Carrie's Update 5-16-19

posted May 16, 2019, 12:40 PM by Cynthia Friedman

Ridgeline Middle School STEM News 5/15/19




Bike and Walk to School Month

May 20

Middle School Math (and Science for 8th Graders) State Testing Begins

May 23

UO TeachOut - Carrie and Maizzy on Field Trip with small group

May 24

Move-Up Day/8th Grade Escape

May 27

Memorial Day - NO SCHOOL

June 6

8th Grade Graduation

June 7

Grading Day - NO SCHOOL

June 10-13

Middle School Spring Trip!

June 14

Last Day of School!

LInk to Ridgeline Full Calendar:


*State Testing - Your students will be taking their state math (and science-8th graders only) tests this coming week.  


*Veggiee starts for sale!!! Drop by the cookie crew sale this week!! The middle school will be having a vege-start sale as well.  The Garden Crew has been working hard planting beets, zucchini, swiss chard (lots of swiss chard), and other very exciting vegetables!!!


Life Science

Genetics - We began our genetics unit this week.  Students created an imaginary organism named a Reeze-ot, by randomly pulling two alleles for eight different traits from a cup. Half of the trait cards in the cup were dominant alleles represented by capital letters, and half were recessive, represented by lower-case letters. They then used a key to build their organism’s phenotype, demonstrating similar traits to a rice plant. Depending on what combination of dominant and/or recessive alleles they pulled, their organism was tall (HH/Hh-3 marshmallows) or short (hh-1 marshmallow), had two leaves (LL/Ll -2 pipe cleaner loops ), or one leaf (ll -1 pipe cleaner loop), had a large (CC - 4 seed beads on a spike), medium (Cc - 3 seed beads on a spike), or small(cc - 2 seed beads on a spike) amount of seeds, etc.  As you can see there were some genes that showed up in their organism as completely dominant, and some that showed up as partially dominant. Sometimes the dominant trait was desired, sometimes it was the recessive trait. Later in this unit we will use a computer simulation to “breed” fancy birds for ideal feather combinations, and they will put this knowledge into action hatching and breeding virtual birds. This is a fun unit to wrap up the year!

Students love this lab, and not just because of the heady smell of marshmallows!

Question prompts:

  • Which traits showed partial dominance? Which traits showed complete dominance?.

  • How well does a small sample size represent the mathematically predicted presence of a trait in a population?

  • What proportion of the Reeze-ots were expected to have the dominant trait (GG/Gg), green leaves?  What proportion ended up with the recessive trait (gg), white leaves?

  • Is that the portion that ended up with the trait?

  • How many students asked Carrie if they could eat the marshmallows?

  • How old were the marshmallows?  (Hint: I teach this every other year!)

Best Regards,

Carrie and India


Middle School Science and Math Online Resources


CPM textbooks:

- All CPM students are to sign in to their online Textbooks at using Google Sign-In and their Ridgeline Email address.  There is core problem and homework support for every assignment, links to the Desmos online tool and many other resources.

- If a CC3 student cannot access this resource, they can use the CPM Core Connections 3 Homework Help Link:


- For parents with students in CPM Core Connections 2, the link below is to a good resource for getting your head around math concepts in CPM Core Connections, Course 2.

CPM Core Connections, Course 2 Parent Guide with Extra Practice: