St. Jude’s Mathathon: You may now begin working on your math problems and collecting your money from your sponsors. All donations are due by October 20. We are accepting checks or online donations only. Unfortunately, we are unable to process cash brought into school.
After you complete the math problems, please print the certificate from the webpage and bring it in to me for proof of completion.
Ch. 3 Test & Exam Info: We will have our Chapter 3 test this Friday. Our 1st semester exam and comprehension check will be given on Thursday, October 14. Since October 14 is the last day of the marking period, it is imperative that the exam be taken on time. Therefore, I encourage all students to be in attendance to take their exam. If you know your child will be absent, please make arrangements to take the exam before Thursday.
Edmodo and VoiceThread: As you may already know, I love technology and try to incorporate as much of it as I can into my lessons. We just completed our first VoiceThread project this week and it was a huge success. I would like to invite you to view and comment on this project.
I have also introduced a new social networking site to the classes that is not only safe but also fun and educational. We will be using Edmodo throughout the year for projects, sharing and lesson collaboration. You may be interested in reading this article that discusses social media in the classroom. I’d love to hear your thoughts.
The Case For Social Media in Schools http://bit.ly/aaLr3i
This week we began exploring a variety of web sites that we will be using throughout the year for enrichment and higher level learning experiences. To become a digital learner, it is important to be safe. Guidelines have been set not only by our district but also by me to keep this learning experience safe, fun and rewarding. Everything we do at these sites is an extension of our classroom and the same rules of behavior continue to exist.
Tips for digital learning
- Keep your passwords to yourself.
- Respect yourself and others online.
- Cyber bullying is NEVER acceptable.
- Never post sensitive information such as your address, phone number or last name.
- Edmodo is a social learning network for teachers, students, schools and districts.
- Edmodo is accessible online or using any mobile device, including DROID and iPhones.
- Edmodo provides free classroom communication for teachers, students and administrators on a secure social network.
- Edmodo provides teachers and students with a secure and easy way to post classroom materials, share links and videos, and access homework, grades and school notices.
- Edmodo stores and shares all forms of digital content – blogs, links, pictures, video, documents, presentations, and more.
Animoto is a web application that, with the click of a button, produces videos using images, video clips and music that a user selects. Utilizing patent-pending Cinematic Artificial Intelligence, Animoto videos have the emotional impact of a movie trailer and the visual energy of a music video.
A VoiceThread is a collaborative, multimedia slide show that holds images, documents, and videos and allows people to navigate pages and leave comments in 5 ways – using voice (with a mic or telephone), text, audio file, or video (via a webcam). Users can doodle while commenting, use multiple identities, and pick which comments are shown through moderation.
It is always so exciting to begin the new school year and I have experienced 38 of them. Every year is filled with new challenges and exciting possibilities. If you think that students are anxious and afraid of 6th grade just think about how we teachers feel about all of the new students that await us.
Click on the picture to see our first class video.
This year I have 121 students assigned to me in 5 classes. Think about how challenging and overwhelming this is. I have to remember all their names, remember who has to sit up front, answer all their questions, help them open their locker and make sure they get on the right bus.
The year started out with class sizes that are manageable except for 6th hour. I am hoping that some schedule adjustment will take place this week to balance out that class of 32 students. This week I will then be able to assign each student their own CPS clickers that we will use to engage the students completely in each lesson. I look forward to introducing the students to and making use of many high level technological tools. I am hoping that through this technology and the enrichment activities that they are exposed to, I can enrich my classes learning opportunities.
Increasing the communication among my parents and myself is one of my major goals this year and with that in mind I encourage you all to subscribe to my blog so that you will be informed each time I add a post. I will be using the blog as my primary method of communication. You will find extra credit assignments, classroom news and student information included in the blog posts.
You can now follow me on Twitter at http://twitter.com/MsIonno and I encourage you to check my tweets for updates.
By now everyone should also have their calculators (TI 30) and their spiral notebooks but if they don’t I still have a few calculators available for your convenience. Currently we are still not using the calculators for our class work but I will let you know when they are needed and will be able to be used for homework.
Every year it amazes me the variety of names that are represented by the students in my class. This “Wordle” is a “word cloud” generated by the first names of all of my students. The clouds give greater prominence to words that appear more frequently in my classes. Can you tell just by the picture which names occur most often in my classes this year? Did you guess that Taylor, Dylan and Matthew Andrew, Austin, Hannah, John, Joseph, Spencer and Patrick occur most. But you can’t tell that I have an Alexia, Alexandra and Alexander that all want to be called Alex.
But the most interesting thing is that I have 6 sets of twins. I actually thought it was only 3 sets because they were in the same class. But after cross referencing the emails that were sent with the students names I found three more sets of twins. So if I see you in the hall and don’t have my seating chart, don’t be upset with me if I can’t remember your name. It is going to be an interesting year.
Our first three weeks was a huge success! I know it was a big adjustment for many students coming into the middle school and having to deal with 6 teachers, all those books, papers to get signed and all the rules. From my point of view it was just as scary. I had to meet and greet 125 new students that all have different personalities, needs and wants. Not to mention how smart you all are.
The lockers did give us a challenge but most of you have already mastered this skill. This year I was very successful at securing our class set of books. Thank you to the 32 students who volunteered to use the online textbook.
So what did you think about how your first 3 weeks of 6th grade? Would you like to share how it went?