. Lost math books cost $52.47, and lost pre-algebra books cost $57.48. You can send check (payable to CRMS) or cash if your book has been lost.

I know that your students are concentrating on preparing for their Language Arts and Social Studies exams. I wish them the best!

Have a great summer!

Friday, May 19, 2006

One more week...

I am not really ready for this school year to end, but I am ready for a break! I have enjoyed this group of students so much. I will miss you all next year!

I gave out current averages today. I will be giving a test Monday that will allow students to drop a grade. Their grade today is as low as it can get. If they score higher than their lowest test grade on Monday, then their grade will increase. They should know if they really need to study or not. The math test will be over converting measurements, and the pre-algebra test will be over surface area and volume.

Today's assignments:
1st Period: None
2nd Period: None
3rd Period: p. 576, #10-14 even, p. 581, #11-15 all
4th Period: p. 576, #10-14 even, p. 581, #11-15 all
5th Period: p. 48, #48-52, p. 280, #54-59

Thursday, May 18, 2006

Awards Day

Congratulations to all of the students who received awards this morning. You are to be congratulated for your hard work. I am proud to know you!

1st Period did not meet because of awards day.
2nd Period only met for half a period.
5th Period has to do p. 571, Lesson 3.6, #1-28 for homework. When you multiply two integers, if the signs are the same, the answer is positive. If the signs are different, the answer is negative.

Pre-Algebra: We found the volume of pyramids and cones today. The formula is "one-third area of the base times the height." Homework is pp. 571-572, #10-22 even, 27, 28, 32-34.

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

Six More Days

Everything is winding down. I am frantically trying to get kids to make up tests. I believe that I am more worried about it than they are. That doesn't really make sense to me, but that's the way it is with 7th graders! Students worked in class today, and they may not have work to bring home.

Math: We worked out of the Data Around Us book to find out how much is a million. Students calculated how long it would take their heart to beat 1,000,000 times and how old in years would someone be if they were 1,000,000 hours old. This gave them practice in converting measurements. They cannot bring these books home, so there was no homework.

Pre-Algebra: We looked at volume of prisms and cylinders today. The formula is "area of the base times height." The assignment is pp. 566-567, #12-22 even, 31-36. They were given time in class to work on this, and several were able to finish in class.