Middle school's primary focus over the next two weeks will be science fair. As such, I am including a significant amount of detail about science fair in this update. We are also quite excited to be working on BOB! A detailed list and explanation can be found at he bottom of this e-mail. Our current historical focus is the French Revolution and all of its inequalities and violence. I will be sending a separate shorter e-mail updating you on our approach to learning about this time period in sixth grade.
All students should bring in their display board this week. They were assigned to have it in on Monday so that we can work on it at school. Students will all be formatting their display board in a specific way, so they should not be working on their boards at home unless I specifically instruct them to do so. More information about science fair can be found on our blog here: http://chpcs6thgrade.weebly.com/science-fair.html
The top projects will be given an opportunity to advance to the state competition. Please note, however, that placing 1st, 2nd, or 3rd in their category at our science fair is NOT a guarantee of advancing to state.
How to format your paper:
As with the display board, we are going to be working on writing up our report here at school. There is a very specific format for their paper. They may feel free to type up their work at home, but should be able to retrieve it while at school in order to format it correctly.
January 14th, Thursday- Complete abstract, bibliography, and title page DUE
January 11th, Monday- Begin work on science fair display board
January 19th, Monday- Complete final written report DUE
January 19th, Monday- Display board DUE
January 21st, Thursday- Science Fair Open House 4 to 5 PM (For parents and family to visit)
January 22nd, Friday- Science Fair (all day, mandatory attendance)
Please note that family and friends are not allowed to visit the science fair on Friday. If you would like to see the science fair and its various submissions, please plan on attending Thursday's open house.
Battle of the Books:
Battle of the Books has begun! Third through eighth grade will spend the next six weeks reading and strategizing before going head to head with the other classes in fast paced battles that test comprehension. Tuesday the official list of 29 books was released. Classes will work together to not only read these books, but master them. Because each student can answer only three questions per battle, it must be a team effort. Which class will come out on top? It's anyone's game at this point. Be sure to ask your student what BOB book they are reading. You are more than welcome to read it with them or even to them!
How are books chosen?
The Battle of the Book list is chosen by a team of teachers and administrators. They review the National Librarian’s Association recommendations, Newberry Medal winners, Caldecott Medal winners, and other notable award winners. From these lists they find books that range from the lowest reading level participating to 3 years above the highest grade participating. From there they ensure that we have fiction and nonfiction, historical fiction, classics, sports fiction, animal fiction, adventure, and a biography. The last consideration is a balance between female and male characters. The idea is to have at least one book in the list that appeals to every child participating.
What if I think a book is over my child’s head or is inappropriate for them?
The beauty of Battle of the Books is that it is a team effort. No one child is expected to read every book. In fact, it’s best if they don’t read every book. Choose 2 or 3 from the list that you are OK with and read those.
Can my child listen to the book/watch the movie/have it read to them etc?
YES! The idea is for children to be exposed to literature and to understand the story. They can have it read to them by an adult or older sibling, listen to it on tape, or read it themselves. They can watch the movie, but be careful; often the movie is not the same as the book.
1. Theodore Boone, Kid Lawyer by John Grisham
2. James and the Giant Peach by Roald Dahl
3. Holes by Louis Sachar
4. The Mighty Mars Rovers: The Incredible Adventures of Spirit and Opportunity by Elizabeth Rusch
5. Emma by Jane Austen
6. Stuart Little by E.B. White
7. Harriet the Spy by Louise Fitzhugh
8. Muggie Maggie by Beverly Cleary
9. Ecoviews Snakes, Snails, and Environmental Tales by Whit Gibbons and Anne R. Gibbons
10. Freckle Juice by Judy Blume
11. Elephant Run by Roland Smith
12. The Skirt by Gary Soto
13. The Boy on the Wooden Box How the Impossible Became Possible . . . on Schindler's List by Leon Leyson with Marilyn J.Harran & Elisabeth B. Leyson
14. The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams
15. Love, Ruby Lavender by Deborah Wiles
16. Courage Has No Color-The True Story of the Triple Nickles: America's First Black Paratroopers by Tanya Lee Stone
17. Peace Warriors by Andrea Davis Pinkney
18. The Wildlife Detectives How Forensic Scientists Fight Crimes Against Nature by Donna M. Jackson
19. Tuck Everlasting by Natalie Babbitt
20. Girls Think of Everything: Stories of Ingenious Inventions by Women by Catherine Thimmesh
21. The Walk On by John Feinstein
22. Frindle by Andrew Clements
23. Attack of the Deranged Mutant Killer Monster Snow Goons, a Calvin and Hobbes Collection by Bill Watterson
24. Waiting for the Magic by Patricia MacLachlan
25. How Oliver Olson Changed the World by Claudia Mills
26. Harvesting Hope: The Story of Cesar Chavez by Kathleen Krull
27. The Castle in the Attic by Elizabeth Winthrop
28. Roller Girl by Victoria Jamieson
29. Fish in a Tree by Lynda Mullaly Hunt