Back to school

Back to school

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

2017-2018 School Year

“Do not train children to learning by force and harshness, but direct them to it by what amuses their minds, so that you may be better able to discover with accuracy the peculiar bent of the genius of each.”

Engaged vs Entertained

During my introductions of the class expectations and course description, I told my students that I wanted them to be "engaged" in their work for English class. We discussed the difference between "entertained" and "engaged".  When a person is entertained, they are passively watching a presentation. When a person is engaged, they are actively participating. Even if a person doesn't like a specific topic, they can still participate in learning about it. 

During their introductory speech, I asked each student to think of one thing that they were good at. It could be a sport like baseball or football, a talent like drawing or reading, or a personality characteristic like kindness or empathy. The students were very thoughtful about their answers. 

I am looking forward to getting to know each 7th grader and discovering the uniqueness that each one of them possess. Let's be engaged in our learning!

Monday, January 9, 2017

2016-2017 School Year

The greater danger for most of us lies not in setting our aim too high and falling short; but in setting our aim too low, and achieving our mark.

Surviving seventh grade English can be quite challenging so I prepared a list to help seventh graders navigate their way. 
  • Be prepared with paper, sharpened pencils, books; stow that phone away!
  • Be on time in assigned seat; give me notice if you are leaving during class.
  • Raise your hand if you have questions. Be patient; I will get to you asap.
  • Respect the desks, computers, books you are using.
  • Ask for missing assignments if you are absent (band lesson, school activity, sickness).
  • Do your homework on time! Study your spelling! Finish your worksheet! Lateness is costly.
  • Read AR books each quarter. This reading is worth 10% of total grade! “B” can go to “C”.
  • Do your own work. Check handbook for cheating policy. I may give you a zero.
  • Ask permission to use bathroom, go to office/nurse, get drink of water.
  • Use your best handwriting and spelling skills. Be a good communicator.
  • Check your grade regularly. I will update my grade book on Fridays.
  • Be curious. Be thoughtful. Be open-minded. Be courteous. 
To the parents:  I send out a weekly email to parents including a spelling list and other assignment sheets as need. So, parents, please check your email. If you wish to get a hold of me, please send me an email ( I will answer you as promptly as possible.I do not update this blog on a regular basis as I have found that parents check their email more often.

I am looking forward to teaching these seventh graders more about literature, grammar, spelling, and writing this school year.