September 2

Welcome Back, Pirates!

Welcome to the 2015-2016 school year at Shallotte Middle School!  We are looking forward to a great year, and I can’t wait to hear all about what you’ve been reading over the summer.  We’ll be getting started with our Edublogs posts soon, and I’m looking forward to reading what you have to say.  To the 6th and 7th graders who will be new to Edublogs and an online reading journal, I hope you enjoy creating and writing your very own blog as much as we’re going to enjoy reading it!  To the 8th graders who are returning to pick up where you left off at the end of school last year, I can’t wait to see what you have to share with us this year.

Happy blogging!

May 17

Almost There!

Well, we’re down to the final weeks of the 2014-2015 school year, and it won’t be long until we’re all enjoying the summer break from school.  Although it feels like school should be over already, we still have a lot of work to do.  This week, we’re finishing up with Animal Farm (7th grade) and Anne Frank: The Diary of a Young Girl (8th grade), and we’re beginning our EOG preparations.  There are also many end-of-the-year activities going on around SMS, including the athletic banquet, the band/handbells concert, and a Memorial Day celebration this week.  Next week, we’ll all have Monday off to celebrate and commemorate the Memorial Day holiday (to learn more about the history of Memorial Day, click here).  When we return to school on Tuesday, May 26th, we’ll all be refreshed and ready to begin our EOGs and show everyone what we’ve learned this year.

As the year winds down, remember it won’t be long before our 8th graders are in high school and our 7th graders are in 8th grade, so enjoy these days and make lots of happy memories to take with you as you head off to your summer adventures.

January 29

Look at the Progress You’ve Made!

As I was looking over the posts and comments from your blogs this week, I was really excited to see the progress you’ve made in your writing since you began your blogs last September.  Your posts are longer, include more detail and reflection, and have fewer and fewer grammatical errors each time.  Your comments are coming along, too, although there are still a few of us who need to work on elaboration, and a few others who still haven’t quite mastered some pretty important grammar rules!  That’s okay, though, the more you practice your writing, the better you’ll become at it.

If you haven’t taken the time to go back and read over your posts, I encourage you to find a few minutes to go back and do that.  I believe you’ll be surprised at how far you’ve come since September and excited about how far you’ll go before we reach June.

I’m really looking forward to reading what’s happening with your each of the books you are reading, as you progress through them. Keep up the great work with your posts and comments, and Happy Blogging!


November 9

Coming Up in November

This week will be another 4-day school week, as we pause on Tuesday to remember all of the veterans who have served our country over the years and to thank them for their service and sacrifice.  If you don’t know the history of Veterans’ Day (or Armistice Day, as it was originally called), you can earn some extra Pirate Bucks by doing a little research and writing a brief essay on the history of the day. See me for additional details on this learning opportunity.

On the 19th of November, which is only a few short days away, we will be taking our 2nd stems test of the year.  Remember, our stems tests are cumulative, which means that they cover all of the stems you’ve had up until this point, so don’t forget to go back and review the stems from previous lists.  The 7th grade test will cover lists #1 – #7, and the 8th grade test will cover lists #1 – #12.  NOW, is the time to begin your review; don’t wait until the last minute!

Also coming up before the Thanksgiving break, we will have our annual SMS Turkey Trot on Tuesday, November 25th. Bring in nonperishable food items (canned and boxed food items that don’t need to be refrigerated) for donation to local food pantries and families in need.  Homerooms are having a competition again this year to see who can bring in the most items, and the winning class will receive a prize.  The 8th grade homeroom teachers are even offering a homework pass to every student in the class if that homeroom collects the most and wins the competition.  So, bring in canned and boxed food items, or even monetary donations, to contribute to this annual SMS community service effort.

Looking forward to another great week at SMS … :)

October 19

Moving Quickly Toward November

It’s hard to believe we’re only a few days away from the end of October and the end of the first nine weeks.  If you have assignments you still need to turn in, now would certainly be the time to do that!  Also, if anyone has decided to do an “Extend My Learning” project, those will need to be turned in on or before October 27th.

Your weekly blog posts are coming along nicely, and I am excited to see how much they have improved in only five short weeks of posting!   You all are reading some great books, and I look forward to reading your posts and comments each week to learn about more great titles.  I am learning about a lot of books that I would like to read as a result of reading your posts, and I hope you are adding books to your “Books to Read” list each week, too.  Everyone should have at least five (5) weekly posts, so, if you are behind in your posting, you need to catch up this week.  There will be a minimum of seven (7) posts for this nine weeks, and those posts together will count as one small project grade.

Keep up the great work, and happy posting!  MSB

October 5

The Week Ahead

This week, we’ll be having our first stems test of the 2014-2015 school year.  I hope everyone has been studying their stems because the test is cumulative, which means you’ll need to know all of the stems going all the way back to List #1.  Also, you’ll have to do more than just define the stems, you’ll have to APPLY that knowledge! Study hard for Wednesday’s test, and I know you’ll all do well.

On an unrelated note, I’m very excited about all of your reading blogs. You all are doing a super job reflecting on your reading and sharing your thoughts.  It is very interesting to see everything you all are reading, and, from your posts, I’m finding a lot of books to put on my reading list!  I’m also pleased with many of the comments you are making on your classmates’ posts.  Some of them are very insightful.  Keep up the good work, and we’ll be back in the computer lab on Thursday for this week’s posting.  Don’t hesitate to post outside of class, and work on the look of your blogs, too!


September 11

Great posts!

Well, we were successful in setting up our student blogs during class yesterday, and I have been enjoying reading all of the things that have been posted already.  It’s exciting to see what you are reading and to read what you have to say about the books you have chosen.  So far, there have been some great summaries and recommendations, and I hope all of you will get ideas about what to read next from the posts of your classmates.  So, keep reading, and keep posting! You’re doing an awesome job!

September 9

Let’s See IF This Works

I’m hopeful that we’ll be able to set up student blogs while we’re in the computer lab. The plan is to have each of you create a blog that you can use for weekly reading responses and book discussions.  So far, I haven’t been terribly successful in linking student users to the aig cs @ sms class blog, so let’s see IF this will work! Keep your fingers crossed!