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Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Boys PE today (Tues. 2/21)

The boys conquered Marshmallow River, but it wasn't easy!

In PE today, the boys tackled the classic initiative "Marshmallow River." In this initiative, the whole team must make it across the river without stepping in and sinking. In order to accomplish this feat, the team gets a limited number of marshmallows. Marshmallows can be stepped, but must be in contact with a student at all times or else they sink (i.e. I steal them). The hardest parts of this initiative are communication and teamwork. I made it even harder for them by "silencing" the group's natural leader Junte. The team had to work out the problem in a whole new way without Junte making and implementing a plan and Junte was challenged in a new way by experiencing what it is like to watch and try to communicate non-verbally. There was a lot of frustration and many different techniques tried out. After many tries and almost 30 minutes, the whole team made it across the river! The group expressed that this challenge was much more difficult than previous initiatives, but they felt more successful when they finished it.

Good Job Boys!

Tomorrow in PE we will be playing games in honor of Caleb's Birthday.

Tornado on the SUN!

NASA's solar dynamic observatory has captured footage of a tornado on the sun. This extreme solar weather has effects all the way to Earth. Airplanes have even been rerouted because of the solar tornado!

Read the full story at NPR

Science Classes Feb 20-24

6th Grade:
The 6th graders are studying forms of energy. We are currently reading about Kinetic and Potential Energy. On Monday we took our chairs and books outside to take advantage of the mild Albuquerque weather and held class on the patio. It was a little chilly in the shade, but it was a nice change in scenery. We will finish reading and discussing section one on Tuesday and will be doing experiments in class on Wednesday and Thursday.
**Important for 6th graders**
I handed out a packet on Monday that has your participation points page, a homework page describing your assignments in detail, and the handouts for homework and classwork. If you lose this packet, you will not be able to participate in the lab activities. Parents, please ask to look at this, so you can be sure homework is being completed. The participation points page needs to be handed back in on Monday with your signature.

7th Grade
The 7th graders are working on a unit project to wrap up our unit on invertebrates. In groups, the students are researching an invertebrate that they think is especially cool and are working on expressing that information in creative ways. Sara and Marwa are producing a puppet show about the vampire squid. Fatimah and Nimra are constructing a diorama exhibiting the pin-cushion starfish. Odey and Taha have crafted a model of the box jellyfish. Rinad, Amina, Gada, and Alexis are making informative and decorative posters about the Portuguese Man-O-War and Ctenophores. They will be presenting on Wednesday. The grades will count either as a project or a test based on what the students feel will help their grade most.

8th Grade
The 8th graders are now studying vertebrates and have been learning about bony and cartilaginous fish. In class on Monday, students looked at a shark jaw, shark teeth, and otoliths (fish ear bones) during lecture. On Thursday, we will be dissecting perch in class. I have sent an email with information about perch and how to dissect them. Please make sure you look at this material before Thursday so we can have a successful dissection.