While the High School is away…the Middle Schoolers will play! This week the High Schoolers were away on their trips, which gave the 6th graders a chance to really get to the know the Matthews Library.
All this week, the 6th graders had their library orientation where they learned how to read a shelf, find some of our more unusually labeled books, arrange books according to the Dewey Decimal System, navigate databases, and evaluate websites for content, authority, bias, and design. Student then got to show off their website evaluation knowledge with a game of Friendly Feud.
Also in the library all week were Mrs. Eustace’s 8th graders. They were in to research for their Salem Witch projects, which will culminate in an Ignite Speech next week.
Monday started off with Ms. Eustace’s 6th graders in for some Independent Reading. Ms. Melinson showed students how to search for books using the catalog and then gave a them a tour of the fiction collection.
Our Summer Reading raffle winners were picked this week. Congratulations to Mattias M., Annabel L., Rebecca T., Ryan X., Manny B., Chase C., and Kaityln D.! Rebecca, come by the library for your prize! On Wednesday we had our first Book Club of the school year, which you can read about here.
On Friday the Sophomores took a walk around the track while discussing their potential Sophomore Project topics and big questions they’re hoping to answer. This helped determine how much information they knew about their topics and served as a good listening exercise as they had to explain their partners topics rather than their own.
Ms. Eustace’s Dystopian Studies elective was in the library on Wednesday for mini book talks on lesser known dystopian works before checking out books. After getting their books, they spent the rest of the period reading.
Also on Wednesday, Julie Checkoway (author and SCDS parent) spoke to the Sophomores about her thoughts on how to begin researching for their Sophomore Projects. Julie emphasized organizing their notes, backing up work regularly and in different places, and not being afraid to fail at first and put yourself out there.
On Friday Mr. Crabb’s History classes were in to learn how to focus their Sophomore Project topics and posing a research question. Friday was also the first Glass Knife meeting where students determined what jobs they would have for this year’s book.
It’s been a rather quiet week here in the Matthews Library as we head into that time of the year: grading the Sophomore Project citations!
On Tuesday and Wednesday the library was jam packed with students registering for AP exams, which start next week. Tuesday was also College Announcement Day where the Seniors wore their college gear and announced where they’re going next year.
Thursday was a good day for bubbles. Bubbles are lent to students as a way to de-stress from their exams. Friday featured Ms. Nellis’ 9th graders in to work on their European Colonial America research project.
Ms. Melinson has been away this week celebrating her daughter’s wedding festivities. Filling in for Ms. Melinson has been yours truly, assisted by Clippy. He helps out with tech issues, but he’s also pretty territorial when it comes to office furniture. He’s got some interesting redecorating ideas and strong feelings about plants.
Clippy has been a bit wound up since his tenure at Microsoft unraveled. Hopefully Ms. Melinson will return before he gets too bent out of shape!
This week, Ms. Nellis’ 9th grade History classes visited almost every day to work on their Pre-Columbian Americas research projects. On Monday Ms. Melinson shared with them how to start an outline for the presentation component of their project and the rest of the week was spent looking at sources and researching indigenous cultures.
Monday was also National Puzzle Day which meant is was time for Ms. Melinson to bust out the puzzle! This year’s puzzle features an elaborate library that even includes a puzzle in the corner.
Wednesday featured a guest speaker, New York Times sportswriter Karen Crouse. Ms. Crouse spoke to the members of the Octagon staff about her new book, Norwich: One Tiny Vermont Town’s Secret to Happiness and Excellence, as well as how she got started in sports journalism and some notable stories from her career.
Thursday the Glass Knife held a meeting where they planned for the upcoming Valentine’s Day bake sale – look forward to that happening on Monday, February 12th!
Friday was the all-day Sophomore Moratorium. Students spent the day working on their projects and getting help from teachers while also listening to presentations on outlines, rubrics, and how to make a presentation.
This week started out with a Glass Knife lunch-time literary contest. The staff were given a list of prompts related to this year’s theme (of which we were sworn to secrecy and cannot reveal) and directed to write in 10 minute intervals. Congratulations to Gabi, Joe M., Zihao!
On Wednesday we had our monthly Book Club, which you can read all about here. Thursday featured tea in the library to warm us up. Thursday also found Ms. Melinson visiting Ms. Nellis’ 9th graders to discuss their Pre-Columbian Americas research projects. Ms. Melinson shared the research guide she made for them and then talked about how to find sources.
This week the library was overtaken by middle schoolers and their various activities. On Monday Mrs. Eustace’s 6th graders were in for the Olympics Book Extravaganza. Students chose olympic-themed books and started reading – unless they had a foul and ended up in the penalty box!
On Tuesday we had tea during elective to help keep us warm. On Tuesday and Thursday Ms. Monahan spoke to the 8th graders about their digital portfolios and how to set up a Google site for it. Mr. Grunst’s 8th graders were in the library on Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday to find books and research for their severe weather projects.
On Friday we were host to Professor Jan Goggans from UC Merced. Professor Goggans spoke to the 8th graders about Dorothea Lange and John Steinbeck and the relationship between their work and its representation of the Great Depression.
This week the library saw a mix of work and play as we rolled out Wintercraft for middle school advisories and played host to various classes working on projects. On Monday we had our monthly leadership lunch, which featured Emily talking about her experience of becoming an Emergency Medical Responder and performing a trauma exam demonstration.
Tuesday featured The Glass Knife holiday and gift bake sale, which helps fund The Glass Knife retreat in January. Tuesday also saw a double dose of Mr. Crabb, with his History classes in to continue working on their Middle East Cultural Fair projects and then his advisory for Wintercraft where they made magnetic bookmarks.
Wednesday and Thursday saw two more advisories in for Wintercraft, Mrs. Eustace’s and Mrs. Monahan’s. We also had Dr. Fisher’s History class in to work on their notecards and prepare for their interviews by contacting possible interviewees for their Sophomore Project.
Rounding out the week was Dr. Whited’s Biology class to work on their genetically modified foods projects and Mr. Hagmann’s English class to work on an extra credit assignment.
Happy December! We’re zipping right through this year! The week began with a Glass Knife meeting with staff planning for the Speakeasy and the upcoming gift and bake sale (at morning break and lunch time on Tuesday, December 5th). Midweek saw Mr. Crabb’s history classes in the library working on their Middle East Cultural Fair projects. The week closed with our annual lunchtime Speakeasy, which featured students and faculty sharing poems – including some originals. This year’s event also included a musical performance by Chardonnay and Lily, who played the Beatles’ “Eleanor Rigby” and Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah.”
We’ve been hard at work prepping for Wintercraft and Middle School community service – watch for your advisory’s turn in the coming weeks!
On Monday we had a Leadership Lunch featuring Amalie talking about her experience over the summer as part of Team USA’s swim team. In her presentation, Amalie highlighted her team and the importance of supporting each other. On Tuesday our favorite Saint Bernard, Quaffle, bestowed us with her happy, fluffy presence. On Wednesday Dr. Fisher was in with his 10th graders to cover proper interviewing techniques so the kiddos are prepared to conduct interviews for their Sophomore Projects. The week ended on a thankful note as the high schoolers and their advisors feasted on turkey sandwiches, sparkling cider, and apple pie in the high school quad.