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Middle School Matters – Nov 09, 2018

General Announcements

School Service Project: We are assembling shoe boxes for Operation Christmas Child, a world-wide service project that provides children with a gift of essential and fun items that often is the only present they ever receive. These children also hear the Gospel and learn about God’s love for them. Wolverine Worldwide is providing all the shoe boxes that students will be assembling and we need your help in collecting the items that will go inside. We are excited to have each of our students assemble a shoe box with their buddies, write a letter, and pray for the child who receives their box this Christmas.

Not sure what to bring in? Check the list that came home with your child this week. 

Interested in helping? We need volunteers to organize tables and others to help classes assemble shoe boxes

Fifth Grade:

Water Walk: Water Walk is taking place Nov 14-15. See your email for more details. Your child will need an empty plastic gallon jug for the walk.

Rice Week: Check your email for more details about Rice Week. We need parent volunteers to help serve rice Nov 26-30. If you are willing to help please sign up! We also need 4 rice cookers for the week. Please let Miss Slauer know if you are willing to let us borrow your rice cooker.

Cookie Factory: Cookie forms are due today, Nov 09. Cookie factory is happening Fri Nov 16. We need parent volunteers to help. If you are willing to help before or during school sign up! Encourage your child to continue selling tubs of cookie dough over the weekend. We need about 560 as a 5th grade to raise funds for camp. Each tub is $10 and can make about two dozen cookies.


Art: 5th grade students will be working on printing in single colors next week. Prints are looking great.

Band: We are hard at work in our method books, and we will be playing in the Dec 13 Christmas Concert with grades 5-8! Go band!

Bible: Pentateuch books are due this Fri Nov 9 and the Ten Commandments memory is due Fri Nov 16. Need some study tools? Here are two resources - motions & images. This week in Bible students were given identities from different countries. We held a “Silent Feast” as a class where each student received a different portion of food based on the country they were from. We followed this with a discussion about differences between developed, developing, and undeveloped countries. Students began to research basic facts about their countries that will be part of their country poster project. We also began the book A Long Walk to Water, which is based on a true story comparing and contrasting the lives of a Sudanese Lost Boy, Salva, to a Sudanese village girl named Nya. Lastly, ask your child how many grains of rice they’ve donated on www.freerice.com!

Language Arts: Students continue to work on different writing activities.  We are also creating our own memes during tech time.

Math: This week in math we studied decimals through a Decimal Diner! Students took orders and calculated receipts to simulate real-world opportunities where decimals are used. Our Chapter 5 Add & Subtract Decimals test is Tues Nov 13 and the Practice Test is due Mon Nov 12. Here is the answer key for the practice test!

Orchestra: Focus your practice on the sheet music which was handed out this week. We hope to perform these pieces for you Dec 13th, our Christmas Concert. Remember to hand in practice sheets every Thursday!

PE: Please remind students to come to class prepared with appropriate clothing and shoes to be physically active. If your student still has a uniform from a fall sport please have them bring it to Mr. Sanderson before Thanksgiving break.

Science: After studying our “space neighborhood” (the Solar System), this week we’re focusing on ways that God has made Earth an especially great place to live. We’ll spend time learning about our atmosphere and the amazing gift of water on our planet.

Social Studies: The Native American Group Project is due on Monday. Students will be reporting all that they have learned about their Native American group to the class.

Sixth Grade:

Operation Christmas Child: 6th graders need to bring in socks, underwear, and t-shirts for 4-10 year olds by Wed.

Student Laptops: Beginning Mon Nov 12, students will bring their school laptop home with them each night. We have some information and suggestions to share with you before this happens. Please review this information and talk with your student before Nov 12.

6th Grade Girls Book Club: We will meet in Mrs. Westrate’s room from 3:00-3:30pm this week Mon and Thur. We will be reading/listening to Chester and Gus by Cammie McGovern. 

Devotion Sign-up: Sign up to lead devotions for our 6th Graders on a Thur (8:00-8:10am) this school year. We love to have parents and guests come to share a story, song, verse, prayer or devotional with us.

Chicken Checkup & Got Yolk?: Is your child’s team “on duty” for Chicken Checkup this week? It is important to share the responsibility of taking care of our chickens on the weekend. After determining which Team your child is on, please sign up to take care of chores on Saturday and/or Sunday at some point this trimester (be sure to ask your child which team they are on to get to the correct sign up). If your child has questions, he or she should contact the “Eggsecutive Council” member on his or her team.


Art: 6th students will complete their pencil self-portraits this week and transition to learning a little more in depth about Picasso’s various period of art creation and then create a Picasso inspired self-portrait.  Check the homework calendar for sketchbook and project due dates.

Band: We are working on our Concert music for our Dec 13 concert, and also learning all sorts of new things in our method books!

Bible: We’re focusing on God’s faithfulness, his holiness, his justice and his mercy this week as we continue to follow Joshua and the Israelites into the Promised Land.

History: We will continue learning about the Sumer Civilization next week.

Language Arts: We continue to practice grammar, spelling, and reading. Students are also writing a “story pyramid” about their independent reading book. This is due on Monday. Students should begin thinking their next independent reading book which will need to be about a character who has some disABILITY. I have a list if needed. Students will have to have this book finished by Dec 10.

Math: In math we will continue to study ratios, rates and proportions.

Orchestra: Focus on your Christmas music and  the technic book with high 3rd and 4th fingers.

PE: Please remind students to come to class prepared with appropriate clothing and shoes to be physically active. If your student still has a uniform from a fall sport please have them bring it to Mr. Sanderson before Thanksgiving break.

Science: Bacteria farms are growing! We’ll keep a close eye on them over the coming week and will be sharing knowledge that we collect. The 6th graders have come up with some pretty important questions to test like “How much surface can a Clorox wipe effectively clean before it wears out?” and “What is the difference in amount and type of bacteria between washed and unwashed produce?” and “Is the 5-second rule real?”

Seventh Grade:

Algebra (7th): We are spending time in the world of inequalities for the next week. We will have a test right before Thanksgiving break.

Art: 7th graders are working on adding acrylic paint highlights and additions to their texture paintings. Check the homework calendar for sketchbook and project due dates.

Band: What a fantastic job our soloists did for Solo and Ensemble. WELL DONE!!! Yay! :) Thank you so much for supporting your musician in this challenging and character building event! Excellent work! Hooray! Next up: Christmas Concert Dec 13.

Bible (Holtrop): In Bible we continue to study prayer and look at the many examples that prayer was used in the Bible and how we can use these examples of prayer in our own lives. 

Bible (Huttenga): Students are getting very close to wrapping up their Thankfulness project - you will hear (and maybe see) the results of this project very soon. After this is completed, students will be exploring the theme of Sanctification and learning about how it applies to their lives.

History: We are making good progress in our study of South Asia. This coming Tuesday we will take a map quiz on the names of countries in Asia. We have been practicing in class and students have a link on moodle to help practice. We will take a unit test on South Asia in the following week.

Language Arts: We will continue our unit revolving around our first classroom novel study of The Witch of Blackbird Pond.

Math (Holtrop): We will spend time studying rational numbers. We will spend a lot of our time computing with fractions and mixed numbers.

Orchestra: Solo and Ensemble Festival is Thursday, Nov 8 here at school! Schedules and times were sent home with all 7th graders.  All will perform in the orchestra room and parents are invited to come and hear their string player perform! They are sounding fantastic! All students should wear black and white AND need to write a thank you note to their accompanist!

PE: Please remind students to come to class prepared with appropriate clothing and shoes to be physically active. If your student still has a uniform from a fall sport please have them bring it to Mr. Sanderson before Thanksgiving break.

Pre-Algebra (Kiser): Monday we will being or study of proportions.

Science: We continue looking at the incredible, diverse world God has blessed us with and how we can impact it for the good or bad. 

Eighth Grade:

Graduation and Baby Pictures for Yearbook: Please email Mr. Witte a picture for the yearbook if you do not want to use the school picture.  Pictures are requested by Thanksgiving Break.


Algebra: Next week we will finish up Chapter 5 and take a test at the end of the week.  

Art: 8th grade students are continue work on their ceramic pots. Next week all students should be work on their lids, texture on the outside of the pots, and additions. Check the homework calendar for sketchbook and project due dates.   

Band: What a great job the band did for Band Festival. The judges really enjoyed working with the band; and the students played SO WELL. I am so thankful for your students and all their fine playing! The judges commented on the difficulty of the music and the excellent focus, musical skills and evident hard work of the students. Way to go band!

Bible (Huttenga): We’re wrapping our unit on The Case for Faith. Students will be working on a final individual project for the trimester, an essay titled “Articulation of Faith (So Far)”. That essay is due to be submitted on Google Classroom by November 14 at the end of our class that day.  

Bible (Van Noord): We are finishing our Case for Christ unit, and also beginning to study the book of Mark.

Geometry: We are learning about proofs!

History: We are continuing our study on the U.S. Constitution and the Bill of Rights.  

Language Arts: Students have finished reading John Steinbeck’s The Pearl. As we consider the story and concepts like indirect characterization, we will turn our focus back to NHD in a big way the coming week. Each day in class will be focused on mini-lessons and work time to help construct a cohesive draft of an essay before Thanksgiving Break.

PE: Please remind students to come to class prepared with appropriate clothing and shoes to be physically active. If your student still has a uniform from a fall sport please have them bring it to Mr. Sanderson before Thanksgiving break.

Pre-Algebra: Monday is our test on Powers and Roots. An online practice test is available on moodle. Please encourage your child to review their practice test after submission and learn from their mistakes. Tuesday we will begin our study of proportions.

Orchestra: Our 8th grade string ensemble received all top ratings for their performance on Thursday! YAY orchestra. The symphony judge was highly impressed with the musical skills and difficult music that they performed. Keep up your great work.

Science: We will have an I-check early next week on the Moon and our solar system. We will then be looking at light and the uses of it in planetary science