Eighth Grade Pollinator Research

In our focus on pollinator problems this year, we have chosen to focus on the resources bees need to live and pollinate effectively.  We recently learned that the bee population is declining due to lack of food sources.  We spent some flex time researching flowers native to Ohio, and different blooming season of these flowers.  We hope to include some of these plants on our St. Joe’s campus to support our local bee population.  The students spent some time analyzing an aerial view of our grounds and we discussed possible areas for new flowers to be planted, and a water source implemented.

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!!!

Slope-Flakes!

In our last two FLEX days, eighth grade has done some hands-on work with equations of lines in slope-intercept form.  They had to use eight lines to create a snowflake image on a coordinate grid.  For each line, they were required to list two ordered pairs (x,y), and write the equation of the line (y=mx + b).  One the graphs were drawn, they needed to make a 3D image of the snowflake using materials from our Maker Space.  We had some unique choices to build our snowflakes with, including: spaghetti, forks, wooden sticks, pipe cleaners, beads and more!

Pollinator Expert Special Guest!

As the eighth grade narrows down problems to tackle during their PBL project this year, we felt we had to explore the current decline of pollinators that some regions are facing.  We were not entirely certain what was causing their decline, or what we could do to help.  Luckily, we had a connection to Mrs. Amber Barnes, Wildlife Conservation Ecologist.  She spoke to us about the problems that pollinators face, among MANY other things we did not know about bees (the main pollinator), and their life cycles.  We are anxious to go over all of this information and brainstorm some new and innovative ideas to help!  Thank you to Mrs. Barnes for coming in to teach us all about pollinators, and how we can be more involved!  

November Food Drive

The eighth grade class’s food drive is going strong with over 800 cans to donate to Second Harvest Food Bank at the end of the week!  We are hoping to break 1,000 items by this Thursday.  Help us beat our goal!

Real Life Rates!

The seventh grade just wrapped up a topic dealing with rates and constants of proportionality.  To test our “real life” knowledge of this topic, we headed to the gym for some laps!  Jacob ran four laps, Abbey walked four laps, Amelia “scootered” four laps, and Alyssa skipped four laps.  We recorded their time per lap to see if any of them were consistent enough in their times to demonstrate a proportional relationship.  Jacob was perfectly consistent, running each of his laps in exactly 16 seconds!  We recognized that Alyssa made a skipping “error”, so her times were not truly valid to interpret.  This class really proved their knowledge of rates in real time!

Shrine Pilgrimmage!

Last Friday our second and eighth grade students had a beautiful day enjoying the grounds of the Sorrowful Mother Shrine.  We were able to explore the shrines and grottos to individual saints and experience mass together.  We loved hearing all the stories of the healings that have happened on that holy ground.  Thanks to everyone that helped make this trip a possibility!

Straw Bridges

While Mrs. Kermes was away at camp, the eighth graders continued work on their straw bridges.  The supplies were 13 long straws, 40 stirring straws, 1 meter of masking tape, and unlimited string. The resulting bridges needed to hold the measuring device and an attached bucket.  We had some fun testing out different designs and finding out which structures were strongest to use!

Constitution Day!

The eighth graders celebrated Constitution Day by completing a Constitution scavenger hunt!  They interacted with the primary resource to answers questions about powers of government branches, amendments, and articles of the Constitution.  Some information students remembered from prior years, other information was brand new!  We are excited to learn more about our nation’s government as our social studies class moves on!

WELCOME BACK!

WeWelcome to the 2019-2020 school year at St. Joseph Parish School!  We are so excited to continue this year with our official STEM designation and all that goes with it.  Please remember to turn in the signature portion of your “Upper Hall Policies and Procedures” sheet to your homeroom teacher.  We also need your technology user agreements back ASAP so we can begin to assign laptops!  If you have any specific questions I can be reached at my new email address mary.mullins@sjs-amherst.org.

I will also be hosting a “Understanding Pearson” session the night of the first parent club meeting to help with questions about online homework and additional resources available for math.  Check out the Wednesday folder for specific details!