Friday, December 27, 2013

End-of-Semester School Projects

MCHS students ended the semester with some inventive classroom projects.  Several teachers at the Methodist Children’s Home School challenged students to use their creativity and knowledge acquired throughout the semester as they finished out the curriculum for the semester.

“The semester went well,” said Michelle Arocha, assistant principal at MCHS.  “Teachers have been working to incorporate engaging lessons with more project and group based activities to stimulate today’s learner.” 

In Carmen Rojas’ Spanish class, students chose from a variety of projects related to Spanish countries including writing their own skits or songs, cooking food and creating cultural artisan crafts.  For example, the Spanish II class researched countries and worked together to make a piñata and a Peruvian craft.

In Environmental Systems taught by Angie Hammond, students wrote and illustrated children’s books about the weather, global warming and pollution. Each student had to research their topic and create a story and their own drawings for a 10-page book.   

Middle-school students also participated in end-of-the-year activities. Teachers Amber Foster and Dee Beatty teamed up their English and Social Studies classes for a project on the White House. The English class was in charge of putting together a factual report while the Social Studies class built models of the White House using marshmallows, icing and toothpicks.

Also wrapping up the semester, Susan Roberts’ art class created perspective drawings by sitting in the hallways and drawing their view from their own vantage point.  Steve Kruse’s Ag Sciences class also had their woodworking projects displayed in the front corridor of the school including colorful benches and a handmade rocking horse. Projects such as these continue to help students become more invested in their learning.

“We are raising the level of expectation academically for the students and they have generally responded in a positive manner by taking a more active role in looking at their grades, talking with teachers about their learning, and attending tutoring if there is a need,” Arocha said.  “I have enjoyed seeing this trend develop and look forward to seeing the success of the students as they transition into post-secondary education and the workforce.  We have a large graduating class this year, so the spring semester will be very busy for teachers as well as students as we all work towards the common goal of high school graduation for all seniors.”

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