JU-B Weekly Note

Dear JU-B Families,

This week, JU-B students pushed themselves hard. From our current event focused morning meetings, found poetry work in theme, science report writing, and biography revising, students have been stretching their thinking across the disciplines!

The week started off with a discussion of Pearl Harbor, honoring the anniversary on Monday. Through our morning meeting discussions, students learned about some of the after affects of the attack, specifically the decision of the U.S. government to set up Japanese interment camps. From here, our discussions turned to current-day mirroring of these sentiments towards immigrants and non-white U.S. citizens as we discussed the treatment of Muslim refugees. Students were curious to learn more and insightful and respectful in their comments.

In theme this week, we continued our study of D’Aulaires as we read the next four stories in our anthology, including the story of King Midas and Sisyphus. For these stories, students were assigned a specific number of words, ranging from 10 to 100. Working with a partner, they reviewed the story and then worked to pull out specific words, phrases, or sentences in order to determine the most important parts. Students combined these in order to write a poem that summarized the story. It was wonderful to hear how students stripped the story to it’s skeleton based on the number of words available to them, For the second story, they changed how many words they had. Those who had a low number worked with a higher number and vice versa. After the process, students did some great reflecting on how to figure out what the most important pieces of a text are.

We’ve been working with JU-D this week in order to write our Mythbusters report for science. So far, students have drafted their cover page and quantitative data page and are in the process of drafting their qualitative data page (due Monday.) Though the project is frustrating in some respects, many students are having an authentic research experience as they are discovering that there is a lot more data they wish they could go back and collect now and some data they they did collect that is not particularly relevant to their research question. Students are working through these challenges in a thoughtful way.

Finally, students spent significant time this week wrapping up their god or goddess biographies. After a two-stage peer revision process and some work on their conclusion paragraphs, which answer the question, Why is this God/Goddess important and what does he/she show us that people in Ancient Greece valued?, students are participating in check-out conferences to complete their work. We’re looking forward to celebrating this accomplishment next week!

Last week, we added a note that the “Loser” book group will have a food treat in class. The Maniac Magee group will have one as well. We have been granted an exemption for the standard food policy because the food is brand specific and plays a major role in the book. We will be eating Butterscotch Krimpets made by Tastykake. Please help us to keep this a surprise for the students!

Enjoy the weekend and we’ll see you back at school soon!

Sincerely,

Hilary and Dan