Jon's Weekly Update 2-4-16

posted Feb 4, 2016, 1:28 PM by Cynthia Friedman
IMPORTANT DATES:
Tues, February 9, 3:15-4:15: TRUE Rehearsal
Thurs, Feb 11, 3:15-4:15: TRUE Rehearsal
Mon, Feb 15: NO SCHOOL: PRESIDENTS DAY
Tues, February 16, 3:15-4:15: TRUE Rehearsal
Thurs, Feb 18, 3:15-4:15: TRUE Rehearsal
Friday, Feb 19 5:45-6:15: TRUE PERFORMANCE: Ridgeline Pasta Dinner
Sunday, Feb 21 10-11am: TRUE PERFORMANCE: Asian Celebration
Tues, February 9, 3:15-4:15: TRUE Rehearsal
Wed., Feb 24, 2:30pm-4:15pm: TRUE PERFORMANCE: Junction City Assisted Living
Thurs, Feb 25, 3:15-4:15: **NO TRUE Rehearsal***
Sat, Feb 27, 10:30am-11:30am Future of Ridgeline's Middle School Meeting
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Dear Middle School Family,

Next week Report Cards will be coming home. The timing is a little awkward for the Middle School, simply because we're in the middle of the second Trimester. The report cards reflect the students' final grades for Trimester 1, and the status of their grades in Trimester 2 up to February 2. The good news is there's still over a month to go in Trimester 2, so there's still time to get work caught up, if students need to.

Please note that there are two report cards: one from Carrie and one from Jon. Jupiter Ed doesn't allow us to combine our classes onto a single report card. The plus side to this, is it will be very clear which of us you should connect with if you'd like to discuss your student's academic progress in a particular subject.

As always, you can log in to Jupiter Grades at any time to see the details of your students' assignments and check on their progress.

Humanities

This week, we wrapped up the PBS Documentary, "Slavery and the Making of America." It is truly an engrossing, powerful, and heartbreaking story. Starting next week, students will identify topics of Deep Personal Interest for Independent Research. The overarching context for the projects is "Slavery and the Making of America."

We've learned a lot in the last few weeks about the evolution of the United States from early colonization. The time range for the projects will be from 1600 until the end of the Civil War in 1865. The intention of the projects is to deepen individual understanding of the impact of slavery on the development of the U.S. during that time period. Students will be presenting what they've learned to the class, so we can all benefit and grow from their efforts.

Topics can include anything from inventions (such as the Cotton Gin), historical events (including the Civil War, or the Revolutionary War, or...), historical figures (Abraham Lincoln, Frederick Douglass, Robert Smalls, Maria W. Stewart), historical documents, cultural developments (music, food, etc.)... The possibilities are endless. Once again, clarity of focus is going to be a key to success in these projects.

We will spend next week, honing the students' "Driving Question" for their research, and helping them break their big question down into a series of smaller questions to seek the answers to. Please talk with your student at home about their project, and help them be realistic about what they can accomplish in two short weeks of research, followed by another week of production.

(We will be studying Westward Expansion in our next Unit, so I want to leave explorations into that topic (including the Steam Engine and the Railroad) off the table for now.)

Thank you for your positive support during this difficult unit of study. It's been an emotional journey for all of us here, and it's important work.

Best,
Jon
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