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Friday, December 6, 2019

Week of December 9 - December 13

Hello LMS Families;

The next several days bring a sense of anticipation and excitement as our Christmas break approaches. I am so very thankful for our Lander Middle School Family that we have a community that can laugh, play, and learn together. I am ever thankful that I am able to work with you all this year. 

Here is what's happening around LMS:

PIE Meeting: This month's PIE Meeting will be a little different. Please join Mr. Ley and I on Monday, December 9th at 7am for coffee and conversation. Come with your questions and we will provide the coffee.

LMS Student Council will be sponsoring a winter dance on the evening of December 13th. The cost for students to attend will be $3. Concessions will be open.  Eligibility requirements will be enforced - any students receiving a in school or out school suspension this week, will not be allowed to attend.   If you are interested in volunteering, please contact our front office and leave your name and number or you may contact our Student Council Advisor, Mrs. Jensen (cristinajensen@landerschools.org)

LMS Angel Tree: Our annual Angel Tree will be up and running again this year. If you and your family are struggling this year to buy presents, please consider applying for our Angel Tree. Parents complete a short questionnaire about their children's clothing sizes, likes, and needs and we gather the information and put it on a tree in our lobby. Community members then shop for the kids and LMS wraps the presents for the families! All names will be kept confidential. To qualify, you must have a student enrolled at Lander Middle School. Applications can be found in the front office or counseling office. Applications are due on Dec. 6th. Please complete and return as soon as you can. If you have any questions, please email or call Mrs. Jensen at cristinajensen@landerschools.org

Christmas Baskets: If you are worried about feeding your family over the long Winter break, please consider completing the Christmas Basket application from the Elks. Applications can be found at the LMS front desk. This will enable a family to receive a basket full of food for the holiday.


Session III Activities:  Sign ups are now happening in the office for Session III activities; Nordic Skiing (6, 7, 8), Boy's Basketball (7, 8), Art Club (6, 7, 8) and Tech Club (6, 7, 8).  The pay to play fee is $20 and students must have a current sports physical on file to compete in athletics.  Any questions, please contact the office at 332-4040.

LMS Cell Phone Policy:  Starting Monday, January 6, 2020, lunches at Lander Middle School will be a technology free zone.  The LMS cell phone policy allows students to bring their phones to school, they must be silenced or turned off and stored in their lockers during class time.  During lunches, phones will be required to stay in student lockers.  The purpose behind this is two fold.  One - we are seeing an uptick of harassment on social media.  Second - students are often having little to no interaction with one another as they are too busy using their phones.  It also becomes such a distraction that students are not eating their lunch.  LMS is a 1:1 school and students have plenty of opportunity to use technology throughout the day.  We understand that there are times when parents/guardians need to contact their student(s).  Students can check messages during passing period.  Parents can also leave messages at the front office for their student(s). 

Classroom Chatter:

7th Grade:
English Language Arts - In English this week, students are finishing their rough drafts of their essays, beginning to edit, and beginning to work on their argumentative speeches. Over the course of the next two weeks, students will have opportunities to not only finalize their speeches and essays, but also take part in extension activities revolving around debates, logical fallacies, and analyzing historical speeches from the past including Martin Luther King’s “I Have a Dream,” and Lincoln’s “Gettysburg Address.” For those students interested in extra extensions, they will have the opportunity to turn their argumentative projects into a podcast and submit it to the national NPR competition later in the year.

Science- Students have been investigating wave behaviors by investigating different models. We saw how light and water waves are reflected, absorbed, refracted, and diffracted. Now, students are learning about transverse and longitudinal waves with slinkies to observe amplitude, frequency, wavelength, and pitch. It may be a noisy classroom but everyone is engaged and participating in the learning.





Social Studies- We are currently learning about weather and climate in social studies. We are working on using the Quantum Learning Power Pegs to help us memorize the 12 world climate regions and all about each of their characteristics. We’ll be working on data collection, organization, charting, and analysis next week.

Art - This week in Art the students are working on a portrait drawing that will challenge the skills they are working on mastering to create shapes that appear to have form. They are applying the elements of art and principles of design in order to create realistic looking drawings. This is a difficult process and I appreciate the students hard work. Most of them are stepping outside of their comfort zone and embracing the challenge!


6th Grade Social Studies:  The 6th graders in Mr. Swift's Social Studies class are currently learning about the causes of the Civil War and are now diving into the major battles and turning points during the war. Students will compose a cause and effect summary at the end of the unit identifying major causes that led to the civil conflict and its effects on the nation during the time period. Students in Mr. Swift's FLEX group are participating in debates. Students have been assigned a topic and must defend a claim with evidence on that particular topic. Examples include: school uniforms, children using social media, free school lunches, internet censorship, later start times for school, and setting time limits on video game playing. The students will research their topic and provide evidence to support their stance. The topics should make for some fun debates!

8th Grade:
English Language Arts: Mystery. Crime. Suspense. Our next unit explores true crime novels and the mystery genre through the anchor text The Borden Murders: Lizzie Borden and the Trial of the Century. Students are working together as a team of detectives trying to solve the puzzling question of who killed the Bordens - a wealthy family who lived in small-town Massachusetts just years before the turn of the 19th century. The book artfully presents information on the case including newspaper articles, police reports, first hand testimonies of neighbors, key witness accounts, diaries, and forensic evidence. As students immerse themselves in the case, they will learn about issues such as bias, sensationalism, evaluating news sources, the power of public opinion, motive, and much more. 8th-graders will conclude the unit before Christmas Break by creating their own group pod-cast of an historic unsolved mystery; researching background, facts, evidence, and hypothesis of what actually occurred. Some of these unsolved mysteries may include Amelia Earhardt, Joan Benet Ramsey, The Lindbergh baby, Glenn Miller disappearance, etc. Fun learning!

Science: We’ve been studying the cardiovascular system which includes the heart, blood and blood vessels. We’ve been learning about the different blood types and who can donate/receive from each one. Students might be asking what their blood type is because they want to be AB+! On Wednesday we had an amazing guest speaker, Jim Hutchinson, a physician's assistant from the Lander Medical Clinic. Students that hunt brought in animal organs and Wyoming Custom Meats donated cow hearts. Jim spent the time dissecting and discussing the organs with students. It was an incredible experience for us all. We will spend the remaining time before Christmas learning about the Nervous and Respiratory systems. 




8th Grade Spanish:  We've been working hard on learning all of the new vocabulary including weather & clothing, telling time, calendar/dates, and clothing and classroom items. We did some fun review including a new game called "Corre en Circulos" (see attached photos) - ask your kid about this one! Learning new vocabulary is a BIG job and takes a lot of time and practice... more time than we have in class! Please have your child practice vocabulary on their own at home, either using Quizlet, self-made flashcards, online games (available on my website at this link) or we can print flashcards from school for your child to use. Quizzing with flashcards or playing the Quizlet and online games together can be a great way for you to help your child succeed in Spanish!   We also had a visitor drop in this week! We welcomed Cascabel the Elf on the Shelf to our classroom! He is here for the month of December to keep an eye on all of the 8th graders at LMS and make sure they make it on the "Nice" list. We are also using him to learn words to talk about location (next to, under, etc.) Ask your child how we are learning these phrases!





PE: Students are assessing their current level of physical fitness with the help of various apps and technologies. We are creating month long fitness plans with a focus on the FITT principle; frequency, intensity, time, and type of exercise. Students will then compare and contrast the technologies that we’ve used and evaluate them for validity as it relates to the product’s ability to increase fitness levels.


6th Grade Language Arts: 

Sixth grade students are diving into new nonfiction texts. Across this unit, student reading is focused on developing a solid set of nonfiction reading skills

  • discerning central ideas
  • summarizing to create a concise version of a text
  • synthesizing within and across texts
  • building vocabulary
  • growing ideas
  • reading critically to question the author’s point of view and perspective.
To start a conversation about reading at home, ask your child what book they are reading and why they selected it.



Creative Foods:  This week students learned about the function of ingredients in baked goods and the different leavening agents used such as yeast, baking soda and baking powder. They started out making a yeast bread and made cinnamon rolls this week over a three day period. Day one was making the dough, day two was making the filling and constructing the cinnamon rolls, and day three was baking the rolls and glazing them. They all did a great job and had fun baking!




Extras:

Climb Every Mountain:  Last week 13 year old Willow Wells traveled to Tanzania for the experience of a lifetime. Along with climbing Mt. Kilimanjaro, Willow installed Solar Lights at a local school with Project TSEHIGH. Willow worked with our Student Council and Lander community to raise thousands of dollars towards the solar lights. Willow was able to check summitting the first of the seven highest mountains in the world off her bucket list. We are so incredibly proud of Willow and her outstanding accomplishments. #lightthepath #cleanenergyforall



LMS Runners compete at XC Nationals:  During the cross country season, Coach Misty Atnip always tell the kids that if they finish in the top 10 at conference, we could look at taking them to a regional meet in the area. However, this year the one that is usually held in Billings didn't happen, so she dug a little deeper. It became obvious that a few LMS runners had times that were comparable to those that compete at the National Youth Cross Country Meet. Reed McFadden and Ameya Eddy committed to training an extra two months and signed up.Their training included some not so pleasant running weather. On Saturday, December 7th in Knoxville, TN, at Victor Ash Park the LMS runners laced up their running shoes for one more time. In the Boys' 13-14 4K race there were 250 racers. Reed placed 28th with a time of 14:21. The girls' 11-12 3K division had a field of 240 runners. Ameya placed 58th with a time of 12:48. Congratulations Reed and Ameya!




Have a great week!
Julie

Tuesday, December 3, 2019

Week of December 2 to December 6, 2019

Good morning, LMS Families!

I hope that everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving Break.  It was nice to have a few days off to recharge and recalibrate.  I enjoyed my time off with family, watching 80s movies, playing games and of course cooking!!  It was time well spent.  There are 13.5 days until Christmas Break and we will be getting a lot done in terms of learning.  Keep checking parent portal to stay informed about your child's progress in class.  

What's Happening:

LMS Angel Tree:  Our annual Angel Tree will be up and running again this year. If you and your family are struggling this year to buy presents, please consider applying for our Angel Tree. Parents complete a short questionnaire about their children's clothing sizes, likes, and needs and we gather the information and put it on a tree in our lobby. Community members then shop for the kids and LMS wraps the presents for the families! All names will be kept confidential. To qualify, you must have a student enrolled at Lander Middle School. Applications can be found in the front office or counseling office. Applications are due on Dec. 6th. Please complete and return as soon as you can. If you have any questions, please email or call Mrs. Jensen at cristinajensen@landerschools.org

Christmas Baskets: If you are worried about feeding your family over the long Winter break, please consider completing the Christmas Basket application from the Elks. Applications can be found at the LMS front desk. This will enable a family to receive a basket full of food for the holiday.

Student Council Game Night:  Student Council will host the monthly game night this Friday, December 6th from 6pm to 8pm.  Bring a board game to share.  Popcorn and refreshments will be provided.

Winter Dance:  Student Council will host the LMS Winter Dance on Friday, December 13th from 6pm to 8pm at LMS.  The cost for admission is $3 and students must have met the eligibility requirements in order to attend.  Hot dogs, nachos, and soda will be for sale in the concessions stand.  Parents - if you are interested in chaperoning, please contact Mrs. Jensen at cristinajensen@landerschools.org.

Session III Activities:  Students can now sign up for Session III activities in the front office.  Session III activities are Nordic Skiing (6, 7, 8) and Tech Club (6, 7, 8).  The cost to participate is $20 and students must have a current sports physical on file to ski.

Nordic Skiing Parent Meetings:  There will be meetings for those parents of students who wish to participate in Nordic Skiing in Session III.  Meetings are Wednesday, December 4th at 5:15 p.m. and Thursday, December 5th at 5:15 p.m.  Meetings will be held in the LMS Commons and you only need attend one.  Any questions, please contact Coach Missy White at missywhite.mw@gmail.com 

PIE Meeting:  This month's PIE Meeting will be a little different.  Please join Mr. Ley and I on Monday, December 9th at 7am for coffee and conversation.  Come with your questions and we will provide the coffee.

Activities this week:

12/3:  8th Grade Girls BBall vs. Wyoming Indian, 4:00 pm
12/4:  7th/8th Grade Girls BBall vs. Arapahoe (rescheduled game), 4pm
12/5:  LMS Wrestling @Rawlins Quad, 3:30 pm
12/7:  7th Grade Girls BBall B Team Conference Jamboree @Lander, TBA
12/7:  7th Grade Girls BBall A Team vs. Lovell/Worland @Worland, 10 am
12/7:  8th Grade Girls BBall B Team Conference Jamboree @Cody, TBA
12/7:  8th Grade Girls BBall A Team vs. Lovell/Worland @Worland, 10 am
12/7:  LMS Wrestling Conference @Thermopolis, 10 am

Have a great week!
Julie


Tuesday, November 26, 2019

Happy Thanksgiving!

Hello LMS Families;

Since it's a short week, we will have a short blog.  The regular weekly blog will be back next week.  We will dismiss tomorrow at 12:20 p.m.

At this Thanksgiving season I would like to take a moment to express how grateful I am to be associated with the students, staff, and parents at Lander Middle School and Fremont County School District #1.  As an administrator I am thankful for students who cheerfully work hard to learn, parents who encourage, and teachers who are dedicated and truly care about each child. I am thankful for our stakeholders, our School Board, and our District Staff that help to make  Lander Middle School a great place to be. I am truly grateful for the opportunities I have experienced here over the past six years. Thank you for your help, support, understanding, and friendship. There is no other place I would rather be.   I want to share my gratitude and thank you for being such an important part of our children’s lives. This is a wonderful time of the year to get together with friends and family to celebrate and be thankful for all the wonderful people in our lives. On behalf of the Lander Middle School staff, I would like to thank you for your continued support and wish you all a safe and happy holiday. We will see everyone back here on December 2nd.  Have a wonderful Thanksgiving. 

Warmly,
Julie