MS Blazer Buzz 6 April

This week's highlight: Field Day!

Serious competition.  Serious fun.  A bucket of water adds a ton of fun no matter the age!  Middle School students delighted in soaking themselves and each other during the annual field day festivities.  The water balloon station was a favorite as students attempted to strike a balance between gentle catching and powerful throwing to inflict the most water on the other team.  And when all else fails, just wring a sponge over your friend’s head!  Fierce competition ensued with the tug of war challenge.  It was nice to see the students pulling together (literally) to overcome their opponents.  A great afternoon was had by all - thanks to Ms. Atkins for planning such a cool event!

MS Blazer Buzz 30 March

This week's highlight: The Carolina Raptor Center

On Friday, sixth grade students visited the Carolina Raptor Center as part of their science study of birds.  The study of birds is part of an integrated bird migration unit in which students examine birds and bird migration in science, music, art, language arts and math.  At the Raptor Center, students experienced three raptors up close and learned about raptors and the issues facing these birds.  Students also viewed the exhibits of various raptors, thus experiencing a few of the almost 10,000 bird species on earth.  Through the field trip and additional study, students want to find out how to help raptors and other birds, especially migratory birds.  Later this spring sixth grade will “adopt” or sponsor a bird at the Raptor Center, paying for the adoption with money earned from selling pepper and tomato plants they have grown in the Woodlawn greenhouse.  This field trip is integral to student understanding of the natural world as an interdependent and living system, vulnerable to pollution and overuse, and dependent on humans to make the right decisions to protect America’s natural heritage so raptors can continue to soar in our skies!

MS Blazer Buzz 23 March

This week's highlight: Annual Talent Show

Middle and upper school students entertained us with their talent in the Annual MS/US Talent Show on Friday. Jack B. dedicated his song Count on Me by Bruno Mars to his 7th grade class.  Mary H. sang an a cappella version of Pretty Hurts by Beyonce.  Arielle T. and Ms. Rosen performed a guitar duet of Little Do You Know by Alex and Sierra.  Kaitlyn T. belted out Immortals by Fall Out Boy and Taylor L. ended the singing portion with a performance of Not for the Life Of Me from Thoroughly Modern Millie, a 1967 musical.  Lily K. played a beautiful piece called Syrinx on her flute and it was JT on the keys to Chasing Butterflies and The Moccasin Dance.  Their talents never cease to amaze us! 

An added bonus at the end of the show was the lip sync challenge between Ms. Rosen, Dr. Stutzman, and Mr. Barringer.  Ms. Rosen’s familiar Fresh Prince of Bel Air ditty had many singing along to the show tune.  Dr. Stutzman channeled his inner Kermit  as he shared with us the talent he performed at his own high school talent show - The Rainbow Connection - complete with a tennis racket for his guitar. Taking home the award was Mr. Barringer who got into full character as a member of the boy band Big Time Rush and worked the crowd with his rendition of Worldwide.  I anticipate this was the start of a new faculty tradition.

MS Blazer Buzz 16 March

This week's highlight: Stained Glass

The 7th graders have been working on graphing linear equations by using slope and plotting the y-intercept. This type of graphing is called slope-intercept form, and uses the formula y = mx +b. If you want to have a clever way of remembering this formula, just ask any 7th grader to sing you the song (hint: it will remind you of a certain 70's classic by the Village People). As a culminating project, the students constructed stained glass pictures using various types of slopes (positive, negative, zero, and undefined). The students created individual stained glass pictures, labeled with their equations. Then the students worked in small groups to design a picture for the windows in Mrs. Verlin’s classroom in Klein Hall East. Math has never looked so beautiful!

MS Blazer Buzz 9 March

This week's highlight: Diversity Conference

Seven 8th graders attended the annual Affirming Community Together Diversity Conference for area middle school students facilitated by upper school students at Providence Day School. In a "students teaching students" format, middle school students attended sessions on issues surrounding gender stereotypes, discrimination, cultural competence, and multiculturalism. The goal is to teach students to put a stop to bullying and lead the way in creating an atmosphere that is more open and globally minded. Our Woodlawn 8th grade leaders will use what they learned and lead this month’s Middle School Mix It Up lunch. Laine Amortegui shared, "Students reported that being a part of an event where passion about diversity and acceptance of all people was inspiring. They left feeling more positive about the number of individuals they met who are committed to being inclusive despite labels and stereotypes they may face as teenagers headed into Upper School."