MS Blazer Buzz 3 Nov

This week's highlight: Arugula Challenge

Sixth grade students, Gabriella and Kaitlyn, took Mrs. Denham’s “Arugula Challenge” on Friday.  Students harvest many kinds of lettuce in their gardens and are currently growing about 6 different varieties.  While many people enjoy a bit of arugula in their salad, eating a whole leaf is quite peppery according to the students.  AJ picked a chocolate pepper, but I have a hard time believing that it tastes like chocolate.  After seeing the faces after the arugula challenge, I doubt anyone is up for a chocolate pepper challenge!

MS Blazer Buzz 27 Oct

This week's highlight: All Things Haunted...

Seventh and eighth graders dressed for a ghoulish evening in the Lodge this weekend. They kicked up their heels and danced the night away to their favorite songs. From the Stay Puft Marshmallow Man to a few vampires - costumes were certainly creative! Stinson Hall, built in 1836, served as the perfect backdrop for a chilling, haunted house experience. Walking with trepidation through the creaky, old house in the pitch black night, student clung to one another as faces appeared in the windows and people (or ghosts) pounded on doors. Screams could be heard all over campus. Thanks to the teamwork of LEAD, it was a haunted night to remember!

MS Blazer Buzz 20 Oct

This week's highlight: Go Green!

Woodlawn middle school students were going GREEN last week as they participated in the annual spirit week festivities leading up to Homecoming and Woodlawn Day! The spirit of sustainability was the theme of spirit week this year. Kicking off the week by blending in with nature, students were quite creative in dressing the part to make connections that would remind everyone of the importance of sustainability. Many students dressed as farmers and teachers as they honored the leaders of sustainability, and everyone got in the spirit of recycling clothes on Thrift Store Thursday! In true Woodlawn spirit, we saw a lot of green hair during spirit week, and I can’t think of a better reminder to go green and think about sustainability. With our fifth graders leading our recycling efforts on campus, our K-8 students tending their plentiful gardens, and our commitment to using recycled art materials, we tend to GO GREEN around Woodlawn in more than one way!

MS Blazer Buzz 13 Oct

This week's highlight: Sweet or Tart?

Mrs. Denham: garden coordinator, science teacher, and now...apple expert!  Students in grades K-6 had the pleasure of tasting three different varieties of mountain apples from SkyTop Orchard.  Mrs. Denham set up an apple station in the garden and shared many apple facts with students.  Rain rolled in that afternoon, so the sixth grade students had to move their taste testing inside but that didn’t spoil the fun!  Students reported that the Jonathan apples were firm, sweet, and crisp.  Stayman apples received descriptions such as tart, crisp, and juicy.  And the third contender, Blushing Gold, was described as crunchy and sweet.  Round one of apple tasting involved observing, tasting, and describing the flavor and texture.  Round two involved students trying to identify the correct apple simply by taste.  Students were good stewards of the Earth as they composted the apple cores in our Woodlawn gardens. There was not a leading favorite among the three as apple fans had a hard time choosing their favorite.  But one thing is certain, apples seem to have a way of bringing smiles to many faces!

MS Blazer Buzz 6 Oct

8th Graders Experience 16th Century America

How do our Woodlawn 8th graders dive into a unit about 16th century America?  Oh, they are not just going to read about European explorers and Native Americans.  No…you see they would rather throw an atlatl, bake cornbread, and start a fire using flint and steel.   In an effort to recreate life in 16th century America, students spent the day outdoors engaging in activities similar to those carried out by European explorers and Native Americans.  By participating in this role play, Woodlawn students were able to relate to the efforts, struggles, and determination of European explorers and Native Americans in 16th century America.  

Teams of students dispersed in an early morning scavenger hunt that included a question about The Scarlet Letter, word games, milk jugs, hidden tins, and quotes from Ralph Waldo Emerson's essay "Nature.”  The fog that rolled in overnight made for even more interesting conditions on the hunt, which was the highlight of the day for many.  Hank and Axel earned the best time for the hunt: an astounding 6 minutes!

Morgan and Mayella especially enjoyed cooking with the key ingredient of the colonial times: corn.  Students made three batches of cornbread and honey butter from scratch.  On the nature walk, students donned pokeberry war paint, spotted garden spiders, orb weavers, and yellow argiopes, and tasted dog fennel and onion grass.  Students tested their skills throughout the day.  Sabrina was able to lift a huge bin of bricks much faster than a team of four others because she set up more pulleys and increased her mechanical advantage.  Garrett, Leila, Emma, and several others were able to start a fire using only flint and steel. And after perfecting her technique, Mimi displayed the best atlatl throwing pose while Morgan threw her atlatl the furthest.  

The day culminated with a drum circle in the amphitheater.  Fifth grade buddies joined in the drum circle and shared in the rhythmical and harmonious end to the day.