6TH GRADE NEWS

LANGUAGE ARTS AND HISTORY:

Sixth grade has been engaging in collaborative learning in all subjects, a few times a week. Whether it’s analyzing an Ancient Roman map for geographical features, discussing predictions and conclusions in a novel study, or practicing compound-complex sentences, working together offers benefits. Students can rely on each other’s knowledge, consider a new perspective, and feel more comfortable volunteering to a partner instead of to the whole class. Partners or groups of three tend to be more productive than larger groups, as each person must contribute, or nothing gets done. Sixth graders are also concerned with justice, so they will be fair to their partners, but not let them shirk their responsibilities. Partners also rotate throughout the week to ensure that our variety of personalities can mix. The teams then meet back as a whole class and everyone shares their work product. It’s wonderful to see what learning can be done together!

MATH AND SCIENCE:

Ft. Worth Regional Science Olympiad

The Spartan Science Olympiad team traveled to Ft. Worth to compete in one of the ten Texas Science Olympiad Regional tournaments. There are over 100 teams in Texas competing at these Regional tournaments for 30 spots at the State tournament. Our team placed 2nd overall at our Regional, so we are eagerly awaiting a notification to see if we advanced to the State level...This would be an incredible feat for a first-year team!

1st Place Events:

Density Lab (Chris & Jonah)

Dynamic Planet (Chris & Nick)

Write It Do It (Annabelle & Molly)

2nd Place Events:

Boomilever (Dylan & Morgan)

Herpetology (Chris & Ayres)

3rd Place Events:

Fossils (Jonah & Morgan)

Thermodynamics (Annabelle & Nick)


Susannah Joyce
6TH GRADE NEWS

MATH AND SCIENCE:

ONE SMALL STEP…ONE GIANT LEAP

We choose to go to the moon. We choose to go to the moon in this decade and do the other things, not because they are easy, but because they are hard, because that goal will serve to organize and measure the best of our energies and skills, because that challenge is one that we are willing to accept, one we are unwilling to postpone, and one which we intend to win, and the others, too. ~John F. Kennedy, 1962

It’s difficult for our kids to imagine what it was like before the lunar landing, to imagine a time when going to the moon was one of the greatest challenges set before our nation. We spent some time reflecting on the greatness of landing on the moon by looking both to the past, as well as to the future. What future? What is our “next giant leap”? Mars!

The middle school took our learning out of this world by diving in to a multi-grade investigation of the solar system. Fifth grade stayed somewhat close to home with their research of the Sun, Earth, and Moon. Sixth grade traveled far and wide as they studied the other planets and moons of our solar system, including the dwarf planets (can we please bring Pluto back?). Seventh grade took a deep look into what it would take for humans to live on Mars. Each student and grade shared their findings with one another in whatever manner they found most effective and engaging. We had great fun learning, as the students became the teachers.

LANGUAGE ARTS AND HISTORY:

Sixth graders recently completed biographies of Ancient Greek figures. They researched the lives of various people, from Socrates to Homer to Archimedes, and then created a Google slide magazine presentation of their historical figure. Biography projects are an excellent tool for in-depth learning about the society and culture of a civilization. We were excited to show grandparents our online magazines!  As a celebration of the completion of our Ancient Greece unit, we hosted an Olympics. The Olympic committee chose 6 events for competition, and only chose events from the ancient games. Students reprised their roles in the three city-state debate, so Athens, Sparta, and Corinth competed. Just like in the ancient games, there were no medals; only one winner was declared for each event. The city-state with the highest total score was Corinth. What a great way to end our exploration of Ancient Greece!






Susannah Joyce
6TH GRADE NEWS

LANGUAGE ARTS AND HISTORY:

Our Ancient Greece unit is well underway. Thus far, students have learned the geography of Greece, the city-states of Athens, Sparta, and Corinth; and the Persian Wars. This week, we embarked on a study of Ancient Greek culture, which influenced greatly the development of Western civilization. Learning by stations is an ideal method to grasp the vast cultural content. Also, choice is important in helping students to learn, as we all learn differently. For this lesson, students had to investigate Greek culture as divided into ten separate stations. Students were given the choice to work independently or with a partner, to use their Chromebook to read the material on Google Classroom, or walk the room and use the stations traditionally. Each student chose his or her preferred learning method, and they got to work, reviewing passages and artwork, and responding to questions either in writing or by drawing. Students will apply some of the material learned as they transition into a Ancient Greek figure biography project they will begin researching this week. We are having a grand time studying Ancient Greece!

MATH AND SCIENCE:

Science Olympiad

Our middle school Science Olympiad team traveled to Ruston, Louisiana, to compete in their first invitational tournament. According to www.soinc.org, “Founded in 1984, Science Olympiad is one of the premier science competitions in the nation, providing rigorous, standards-based challenges to nearly 8,000 teams in all 50 states.” Our students rose to the challenge and brought home a 2nd place overall team trophy. We also had 7 first place finishes, 13 second place events, and 3 who come in third. The 23 events span all aspects of science, technology and engineering. Great job, team!

1st Place Events:

Disease Detectives (Chris & Molly)

Dynamic Planet (Chris & Nick)

Fossils (Jonah & Ayres)

Potions & Poisons (Molly & Elle)

Thermodynamics (Nick & Annabelle)

Water Quality (Dawson & Kennley)

Write It Do It (Annabelle & Molly)

2nd Place Events:

Anatomy & Physiology (Emma & Charlie)

Battery Buggy (Charlie)

Crime Busters (Dawson & Kennley)

Density Lab (Staten & Jonah)

Elastic Launched Glider (Dawson & Nick)

Experimental Design (Elle & Annabelle)

Game On (Chris & Elle)

Herpetology (Chris & Ayres)

Meteorology (Jon & Staten)

Mystery Architecture (Kennley & Emma)

Road Scholar (Ayres & Jonah)

Roller Coaster (Nick & Emma)

Solar System (Dawson & Jon)

3rd Place Events:

Boomilever (Staten & Jon)

Circuit Lab (Charlie & Jon)

Heredity (Dawson & Charlie)






Susannah Joyce
6TH GRADE NEWS

MATH AND SCIENCE:

Deal or No Deal?

Sixth grade had to make some quick decisions with our “Deal or No Deal” game on Kahoot! Given the original price and a new deal, they had to determine which was the better purchase. They raced against the clock--and each other--to find the best buy.

LANGUAGE ARTS AND HISTORY:

Prior to the Christmas break, 6th grade began its informational writing unit with a familiar text structure, compare and contrast (they did this with Christmas celebrations of different countries). This week, we continued our unit with the sequence text structure. After reading a short essay and answering questions about the essay’s structure, students chose one of three prompts to draft a short sequence essay. Needless to say, the most popular prompt was how to teach an older relative to play a new video game. I think I know how to play Fortnite now!

Writing these type of essays requires students to use a variety of skills-- planning, organization, and review-- and manage all components of an essay-- topic sentence, a hook, clear presentation of ideas, concluding sentence, and proper writing conventions of spelling, capitalization, and punctuation. Balancing all of these elements is not an easy task, but our 6th graders do it well.







Katelyn Gunter
6th GRADE NEWS

LANGUAGE ARTS AND HISTORY:

Sixth grade is reading “The Gift of the Magi”, the classic Christmas story, this week. It has a heartwarming theme that anyone can appreciate. As the story is written in the early 20th century, the vocabulary tends to be rich with figurative language, but somewhat difficult for 21st century twelve year olds. The students are studying the vocabulary and learning the appropriate meanings in context. After defining the words and writing sentences with them, the students played charades to grasp a better understanding of the words, which also adds a fun element to the learning. Approaching context in a different way leads to gains in comprehension!

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MATH AND SCIENCE:

Baby It’s Cold Outside

It may be cold outside, but things are heating up in 6th grade science! We are studying thermodynamics and properties of heat transfer. We started by formulating hypotheses and debating which type of cup was best for drinking hot cocoa. Of course, we had to test this!

Students were then issued the challenge of creating a device to keep a beaker of hot water warm for 25 minutes. We are currently in the building and improving stages of the design process. Things are getting messy, but isn’t that how great learning should be?

“I liked talking about the new science stuff that we are doing. I am really excited to start it and research the stuff for it with my partner. I am really looking forward to building it too!” ~Annabelle

“The hot chocolate was really fun!” ~Bramlett

“I think that math was a lot of fun; plus we got hot chocolate. It was so much fun, and I loved learning about ratios. I would like to thank Mrs. Ayers for a great week and for the yummy hot chocolate.” ~Ella

“My most memorable learning experience this week was learning about heat and how it moves around. I learned this in Science!” ~Aimee

“I liked making the hot chocolate. It was really good and fun. I want to keep doing more things where we make stuff.” ~Alex












Katelyn Gunter