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Middles 2011-2012
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Middles Bike Day

On Friday, May 25, 2012, the Middles team will be biking from Barton to Lake Nokomis.  Bring a helmet, a lunch, water bottle, and a bike lock. The trip is approximagely 6 miles / 45 minutes.  We will leave around 9:15 a.m. and return about 1:30 p.m.  WE NEED ADULT VOLUNTEERS to bike over to Lake Nokomis with us and 1-2 parents to drive lunches and playground equipment to/from the lake.  See the Information and Permission form for details.

SEE  BIKE DAY PHOTOS...

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Wolf Ridge Photos

If you have any photos from the Wolf Ridge trip (4/11-4/13, 2012) to share, please contact kevin@kinneavy.com to arrange to get them posted.  All shared photos will be posted here...

Math Masters Competition

The competition is on Sat., April 28, at North High School (1500 James Ave. North Minneapolis, MN 55411 - map). Kids show up around 8:30 a.m.  The competition starts at 9:00 a.m., and runs until about 1:00 p.m. Pizza is served for lunch!! We will have 4 more practices before that, Wed. and Thurs., April 18 & 19 and April 25 & 26. I need to create teams so need all kids to show up and/or communicate with me. I've been thrilled with the attendance, still about 40 kids!! Any parents have any questions, feel free to contact Katrina (Katrina.Belding@mpls.k12.mn.us).

MCA Sampler

We have been looking at some of the MCA sampler questions in math and will continue to do so over the next couple of weeks. Students will be taking the tests in April. Students can practice at home. Here is a link about how to access sample questions online: http://www.mnstateassessments.org/resources/Manuals/ItemSamplers_QuickGuide.pdf

Here is a printable pdf version on a 5th grade sampler, complete with an answer key: http://www.mnstateassessments.org/resources/ItemSamplers/MCA/MCA_Math_Grade5_ItemSampler.pdf

We thought some parents might be interested in these resources to help their children prepare for the MCAs. As mentioned above, we are working on this in school; it is not a requirement that students do this at home. We do not want this to be an added source of stress or anxiety for your student.

More Wolf Ridge Notes

We leave at 7:30 on 4/10 and we should be back on Friday, depending on traffic, close to 4:30. Obviously, the bus drivers will do the best they can. Helping kids/bus drivers/teachers to unload the buses when we arrive really expedites going home.

We also eat lunch when we arrive around noon, but we stop for a snack that will be provided along the way.

No need for a swimming suit.

Wolf Ridge INFORMATION

There are several people involved in making Wolf Ridge happen this year besides teachers and it made our jobs easier, but still there are loose ends:

MEDICAL ALERTS: IF YOUR CHILD TAKES MEDICATION, PLEASE SEND IT WITH FULL INSTRUCTIONS ABOUT DOSAGE IN A ZIPLOCK BAG, COMPLETELY IDENTIFIED WITH YOUR CHILD'S NAME. I NEED THIS ON WEDNESDAY MORNING. THANK YOU! (We have a large number of children coming on this trip, and the number of needs is daunting, so any help you can provide is ESSENTIAL.)

WOLF RIDGE STORE: IF YOUR CHILD IS CONSIDERING BUYING SOMETHING FROM THE STORE, PLEASE SEND THE MONEY IN AN ENCLOSED ENVELOPE WITH HIS OR HER NAME ON IT AND THE AMOUNT. (There may be a list of items for sale on the Wolf Ridge website. I WILL COLLECT IT WEDNESDAY MORNING BEFORE GETTING ON BUSES.

CLOTHING: PACK TONIGHT! DRESS YOUR CHILDREN FOR WINTER - BOOTS, MITTENS, HATS, WARM COATS, WOOL SOCKS AND MULTIPLE PAIRS OF SOCKS - IT MAY BE COLD, WET AND WINDY. HELP YOUR CHILD TO STAY HAPPY AND WARM. IF YOU PACK CLOTHING/BEDDING IN A PLASTIC BAG FOR YOUR CHILD, MAKE SURE IT IS LABELED WITH HIS OR HER NAME - FIRST AND LAST. THERE WILL BE LOTS OF white or black PLASTIC BAGS being packed on the buses. SEND AN EXTRA ONE IN CASE OF RIPS.

WEDNESDAY MORNING AT 7:30: the students will load their clothes/bedding under the bus before coming up to class. They should keep their carry-on bag (small backpack or tote with a book, drawing pad, cards) with them to take later on the bus. After loading under the bus, the students will come to the classroom, where they will check in with me. After that they can head back down to one of the three coach buses. REMEMBER NO ELECTRONICS EXCEPT FOR actual CAMERAS.

STUDENTS CAN BRING VIDEOS TO WATCH ON THE BUS, BUT THEY MUST BE PG, SO NO ONE IS OFFENDED. WE ALL WATCH THE SAME VIDEO. USUALLY, THERE IS TIME TO WATCH TWO.

PLEASE PICK UP YOUR CHILD ON FRIDAY. ALL CHAPERONES WILL BE READY TO GO HOME.

THANKS FOR DOING YOUR PART TO MAKE OUR TRIP FUN AND SUCCESSFUL.
 

Wolf Ridge Packets

The Wolf Ridge packets went home in backpacks today! The yellow sheets are due back at school, completely signed by parents and (children, on one of the sheets.) by NEXT MONDAY, MARCH 19th with a check [to Barton] for $132. We need to know which students are coming, in order to organize the dorm room and class groups, etc. Our team will do this after school on Monday. Feel free to send the packets back as soon as possible. Keep the blue sheets; information needed at home.

If you would like to chaperone, fill your section out as well. I'll take that as a final commitment to the three-day trip, once that is returned by next Monday.

Thanks for your quick action. We're looking forward to a great trip. The class is excited! We hope all students are able to come.

Math Masters Schedule

This is the math masters schedule for before spring break. We'll meet in room 202, but will split into 2 different groups - 5th/6th.  All practices are from 2:00-3:00 and still students are encouraged to come to as many practices as they can, but if there are prior obligations, we can work around that.

  • Wed., Mar. 14 and Thurs., Mar. 15
  • Mon., Mar. 19 and Thurs., Mar. 22
  • Wed., Mar. 28 and Thurs., Mar 29  *** CORRECTED ***
Math Masters

Katrina just found out the date for the Math Masters' Competition, which is April 28th. It is a combined 5th and 6th grade competition, and it is fun. She is already to begin preparing students with Math Masters' practice sessions beginning as early as tomorrow after school, Thursday, March 8th from 2-3. Students will need a ride home at 3.

There is no need to make a commitment yet, but eventually Katrina will form teams for the April competition. Anyone who enjoys math or wants to learn higher level math skills is very welcome to come. This is a good chance to have fun with math and learn more at the same time.

Katrina is also looking for parent volunteers willing to coach our budding mathematicians during the sessions. She is planning on practice sessions, probably Wednesdays and Thursdays after school from 2-3.

Everyone who has participated has had a lot of fun, whether he or she is strong in math or not. It's also a fabulous opportunity to get better at math and work as a team.

Please contact Katrina if you would like to help out: Katrina.Belding@mpls.k12.mn.us

Wolf Ridge Pacing Schedule

Here is the pacing schedule for going to Wolf Ridge:

  • Wolf Ridge packets will go home with students on March 13th.
  • They are due back the following Monday, March 19th.
  • Once we know which students are committed to going, we'll put together dorm rooms with student input, attempting to have at least one, two or more friends together in a room.
  • We'll organize the class groups, usually groups of 12 -15 students.
  • We'll organize the evening class schedule for students.
  • We'll organize food for the bus rides.

Parents who have expressed a desire to chaperone will also need to let us know by March 19th, that you are firmly committed to going for the entire three days. Because of WR space constraints, we can only accommodate so many add'l adults, but we will do our best to bring everyone along who wants to join us. All of this depends on how many students are coming, so that is why we need to know by March 19th. We will do our best to let you know if we can accommodate the large number of parents interested, because we know you need to make plans as well. It's just a bit complicated. Thanks once again to our highly engaged and generous Barton parent community!

We also are very close to deciding a price, which right now looks to be under $140. We just received a very generous donation to our trip from a Barton family, which has reduced the cost even further.

A correction on some misinformation: Wolf Ridge charges teachers to go for the three days, but Steve picks up the cost for that. While teachers give up a lot of time to prepare and spend much unpaid time at WR, they do not pay for their own trip costs.

Wolf Ridge Trip Parent Meeting

The Bugle has been announcing the Wolf Ridge Parent Meeting in the last few issues. We are meeting in the media center, tomorrow evening February 28th, beginning at 6:30 P.M. The weather is a little iffy. At this point we're still having the meeting, but of course, be careful driving. You can always check out the website for Wolf Ridge Environmental Learning Center, located in Finland, Mn. We are looking for parent volunteers who can come for the entire three-day trip for consistency and scheduling of groups of students.

Thanks to everyone who has expressed interest or has already made the commitment to come for the three days. We leave Wed., April 11 and will return Friday, April 13 by 4:30ish.

Wolf Ridge Trip Information

Check here for the latest information about the Middles trip to the Wolf Ridge Environmental Learning Center -- more information about the trip will be posted here as it becomes available. See the pictures from the Middles trip two years ago.

Read, Explore, Create

Reading a book has become a very creative experience in a number of Twin Cities Metro Area schools, due to a special program that received funding from the Minnesota State Arts Board Arts Learning Program.

Barton 5th- and 6th-grade classes with Mary Austin, Katrina Belding, Becky Glass, Matt Linman and Kathy Scoggin are participating in Read, Explore, Create (REC) this winter! Read, Explore, Create is a partnership between Milkweed Editions, a publisher of books for kids and adults, and COMPAS, which brings artists into schools. Through REC, students read a Milkweed young readers novel, meet with the book’s author in-person or via a live web chat, and explore the book’s themes with a COMPAS artist.

The classes selected Milkweed’s The $66 Summer written by prize-winning author John Armistead. Most of The $66 Summer takes place in Obadiah, the small town where thirteen-year-old George stays with his grandmother, working in her store and spending his off-hours with two friends. An unusual trio in 1950s Alabama—George is white; Esther and Bennett are black. The three roam the countryside together, sneaking onto an unfriendly neighbor's land to go fishing and looking for lost treasure. Conversation between the three often turns to Esther and Bennett's father, Staple, who mysteriously disappeared—some say he just ran off—four years ago. Solving the mystery of Staple's disappearance becomes the focus of The $66 Summer, forcing the teenagers to reassess their dreams and confront the racism that surrounds them. On Tuesday, February 7, students will have the opportunity to meet with John Armistead via a webchat. They will hear about his life, writing career and ask questions.  Read More...

Learning Works -- for 6th Graders

The Blake School in Hopkins offers a program to 6th graders called Learning Works. It is a summer, and part of the year, academic program that offers students additional challenges and enrichment. A representative for Learning Works will be at Barton this Thursday afternoon to speak to those interested 6th graders. The program involves a substantial time commitment, that includes six weeks this summer and weekends during the year. Something to consider.

More info is available on the Learning Works website. Meri Gauthier, the art teacher, is the contact person for the Barton students.

Roller Garden Field Trip

The Middles will be taking a field trip to the Roller Garden on Friday, December 23, 2011.  See the Information and Permission form for details.

Wolf Ridge Trip

Wolf Ridge is a trip to an environmental learning school for three days, April 11 - 13th. The middles go every other year up to Wolf Ridge, which is located near Finland, in northern Minnesota. The cost of the trip varies with gas prices and any grants we're able to get. Right now, the cost is hovering between $150 and 160. We're asking students to start saving for the trip. If you know of any source for money, grants, etc. that could reduce the overall cost, please contact me. We don't want the cost to prevent any student from coming. We'll also be hoping for many parent volunteers. Save the date! We need lots of chaperones. It's a fun experience for everyone.

Luna Negra Dance Theater Field Trip

The Middles classes will be taking a field trip to the Ordway on Tuesday, October 25, 2011.  See the Information & Permission form for details...

Zoo Field Trip

The Middles classes will be taking a trip to the Minnesota Zoo on Friday, September 30, 2011.  This trip will be FREE to all Middles students courtesy of Target Corporation.  Be sure to get your permission forms in!

See photos from Mary's class...

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