Saturday, September 29, 2012

Identifications: The First of Many!

This week will commence our study of themes in American History.  The first nine are revealed to students this week.  By the end of the year, students will have over 75 in their arsenal.  The study of themes in American History is an essential component to assembling meaning in history and connecting it to the modern setting.  Students will take these themes and compose the first of many identifications that will be written over the course of the year.  For this week, student breakdown of work will resemble the following schedule:
Monday- Introduce the first four themes in class.  Students should review these themes for homework and arrive to class with any questions about them.
Tuesday- Conclude the theme lecture.  Students should start seeing if they could match up anyone in chapter 17 and 18 to the themes.  Example:  Who would represent the theme of might versus right?  Who could represent the theme of the hands that built America were not always the ones who held its wealth?
Wednesday- Take questions.  Introduce identifications.  Six identifications need to be written by Wednesday, 10.10.  Introduce the prewrite for students and start the process of writing.
Thursday- In class conferences while students write. 
Friday- In class conference while students write.  Friday is the last day I will read any rough drafts. Students should make sure that 6 identifications are ready to be submitted by Wednesday.

If I can be of any further assistance, please do not hesitate to contact me.
All best.
Mr. Kannan

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Immigration Blues: Hues of 8.2 Perception

Click here for the Immigration Bag of Websites

 Once you are done viewing the bag of websites, click here for the Immigration Task Assessment.

In the upcoming week, students are going to be working towards a stronger grasp of immigration.  Our task will involve students examining different internet sources regarding immigration concepts and then assembling a powerpoint/ googledocs slide show regarding a choice of assessment topic.  The breakdown that I envision:
Monday, 9.24- Finishing viewing Bag of Websites.
Tuesday, 9.25- Explain Immigration Task
Wednesday, 9.26- Friday, 9.28- Work on Immigration Tasks
All immigration tasks need to be shared and/ or emailed with me by Saturday night, 9.29, at 5:00 PM.  Students can work alone or with a partner on this task.

In the final analysis, the intention is for students to be able to gain greater insight into the connective thread of immigration that binds us all.

If I can be of any further assistance, please do not hesitate to contact me.
All best.
Mr. Kannan

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Textbook reading, money, and 8.2 Social Studies: Compatriots in scholarship

It was wonderful to see so many of you at Curriculum Night. I was fortunate to speak, albeit very little, about the small part I play in your child's pursuit of scholarship. To all of those who attended and gave your time and attention to our team's presentation, I am humbled by your dedication.
This week is another challenging one for our students.  Monday and Tuesday night should be spend ensuring that all work is done.  Wednesday will be spent in a breakout session.  For those who need more time in completing their work, time will be granted.  For those who are done, we will speak about the assessment that is scheduled for Thursday.   Students will be notified if the assessment is open note or closed note.  Certainly, if they work well, it is an open note, open homework assessment and determinations will be announced regarding this Wednesday.  Once Thursday's assessment is completed, we start a mini lesson on immigration Friday.
Students need to be working on their 8 sections of textbook reading each night or as much as possible.  Time will be granted in class, but there cannot be enough time with only in class work granted.  Please help me help your child by asking to see their notes on the textbook reading.  Scan over their work by seeing if they have used the word "because" in a prominent fashion in their notes and if they have included relevant vocabulary in their answers.  Are their notes reflective of comprehension found in the text?  These are questions that you can use to guide your assessment of their work, work that will help them with their own assessment on Thursday.
If I can be of any further assistance, please do not hesitate to contact me.
I hope students can find themselves immersed in the study of American History after the Civil War, a narrative of how money can drive people to do things that can only be the source of more questions.
All best.
Mr. Kannan

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Money... And American History

Please note:  Periods 3 and 4 will have their scores on Learning Styles Assessment inputted by 1:00 PM on Saturday.  Periods 7 and 8 will have their scores inputted by 1:00 PM on Sunday.

We commence our study of industrialization this week.  The game of Monopoly sets our stage to understand the condition of wealth and acquisition of money that spawned both the rise of the world's greatest industrialists as well as the greatest emergence of the robber baron.  In this study, students will understand the power of industrialization, the undercurrent of economics that runs through American History, as well as the balance of power between those who possessed wealth and those who did not.  The resonance of theories of rights and government as advocated by Marx and Smith will be delved in this unit as well as reading the work of Howard Zinn.  We will study the world of illiteracy and discuss the obligations of the promises and hope of a great democracy.  From the inventions to the unions to Swami Vivekenanda to a world of Yertle the Turtle, this unit will be a whirlwind to begin our study of American History.

That's fairly good for the first content unit.

This week, students will receive their at home copies of the textbook.  They will also start working out of their textbook, as well as out of their packets.  My hope is that students will be able to rise to yet another challenge of being able to work well in class and outside of it.

I also look forward to seeing you at Curriculum Night on Wednesday.  If I can be of any further assistance, please do not hesitate to contact me.

All best.
Mr. Kannan

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Moving from Learning Styles with its understanding never far behind

This week, we conclude our discussions of learning styles.  It is something that I believe will remain with students over the course of the year as we will be revisiting it constantly.  It will provide the frame of reference for how students will learn and be assessed.

This week, students should focus on completing their homework from the learning styles packet by Tuesday.  This will give them enough time to prepare for Thursday's assessment on Learning Styles.  Students will be given a study guide for the assessment on Thursday.  A copy of it can be found on this week's syllabus by clicking the hyperlink in the Social Studies homework box.  On Friday, students will start their study of Industrialization by playing Monopoly in class.  If students would like to bring in their own games of Monopoly from home, they can earn 20 points of extra credit.

On Wednesday, our instruction is going to focus on transcendental meditation.  My hope is that students will embrace this practice and make it part of their daily routines.  There are many benefits that can help our students embrace meditation on their path towards scholarship and improvement of both their mental and intellectual health states of health. 

I look forward to seeing all of our stakeholders at Curriculum Night, next Wednesday night.  If I can be of any further help or assistance, please do not hesitate to contact me.
All best.
Mr. Kannan