Humanities Week in Review
Week of October 12th - 15th, 2021
This week in Humanities, students worked on two new tasks. The first is a story writing unit, but in grade 7 we are focusing on some important skills. Students are working on intensifying their writing using suspense! We are teaching students to create dynamic setting, using foreshadowing and very intentional word choices. To introduce these skills we began the short story Hide by Rebecca M. Senses, which students have been loving. We are working on pulling out clues, setting and important details from the story.
In Social Studies, we are wrapping up our Indigenous Societies unit and putting all the information we learned together. We watched the music The Stranger by Gord Downie and created a web of adjectives describing everything from the video. The video focused on Chanie Wenjack, a student who died trying to escape Residential School. Students then focused on one scene from the video to create an art piece incorporating the adjectives from the video.
Secret Path Art
Every Child Matters Article Summary (Overdue)
Pre-Contact Indigenous Societies Research (Overdue)
Week of October 4th - 8th, 2021
This week in Humanities students worked on using their summarizing skills after reading the article, “Every Child Matters” (can be found on Google Classroom for reference). Previously we practiced this skill after viewing, and learned how to transfer it to non-fiction writing as well. Students read, annotated, pre-planned, and created a final piece of writing that included an editing stage as well.
Students continued their Aboriginal Societies research work as well, completing their investigation of three key Indigenous groups that lived on the Eastern coast of what we now call Canada. Through this research each child learned to use headings, key terminology, and paraphrasing to isolate specific information.
Both of these tasks are now completed in terms of class time. Many students have handed them in, and all need to be submitted to Humanities teachers by Wednesday, October 13th at the latest.
Every Child Matters Article Summary
Pre-Contact Indigenous Societies Research
Week of September 27th - October 1st, 2021
We paused our research of Indigenous societies to recognize Truth and Reconciliation week. Students were introduced to the idea of reconciliation and they reflected on a time that they learned from their mistakes. Students created a written response and shared how this moment caused them to grow and change. 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.
On Wednesday, we learned three core parts of the Indigenous Worldview. We continued practicing the skill of summarizing key ideas and information. This information connects to the impact of Residential schools on the culture of Indigenous communities.
Finally, on Friday, 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.
Turtle Island Creation Story Art Piece
Week of September 20th - 23th, 2021
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.
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.
Smash and Grab Summary Writing, September 20th, 2021
Week of September 13th - 17th, 2021
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.
Students did a mixed-media project this week as well, 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.
Smash and Grab Summary Writing, September 20th, 2021
Polaroid Art, September 16th, 2021
Week of September 7th - 10th, 2021
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 2022!
Students also attended an orientation at the Learning Commons since it will be open for student use this year. Each student checked out one or two books. Students will bring their reading books to every Humanities period.
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.
Letter to Self, September 10th, 2021