Mr. Recine’s Classes

12/10/12

Hi everyone,

The second trimester of the year is under way and the holidays are rapidly approaching.  The upper school students (Grades 4-8) are continuing their work developing and strengthening literacy and math skills.  Coupled with our classwork, students have been using two educational and supplemental websites.  Khan Academy is a website where students can work further on math skills and can also watch videos that explain concepts a little more in-depth to help them along.  The more problems they solve correctly, the more difficult the problems become.  The 2nd site (Membean) is for students in Grades 6 & 8.  Membean is an interactive and extensive website designed to help students build and strengthen their vocabularies via fun activities, videos, games, and timed quizzes.  Book reports have continued into this trimester and will continue for the rest of the year.

As holidays approach, I hope everyone finds time to enjoy family, friends, and life.

Happy Holidays!!

–Mr. R

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9/12/12

Hello everyone,

Welcome back to Eastern Point!  This is going to be a great year.  For my 4th-8th bunch, this trimester in English Language Arts, we will be working on the writing process, mechanics, and forms of writing.  We have begun working on Narrative Writing, with a focus right now on the process of journaling.  Also, everyday when students enter the classroom, some form of writing practice will be waiting for them either in the form of a worksheet or sentences on the board.  The repetition of this activity, I hope, will help students become stronger and more confident writers.  Moving into October, we will be looking at different pieces of literature revolving around the Salem Witch Trials.  I thought this would be a fun thing to do during the month of October, and we might even be able to squeeze in a trip down to Salem to watch an actual reenactment of one of the trials.

We are using the Saxon Math program this year again, which I am thrilled about.  It’s a strong series that utilizes repetition and review as a form of reinforcement for math facts.  Something new I am trying this year is collecting student work (whatever stage it is in) at the end of every class.  I then mark the work for incorrect answers and it is up to the students during the following class to review, revise, and receive my final approval before they can continue or move on to a new lesson in their textbooks.  This process, rather than me just giving the answers to the students, I believe will help them most in the long run.

As always, if you have any questions or concerns about anything, please let me know.

–Mr. R

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5/15/12

Here are the guidelines for the Red Team’s final ELA project due Thursday May 31st:

Two Options to Choose From:

(1) Choose a Greek, Egyptian, or Norse myth/story that you enjoy.  You will be creating a graphic novel of the story using at least 30 individual frames of pictures and dialogue.  You may use more if necessary.  Along with this, you will need to hand in a one page summary of the original myth, in your own words answering questions like “What happened?” and “What were the important moments, characters, etc.?” *You will not be graded on your drawing abilities, but on how well you stay true to and depict the story through your pictures and dialogue and also, your creativity.

[OR]

 (2) Choose a Greek, Egyptian, or Norse myth and give either a modern-day retelling or a spin to it.  You can set it wherever you’d like (Gloucester, even).  The new telling of the myth should be at least 4 pages long and you need to include an additional page summarizing the original myth in your own words.

Students will be graded on the following:

  •  Adherence to and completion of the project guidelines.

<AND>

  • Creativity.

 *Please let me know if you have any questions.*

–Mr. R

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5/4/12

Hey everyone,

The year is rapidly winding down (wow, I cannot believe it!).  Our Spring Arts Festival is coming up on Saturday May 19th and I hope to see you all there.  Bring your friends!  This time around, the students of EPDS will be working with a script adapted from the storybook and songs of Free to Be…You and Me.  The plays centers on uniqueness, individuality, acceptance of others, self-esteem, confidence, and togetherness: six themes I believe our school fosters incredibly well.  I hope you can all make it, because the kids are fantastic.

After that, both the Red Team and Blue Team will be working on one final ELA project before the year wraps up.

As always, thank you for all that you do.

–Mr. R

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3/4/12

Hi all,

Here’s an update from the Upper School:  The Red Team is continuing their study of world mythology.  We have moved on from the Greeks to discover the lands and stories of the Ancient Egyptians and the Norse people.  We will begin working with Cape Ann Museum this month on researching local Gloucester folklore, including the infamous Sea Serpent as well as the Witches of Dogtown.  The Blue Team will be continuing grammar work.  We will begin working with conjunctions and interjections soon, and also work on writing mechanics.  Both teams have also begun working with a new vocabulary series called Wordly Wise, and I am incredibly excited to see the results.  I think the new books will really benefit the students’ vocabulary growth.

Once again, thank you for everything you do.

–Mr. R.

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2/1/12

Hello everyone,

I apologize for not updating sooner,  so let me tell you what the upper school has been doing/will be doing within the upcoming months.  Math will continue as usual.  The students have been making great progress in their textbooks.  In English Language Arts, the Red Team has started studying Greek mythology paired with a reading of the Percy Jackson book, The Lightning Thief, by Rick Riordan.  I am will be supplementing our reading with actual Greek myths and projects to enhance and extend our reading.  The Red Team is currently working on creating trading cards having to do with various gods, goddesses, heroes, monsters, etc.  We will also be studying the myths and stories of other cultures (Egyptian, Chinese, Norse) and will even touch upon local Gloucester folklore which will be coupled with visits to the Cape Ann Museum beginning in March.  The Blue Team has just begun a study in grammar.  We have started with parts of speech.  This grammar study will also encompass writing mechanics, as well as a study of fairytales and folktales with activities that will also aid in strengthening grammar and writing skills, eventually leading us into poetry.

–Mr. R

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12/1/11

December is under way which means the holiday season is rapidly approaching and so is our Winter Show.  As I’m sure you all know by now, the students will be performing a production of The Jolly Christmas Postman.  Everyone has been working hard and I know they cannot wait to share the show with you all.  Can’t wait to see you all there!!

–Mr. R

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11/2/11

Halloween is behind us, and just ahead, the end of the first trimester.  In English Language Arts, both teams will be continuing to work with writing mechanics.  The Blue Team will also continue with Spelling, and I hope to start reading “A Christmas Carol” with the Red Team in December.  In terms of Math, both teams will continue working in their Saxon textbooks, along with supplementary work inside and outside of the classroom.  Both teams of students have a Math test next Thursday (November 10th).  Also (to all Red Team members), do not forget that our trip to Camp Kieve is rapidly approaching.  I know it will be both an amazing experience for the boys and also a great “foot in the door,” so to speak, for our school’s future relationship with the people at Kieve.  I am looking forward to it.

In Drama, I will be utilizing a script adapted from the children’s storybook The Jolly Christmas Postman by Janet & Allan Ahlberg.  The story is warm, funny, musical, and a great way to kick off the Holiday season.  I think so anyway.  The students will begin work on the show this coming Friday.

–Mr. Recine

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10/26/11

Sorry for the delay in uploading these, but the Blue Team’s spelling words for this week are: column, stalk, comb, chalk, hymn, solemn, thumb, small, vision, and (a repeat from last week) pamphlet.

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10/17/11

Update: Below is the Spelling List for this week (10/17-10/21)

telephone, orphan, knew, knelt, knocked, pamphlet, knuckle, dolphin, knife, photograph

This week the Blue Team will begin receiving Spelling Words.  They will receive a list of ten words each week, and during the week, will participate in activities both inside and outside the classroom for homework, helping them learn the words and their spellings.  On each Friday for as long as we are working with spelling lists, the students will have a test on the ten words they received in the beginning of the week.  To supplement their studies outside of the classroom, I will be using a website called Spelling City.  The website is http://www.spellingcity.com/.  Unfortunately, I was not able to create a link so that you can go straight to the website from this page, so you will have to copy and paste the web address in a new window.  I want the students to use this site to help study whatever spelling words they might have for the week. How they can do this is: on the main page of the website, you will see a box titled “Start Here,” where the students can input their spelling words (you can change the amount simply by clicking one of the numbers in blue below the list).  After inputting all of the words, click on the green button that says “Play a Game.”  This will take you to a new page with a list of “Free Activities” and “Premium Activities.”  You will not be able to enjoy any of the “Premium Activities,” but the free ones are yours to discover.  The games range from a simple spelling test to printable handwriting worksheets.  All of the games utilize the spelling words you inputted on the main page of the site.

I think this website will offer a fun and interactive way for the students to learn their words.  I will be going over these same directions with the students today in class.

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10/4/11

September has ended, and with it, our first month of school.  As we dive headfirst into October, I’d like to review the past few weeks.  Both teams of students have been a pleasure to have in class.  They have been completely willing to join me in the pursuit of knowledge both in Language Arts and Math, and have not shied away from the countless questions I have sent their way.  As we look forward to the coming weeks, the 6-8 boys will be continuing to work with Lois Lowry’s novel The Giver, searching its depths and their minds for an answer to one particular question: is there such a thing as a perfect world?  The boys and girls in Grades 3-5 will be finishing their study of Roald Dahl’s book The Witches, and will start vocabulary work shortly, and with it, the coming of Spelling tests.  In Math, both teams will be continuing to work in their Saxon books, along with hands-on activities to bring the math they are learning in their textbooks out into the real world.  Both teams have an upcoming Math test (their first of the year) next Friday, October 14th.  They will be well prepared for the test by the time it arrives.

As always, if you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact me.

All the best.

–Mr. Recine

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9/10/11

Updates from the Classroom: The upper school boys (Grades 6-8) have written literary reviews for the book they spent some time with this summer: Tangerine by Edward Bloor.  Here’s what they had to say:

Paul Fisher is a young boy in the 7th grade.  He lives in Lake Windsor Downs, Florida.  I really liked the story because I always thought there was a good part coming up next.  I also loved the theme of the story: a nerd who loves to play soccer but struggles to play because of his eyesight.  This book is a very good book but wasn’t my favorite.  I thought there were a few parts of the story that were a little weak.  I think the author achieved most of his goals but could have worked a little bit harder in a few points of the story.  Lastly, I would recommend the story to kids who play soccer or to kids who like to read about real things that actually can happen.

–Mark

On a scale of one to ten, the book was a six.  I thought the beginning of the book was alright, the middle was good, but the very end was awful.  It just seemed like a lot of people either died or were going to prison.  My least favorite part was the very end at the homeowner’s meeting.  It just seemed like Eric and Arthur get caught for stealing.  Their parents try to bail them out.  Then Arthur goes to prison for murder, and Eric gets in even more trouble, and might be joining Arthur.  I did like the book right at the part when Paul’s (main character) soccer team tied in the final game to win their division, but after that, it went down hill.

–James

I am writing a review for the book Tangerine.  It was a well-thought book, but had a not so good storyline.  I believe that the author achieved his purpose in the book, but the writing was not put together in the best of ways.  I also think that the way the events were plotted was very dull in a lot of words.  I would recommend it because it is a very good read.

–Stephen

On a scale from 1-10, I rate this book a three, because the book had information but it was a little boring.  The book wasn’t really my kind of book.  It was kind of boring.  I didn’t like the book and I wouldn’t recommend it.

–Noka

On a scale from 1-10 (ten being the highest), I would rate this book an 8.  I liked this book because of the moral or message: learn to stand up for your beliefs.  My favorite part in the book was when Tino and Victor stood up and avenged Luis’s death by assaulting Eric and Arthur.  I also liked how Paul overcame his fears and helped them escape.  The author definitely achieved his purpose, which I believe was to teach kids a valuable lesson.  The writing in this book was powerful and interesting.  I would recommend this to friends for all of the above reasons.

–Patrick

So there you have it.  The boys hope their reviews are informative for anyone who might be thinking about picking up this particular novel to read. 

Keep checking back here for more Updates from the Classroom.

–Mr. Recine

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Leave a comment

2 Comments

  1. Kathi Turner

     /  November 3, 2011

    Thank you for these informative updates. Should the blue team still be using the spelling website?

    Reply
    • Mr. R

       /  November 3, 2011

      When they receive new spelling words, yes they will be using that particular site.

      Reply

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