Step right up! Come one, come all to the 7th grade Probability Carnival! The seventh grade math students have been busy as we wind down to the end of the school year. We have been in our probability unit discussing the difference between simple and compound probability. To help the concepts sink in more deeply we finished our unit with some project based learning.The students first needed to brainstorm ideas for their own games that were based on probability and not skill. From there they had to calculate and compare the theoretical and experimental probabilities of their games. What better way to test out their probability than to host a carnival for the school! The STEM Lab was filled with dice and spinners, candy and bubbles, and lots of learning. And oh boy was fun had by all!
Ms. Forrest, Middle School Teacher, 7th and 8th grade math
Our 7th graders do! This past week they have been conducting labs to see the impact of height and mass on the amount of potential energy stored in an object. Understanding that to calculate the potential energy of an object you multiply the mass times the gravitational acceleration (9.8m/s) times the height, they first isolated the height of the drop of a ball as an independent variable. They dropped a tennis ball from 50cm, 75cm, and 100cm then recorded the height of the bounce. After the collection of their data, they used their information to calculate the potential energy and analyzed their data to draw a conclusion on the impact of the height of the drop on the amount of potential energy.
Next, the 7th graders decided to isolate the mass of the object as the independent variable and designed another experiment. This time they dropped a tennis ball, ping-pong ball, and golf ball from 100 cm and measured the height of the bounce. Again, they analyzed the data, calculated the potential energy, and drew conclusions. Their 21st Century Skills were put to the task as they thought critically, created an experiment, collaborated with their lab partners, and communicated their results! Way to go, 7th Grade!!
By: Yvette Stuewe, MS Science
The Eighth Grade Play is a St. John’s Tradition. That’s right. Our Eighth Grade Literature teacher, Mrs VB, was in the Eighth Grade Play way back when – back when our kindergarten teacher, Mrs. Cariker’s, father (Mr. Paul Koehnke) was the Eighth Grade teacher and the director. Since 1991, Mrs. VB has been the director, and she is ready to present her 29th production – “Lost in Space and the Mortgage Due!”
Do you love the battle between Good and Evil. This year we have it all. A dastardly villain trying to take advantage of a poor “humble” couple – Grandpa and Grandma Humble. A Hero – Space Cadet Bob of the 25th Century – who will save a damsel in distress. Evillina Craven (the creature no man can resist) attempts to assist our villain, Commander Snidely Backlash, but their evil plot is thwarted when Bob’s rocket takes off. That’s all we can share. Come see the show on Thursday night, May 23, at 7PM in the Auditorium. Admission is free!
View award winning video by student Paul Schulteis https://youtu.be/Bm-d-onb1g8
After completing our social studies unit on Medieval Europe, students in the seventh-grade were tasked with demonstrating their understanding of the role of a medieval manor by constructing a feudal manor using Minecraft. Minecraft allows students an opportunity to work on mathematics, visual arts, storytelling and digital learning in an engaging environment. Some students gain their first experience learning how to code while others continue to hone and advance their coding ability.
Class time was given to students to design their manor. Some students used iPads and others used their laptops. Once the Minecraft design was created students then had to record a four-minute video explaining what life on a manor was like. Many students added a final touch by incorporating medieval music to their video.
The projects the students turned in this year were amazing and needed to be viewed by others.I choose to submit several student projects into the 53rd California Student Media Festival (CSMF) competition. Student Paul Schulteis ended up winning in the middle school division of Curricular Humanities. His storytelling, creativity, and technical expertise designated him as the winner of this category. Paul and his project won St. John’s $250.00 to put toward future technology school projects. Technology is evolving everyday and having a state-of-the-art STEM lab allows our students to explore, build and create so that they have an opportunity to develop a passion for science, technology, engineering and math.
By Angie Bender, Middle School Teacher