Week in Review: Middle School English Edition

It was a Middle School takeover this week in the Matthews Library. The 6th and 8th graders were in with Mrs. Eustace for English fun! The 6th graders were learning how to find resources for their Passion Projects via the library catalog, Google searches, and databases. Throughout the week, they were finding books in the library and sourcing information from them.

The 8th graders were in as well, researching the pros and cons of competitive sports. Students learned about finding strong websites as well as summarizing and adopting formal tones. They also learned about counter arguments, which led to an interesting activity where students argued whether Skittles or Snickers is the better candy. We think there was more argument in favor of Skittles.

On Tuesday we hosted Music in the Library featuring the High School Jazz Band, fresh off of their successful performances at the Forum Music Festival. On Wednesday we had our monthly Book Club, which you can read all about here.


Some ASE campers learned that the library is the best place to go if you’re on a scavenger hunt!

April Book Club

We had our monthly book club on Wednesday, where students and faculty talked about the books they’ve been reading. Ms. Melinson started us off with Cake, a pretty book that’s part memoir and part recipe book. She also talked about Norwich by Karen Crouse, the sports writer who visited a few months ago and spoke. Since April is Poetry Month, Ms. Melison talked about one of our new books of poems, Wild Beauty. And to round things out, Ms. Melinson talked about some weird books: Three Bags Full (legit laugh out loud funny) and Sourdough (It glows in the dark!)

Héloïse started reading Down and Across, which she loves because the characters are weird, but a good weird. She also mentioned starting O! Pioneers and liking it so far and finishing Women & Power. Josh read what what he described as possibly the best series ever – Red Rising. He said it was amazing and recommends it for Sci-Fi fans. He also read The Man in the High Castle and enjoyed its interesting depiction of alternate history. Mrs. Eustace chimed in that for those who like alternate history, they should check out Wolf By Wolf – conveniently available at your local school library.

Ms. Batarseh read Abarat and loved it and the accompanying pictures because “words evoke pictures, pictures evoke words.” She mentioned to watch out for the paperback version of the book as it doesn’t have the illustrations, which really benefit the story. Ms. Batarseh also talked about Richard Wilbur’s New and Collected Poems, which she said she comes back to every few years and enjoys his simple use of words.

Alyssa started reading Beautiful Creatures, which she said is so different from the movie, but she loves it. Becca started The Hero With A Thousand Faces, a book about how mythology has evolved through time, and thinks it’s going to be an interesting read. Mr. Wells said he was looking for books to tie into the Sophomore Project for the 10th graders next year and so he was reading Enrique’s Journey, recommended by Doctora Portillo.

For more information about the books we talked about, check out our Goodreads page.

Free audiobooks!


Sync Audiobooks for Teens is giving away two books a week starting today, April 26th. Every Thursday until July 25th, download two free audiobooks at www.audiobooksync.com. You’ll have one week to download the titles before new books appear. You can also sign up for email and text alerts to notify you of new books ready for download.

Who doesn’t love free books? Happy listening!

Week in Review: Poem in Your Pocket edition

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It’s been go, go, go in the library this week! Starting with Monday when Ms. Nellis brought in her 9th graders to work on their World Heritage Site projects. Then the library played host to a presentation on Queer Voices for Mr. Hinojosa’s 12th graders as part of their Laramie Project unit. Speakers from the Sacramento LGBT Community Center spoke about their experiences and services they provide at the Community Center. Later in the day, a group of high schoolers helped out kindergartners in the Winters Library with Poem in Your Pocket activities: cutest day of the year.

On Tuesday Ms. Nellis’ class was back for more World Heritage fun. Tuesday was also Mrs. Eustace’s birthday, and she was very excited to have ice cream cake. Wednesday was the all-school Poem in Your Pocket Day. Students with poems in their pockets (or on their phones, computers, or brains) shared poems in exchange for a piece of candy. After lunch we were visited by the Four Horsemen of the Poem-acalypse to share their poems and after school some middle schoolers came running in to read their poems before it was too late.

At Thursday’s “C” day meeting, a panel of seniors talked to the juniors about the college application process and their college choices. And Friday was another work night for The Glass Knife staff as they worked hard on completing this year’s book.

Week in Review: Sophomore Symposium edition

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This week started out with the Sophomore Symposium presentations. On Monday David presented on the UC Davis MIND Institute, Spencer on Prohibition, Jackson M. on Climate Change, Anu on the Evolution of News and the Sacramento Bee, and Becca on Sacramento and Flooding. On Tuesday Larkin presented on Sacramento’s Reliance on the Busy Bee, Jackson C. on the Golden 1 Center, Heloise on the Delano Grape Strike, Darius on Tech Companies and Sacramento, and Alyssa on Street Art. Congratulations to the Top 10 and to the Top 3, Larkin, Jackson M., and Spencer!

On Thursday Mr. Crabb’s 7th graders were in to find research books relating to their March Madness fiction books. Topics included refugees, war, women’s rights, and more. Thursday was also pitch day for the 6th grade Passion Projects. Students presented to their classmates and the Country Day community and received feedback on their project ideas. The pitches included a business plan for a breakfast stand, a presentation on the Ancient Beringians, the chemistry of baking, cooking around the world, and a Harlem Globetrotters board game. On Friday the Glass Knife had their first of many work nights to come.



Week in Review

It’s been a quiet week in the Matthews Library. On Monday and Tuesday the 10th graders were in to learn about parenthetical references and MLA formatting for their Sophomore Project papers. The Glass Knife had another week of board meetings to determine what will go in this year’s book. On Thursday they looked at submitted art pieces, but no peeking! On Friday, the 6th graders submitted their Passion Project proposals. Ideas include a mixtape based on the history of Broadway, a dating app for sharks, a popsicle stick building based on Disney animation, and a website based on the evolution of cats. Look for more updates as these projects progress.


Legit bubblewrap is becoming harder to find in packaging (with air pockets being the common replacement) so when Ms. Melinson received some in a package, she offered it to students as a quick stress reliever.