February is a perfect time to share my love of books with our WMS Wolves. Our speed dating activity builds reading excitement by allowing our students to put their hands on books in a wide range of interest, format and level. Students decide their interests for themselves in an energetic and fun activity promoting the love of the written word. They can rate their date in Today's Meet for a chance to win a small prize in the month of February.
Our sixth grade science classes are finishing their unit on heat energy for standards:
6.P.3.1 Illustrate the transfer of heat energy from warmer objects to cooler ones using examples
of conduction, radiation, and convection.
6.P.3.3 Explain the suitability of materials for use in technological design based on a response to heat
(to include conduction, expansion, and contraction) and electrical energy (conductors and
With many thanks to Brian Hoyle, commercial hot air balloon pilot, the students had a unique, hands-on experience learning the principles of heat transfer through the science of hot air balloons. Take a look at our highlights from the day!
We're back from a long winter break. I like to take some time during the break to reflect on and reset goals for the coming year. What worked? What do I need to change?
Our library leaders provide good feedback on making our school information resource center the best it can be. They provide ideas that I help implement with the help of our quality Media Technology Advisory Committee and the leadership of our Instructional Technology Facilitator, Mr. West. They also keep me focused with suggestions for change. It's our space, and that's an important paradigm to exercise.
Goals reached in the 2014-2015 school year include a successful fall book fair, which was possible from the support of this year's productive PTA. An active, caring PTA makes the difference in providing positive experiences for our students and teachers.
We were awarded two grants this year: A Bright Ideas grant from Wake Electric Partners. We will soon have a 3D printer in our school, which will be implemented through our DigiLit Club. A Snap Circuit set and Makey Makey will be used to teach basic circuitry during this week's meeting. Stay tuned! Through the generosity of donors Elizabeth Caveness from Wilmington, NC, Never Before Funded DYI from New York and an anonymous donor from Apex, NC, Donors Choose gave us the ability to acquire funding needed to implement two ipods for student use in the media center. We will promote the use of these devices to add a new dimension of learning during student projects in the media center.
I worked with our Social Studies department chair, Chelsea Lauck, to construct a tiered model of research expectations using the eWISE method. Our goal is to help our students use questioning, reasoning and organization skills to develop better information literacy. Literacy standards develop over time. They are essential for college and career readiness. At WMS, we strive to provide this structure to help them along their academic journey. We plan to implement this eWISE tiered model with social studies projects in the third quarter.
What does 2015 have in store for us at WMS? We have student research projects using the new eWISE Research Model, hands-on learning with DigiLit and reading promotion plans lined up for January learning fun. Stay tuned to see what we have on the learning horizon!
We had our third DigiLit Club this week. During the Computer Breakdown session, students followed video instructions to disassemble laptops (it's OK, they were already broken!). They learned about the major components and their jobs.
One group found that after reassembling their laptop, it began to work properly. Great job, guys! They documented their learning on a Today's Meet chat.
We have so many great club activities ahead. Keep looking on our Media/Tech site for meeting dates and details.
Mike West, ITF