Humanities

Humanities Week in Review

Week of November 28th - December 2nd, 2022

We have started our novel study, The Giver! The Giver is a very unique novel about a boy named Jonas, who lives in a community with many strange rules. Since starting the novel students have been following along in their own books as the teacher reads out loud. After each chapter, students are to take notes covering the main ideas, looking up unknown words, and making connections. These notes will be vital to help with comprehension. On Monday, we will have our first novel quiz, focused on chapters 1-5. Students will be permitted to bring their chapter notes into the quiz to help.

In Social Studies we completed our notes on British Colonization and the students were introduced to our final task in the unit, 13 Colonies Brochure. The purpose of this task is for the students to demonstrate their understanding of the British in North America and use that information to convince someone to settle in the 13 colonies to combat the French colonization.  They are to communicate their ideas using  persuasive language, in addition to making their brochure visually appealing. Students will continue to work on this project next week too. 

ASSIGNMENTS:

The Giver Comprehension Questions (chapters 1-2) - Overdue

The Giver Quiz- Monday Dec 5th


Week of November 7th - November 11th, 2022

Please check your child’s PowerSchool as we approach Parent Teacher Conferences.

It was a very busy week in Humanities. This week, the students learned about Indigenous Veterans’ Day and also reviewed Canada’s military history.  On Monday, November 8th, students learned about the importance of Indigenous Veterans’ Day and even heard about the most decorated Indigenous war hero, Tommy Prince.  Following this, several classes wrote letters to an anonymous Indigenous veteran.

All 6 classes finished their study of early French colonization (slides and note taking form also in Google Classroom if your child missed a day of these lessons), and were introduced to their new task: creating a journal entry through the eyes of someone we learned about in class. More details about this assignment will be described next week, it is loaded in to Google Classroom as well for anyone wanting to have their child show them what they’ll be working on all next week. 

We are starting our Novel Study of “The Giver” by Lois Lowry next week. Students are welcome and encouraged to purchase their own copies they can underline or highlight in.  

ASSIGNMENTS:

Remembrance Day Poems to Veterans (Postcards) - Due Thursday, November 10th

Letter to an Indigenous Veteran - Based on Individual Class timelines 


Week of October 31st - November 4th, 2022

In Social studies this week, students had their first test on Colonization, Imperialism, and Mercantilism. The tests will be marked and grades will be posted on Powerschool shortly. Students will receive their tests back next week and will be asked to bring them home to show parents and guardians. 

Classes have now moved on to French colonization and will begin to understand the impact it had on existing societies. Students will be filling out a notes graphic organizer as they listen to their teacher provide the important information. 

In English Language Arts, we reviewed figurative language in writing.  Figurative language uses figures of speech to be more effective, persuasive, and impactful.  Students created definitions and created their own sentences using figurative language based on a picture prompt to practice this skill.  After a brief review of Canada’s military history, students are demonstrating their understanding of Remembrance Day and its meaning to them by creating an original poem utilizing figurative language.  These poems will be transferred onto postcards to be sent to Canadian veterans.

ASSIGNMENTS:

Hide Ending Overdue

Figurative Language Poems - Wednesday, November 9th, 2022


Week of October 24th - October 27th, 2022

This week in Social Studies all classes completed their units on Colonization, Imperialism and Mercantilism. On Thursday students were given a study guide that covers the major topics for this test, all materials (including the slides that students were taught from, and their organizer that they took notes on) can be found on Google Classroom. 

Students were given prompts on how to effectively use their study guides in order to ensure they are prepared for the test. Students will be able to bring their study guides into the test to use. The test will be Wednesday, November 2nd.

In Language Arts, students have been working on typing their Hide Ending writing. This piece of writing focused on creating an intense setting to continue the tone of the story. In their endings, students are also focusing on using specific details and vocabulary to build suspense and vivid imagery. Students were provided an editing checklist to go over their work before submitting it on Google Classroom. There will be no more class time to work on their writing and it will be due Monday October 31st. 

** We will be beginning our first Novel Study in mid November, with the book “The Giver”, by Lois Lowry. Many students enjoy having their own copy, if families would like to order one in advance it can be found on Amazon: 

https://www.amazon.ca/Giver-Lois-Lowry/dp/0553571338 

ASSIGNMENTS:

Secret Path Artwork (Overdue)

Hide Ending- Monday, October 31st

Colonization Test- Wednesday, November 2nd


Week of October 17th - October 21st, 2022

Students began working on their first creative writing task, creating an ending to the short story Hide. They spent time in class working on planning out a dynamic setting, before beginning their rough drafts. Their primary focus on this task will be creating an intense setting to continue the tone of the story, and use specific details and vocabulary to build suspense and vivid imagery. 

Over the next week students will finish writing their stories, and then be using an editing checklist to go over their work. They will then make revisions, before submitting their final copies. 

 ** We will be beginning our first Novel Study in mid-November, with the book “The Giver”, by Lois Lowry. Many students enjoy having their own copy, if families would like to order one in advance it can be found on Amazon:  https://www.amazon.ca/Giver-Lois-Lowry/dp/0553571338 

ASSIGNMENTS:

Secret Path Art - Monday, October 17th, 2022


Week of October 11th - October 14th, 2022

Please ensure that you are checking both the Literacy and Social Studies sections of your child’s PowerSchool as there are now several marks posted in both.

This week all remaining students finished their Aboriginal Societies presentations, before the class returned to their ongoing work with the story of Chanie Wenjack. Viewing the music video for “The Stranger” by Gord Downie, each child wrote down as many adjectives as they could to describe the feelings they felt were occurring in the video, as well as within themselves. Students were then encouraged to elevate their adjectives through using thesauruses and conversation. Later in the week all classes read a 1967 news article from Maclean’s Magazine that outlined Chanie’s life, escape, and the tragedy surrounding his loss. Students then began the final task in this study, through watching the full movie of “Secret Path” while creating a piece of art using different perspective drawing skills and their adjectives.

Students were also introduced to the focus of story writing in Grade 7 - Creating suspense! Classes discussed that authors use specific word choice and dynamic settings to make their writing feel more intense, and began to practice recognizing these skills while reading the short story, “Hide” by Rebeca Senese. 

Next week students will continue taking notes when they hear the key elements as their teachers finish reading this short story - and transition into our first fictional writing assignment relate to what they have learned. 

DUE DATES: 

Overdue - Secret Path Sequencing Task, Aboriginal Societies Research booklets, Oral Presentations

Upcoming - Secret Path Adjective Art, due next week


Week of October 3rd - October 6th, 2022

The students continued our diagnostic reading assessments this week with The Core Maze.  This is a three-minute reading test that measures how well students understand what they read silently.  This information in combination with our CARS and STARS reading assessments and an oral reading assessment, will create a very clear picture of your child as a reader.  This information will be communicated to you during our November Conferences along with areas of strength, target areas and how to support your child at home.

After completing their research of the three Aboriginal Societies, students demonstrated their understanding through an oral presentation.  The students included information about the structure of the societies, the role of women, the government structure and decision making prior to European contact.  It is vital to have a strong understanding of this to fully comprehend the impact of European settlers.  Students could work independently, in pairs or some groups of three.  Teachers were looking for content (Does the student speak clearly, with confidence and expression, at a consistent, conversational pace? ) and oral speaking (Does the student speak clearly, with confidence and expression, at a consistent, conversational pace?)  After the presentations, students handed in their scripts for assessment.

In Social Studies, we are wrapping up our Indigenous Societies unit and putting all the information we learned together. Before students watch the music video “The Stranger” by Gord Downie, they received key pictures from the video in no specific order. Students were to analyze what they believe is happening in each photo by making inferences based on what they see and what they already know about the story. Then they were to place the photos in the sequence they believe the video goes in. They glued the pictures into a graphic organizer and then wrote a small summary for each picture detailing what they see in the picture and what part of the story it is telling.  

DUE DATES: 

Aboriginal Research Project, October 3, 2022

Aboriginal Society Presentation Oct 6, 2022 (Oct 11 for 7-3, 7-4)

Secret Path Sequencing Project Oct 6, 2022


Week of September 26th - September 29th, 2022

We recognized Truth and Reconciliation week.  Students were introduced to the idea of reconciliation and they reflected on a time that they learned from their mistakes.  Next, Mrs.Feagan shared an Ojibwe oral history story about Turtle Island.  While listening to the oral story, students created sketch notes in their books of key words, images and ideas.  From there, each student chose a specific theme, memorable or significant moment from the story which they turned into an art piece using oil pastels.  

Finally, on Thursday, the day Dr Martha Cohen School recognized Orange shirt day, students reviewed the origin of Orange Shirt Day and Mrs. Feagan shared her personal connection to residential schools.  The entire school community created orange shirts of our paper to commit to an action of reconciliation.  Please ask your child what “reconcili-action” commitment they made today!

We have completed our benchmark Cars and Stars reading comprehension tests.  As a staff, we will be analyzing the data from the entire grade seven student population and identifying trends (areas of strength and areas to focus directed lessons).  Some students may be missing one or two tests and they will be supported to catch up next week.

Throughout the week, students had class time to work through their Aboriginal Societies research.  The goal was to finish one page per day.  This project will be crucial to the success of the next task, an oral presentation.  This research is now homework if it has not been completed during class time.  Students have their research booklets and the information can be found on the Google Classroom.

DUE DATES: 

Aboriginal Societies Research, October 3rd, 2022 

Turtle Island Creation Story Art Piece


Week of September 19th - September 22nd, 2022

Literacy:

This week Students began their Cars and Stars reading comprehension tests. There are 5 different tests that assess all different areas of reading comprehension. Teachers will use this data to help guide our learning in the classroom.

Social Studies:

Students also began our first Social Studies unit, Aboriginal Societies. Students will be working on a research project learning about the Mi’kmaq, the Haudenosaunee, and the Anishinabe. These are the three aboriginal groups that colonists first came into contact with when they arrived. Students will learn about how the three groups lived their lives, their culture, and core values. 

DUE DATES: 

Smash and Grab Summary Writing -  September 20th, 2022


Week of September 12th - September 16th, 2022 

Literacy:

This week, the students learned how to create effective summaries.  Students participated in direct instruction, teacher lead examples and whole class discussions.  After the main lessons, students watched a short film, “Smash and Grab”, and then using a graphic organizer, collected the most important information.  Using this information and a checklist about “What makes a good summary”, students created a piece of summary writing for assessment.

We also visited the Learning Commons again this week to return, renew and check out new books.  Your child is expected to bring a silent reading book with them to all core classes.  Please ask your child which books they are currently reading.

Social Studies:

Students continued a mixed-media project this week, focusing on the concept of “moments in time”. They learned about the significance of being able to capture a moment, and did a personal reflection on what place, event, or feeling they would try and preserve forever through a photograph. Each child learned several new art techniques to layer, create gradients, and burnish with colours, before developing their own personal polaroid art piece. 

DUE DATES:

Smash and Grab Summary Writing -  September 20th, 2022

Polaroid Art - September 16th, 2022


Week of September 6th - September 9th, 2022 

Literacy:

Our first literacy task of the year was to create a letter to self.  Students created dot jot notes while answering prompts covering a variety of topics.  Next, the students were given a teacher created example of how to construct the letter.  Students created a first draft of their letter and then were given the opportunity to have their teacher edit before completing the final copy which will be sealed away until June 2023! 

Social Studies:

This week students learned about the history and resurgence of Polaroid pictures.  Using this medium as our inspiration, students were asked to remember a memorable time or event.  With this event in mind, they experimented with pencil crayons to create a variety of techniques to mimic watercolour.  Students have created a rough draft of their Polaroid as well as a written explanation describing the memorable time or event.  We will begin our final products on Monday. 

ASSIGNMENTS

Letter to Self – Monday, September 12



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