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Grade Six: Card action

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Card games provided the sixth graders with some good, active practice in ordering integers this week.   Math 1 played Integer War, while Math 2 had number line races.  Both games were based on luck but required thought about the value the cards represented and how they related to others.  Discussion of the ideas ensued, as did laughing.





Happy Valentines Day!

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Grade Six: Days at the races

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Sixth graders got into the Olympic spirit with some integer races.  There was no snow in the halls so there was no slalom or luge run.  However, mathletes moved forward or back, depending on their coaches' rolls of the dice.  The races gave some physical practice of positive and negative, as well as an application of absolute value.




Grade Six: What we are doing

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Sixth graders have started exploring integers--positive and negative whole numbers (and zero!).  Some parents may be more familiar with calling them signed or directed numbers.  We have started with thermometers and temperatures, a use that sixth graders are already pretty familiar with.  Elevators, number lines, and linking cubes will be our next tools to help develop an understanding of what happens with positive and negative numbers before we get into the computation algorithms for them.  A heavy emphasis will be placed on understanding why the “rules” work.  We will finish the unit by reviewing numbers with powers and looking at the standard rules for the order of operations. 

Friday's Conferences

Dear Parents,
Conferences are always a good opportunity for parents, students, and teachers to be sure that they have a common understanding about students’ learning and progress.  Despite a steady line, I was able to meet with many of you (64%, in fact).  Thank you for coming.
If you were not able to talk with me and would like to, please send me a message and we will set up a time that works for all of us.
Sincerely,

Mr. Hughes

Grade Seven: Let's go shopping!

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Seventh graders have been putting what they have learned about percentages to use in real-life situations.  Last week, they went online shopping, ordering expensive watches and sneakers, hoodies and iPhones, and just about everything that a middle schooler thinks they really need.  Fortunately, they had "Mr. Hughes Discount  Coupons" to help them get the discounts they wanted.  There was some disappointment, however, when they discovered the truth that the coupons were not valid and I was not going to place their orders.
In the coming week, we will be doing projects where students will be figuring out sales tax and tips.



Report cards

Dear Parents,
Semester report cards will be sent home tomorrow.  Here is a (not-so-brief) description of what is assessed in math.  
The MYP math program has the same aims as any good math program.  It is designed to prepare students for further coursework in mathematics, as well as for life in general.  The focus is not just on using formulas and finding answers.Students are led to build understandings and to develop skills in problem-solving and decision making. 
The MYP math program was established with four main objectives: ·Knowing and understanding ·Investigating patterns ·Communication ·Applying mathematics in real-life contexts
These objectives are the base of the criteria with which students’ progress and understanding is assessed.  Each of them carries equal weight.
I will explain below how the criteria are used in my classes.
Knowing and understanding.  This is what parents are most familiar with in a math program.  These are the skills, ideas, and concepts that allow students to un…