Study Skills

For most of us, the thing that keeps us from getting our schoolwork done is difficulty focusing. We watched Thomas Frank’s “5 Ways to Build Focus and Concentration.” from  and discussed the ideas that Mr. Frank presented. If the assignment called “Focus” is marked as MISSING in Aspire, you still need to write down what tactic you think will work best for you, and how you can adapt it to school situations.

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Math Lab

We’re finishing up our unit on percents. Today we did a review (p. 70 or p. 71 in the ESM workbook), and we’ll have an open-book quiz on Thursday.

As with all of our math lessons, if you were absent today, you will need to make up this work. Your workbook is available during math lab, during lunch, and before and after school, or you can make a photocopy of the page to take home.

The skills we are working on are very important, and so you may not simply skip the work, even if you’re absent.

Study Skills

This term, we are working on developing a growth mindset.

Last week, we took a quiz, to determine our current mindset. If this assignment is marked as MISSING, you’ll need to make this up during class. It’s not an assignment that you can take home. We will take the quiz again at the end of the term, to see our growth.

Then, we watched Carol Dweck’s TED talk on growth and fixed mindsets, and discussed how this applied to ourselves.

This week, we looked at how any situation can be viewed through the lens of “things we can control” and “things we can’t control.” We watched some people who were stuck on an escalator ( We discussed how often we are “stuck.” We think that our problem is unsolvable, and we begin to panic or give up, like the people on the video, when actually, our problem has many solutions. We need to be able to shake off the panicked thoughts, and focus our thoughts on solving the problem.

We completed the graphic organizer “Things I can Control.” If this assignment is marked as MISSING, use this model:


I challenge you: next time you think the thought, “I can’t take notes because I don’t have a pencil.” focus your mind on how you can solve the problem, instead of simply sitting there and waiting for your teacher to intervene.


Math Lab

Our format for Math Lab and Ms. Marie’s math class has changed. You used to work on your Mastering Essential Math Skills book as homework for Ms. Marie’s class. Now, you work on it in Math Lab. Last week, we did pages 60 and 61. This week, we will do pages 62 – 65.

These books remain in the P2C2 classroom, and do NOT go home.

If you are unable to finish your work during class time, you will need to arrange time to come in and work. Advisory and lunchtime are both good times to use for this.

Language of Liquids


Now that Outsiders is done, we are working on reading and writing in proper scientific language. In Mr. Rob’s class, when we write lab reports, we need to be using more “grown up” words than we’re used to. Mr. Rob put a list of scientific words on his blog, and we are going to work on learning how to use these words.

If “Language of Liquids” is marked as Missing on Aspire, then you did not finish this assignment. You were given a handout with the words and definitions in mixed-up order. We matched the words and definitions together in class, and you were supposed to tape or glue the cards down matched up correctly. You were then to draw an example of that word. Remember to focus on the definition that has to do with describing liquids.

Then, either solo or in groups, you were to write a scientific description of one of the following holiday drinks:

Hot chocolate with marshmallows
Coffee with whipped cream
Hot cider with a cinnamon stick
Cold eggnog with nutmeg sprinkled on top


Math Lab: Gift-Giving Data

All month we’re working with data! Today’s data was the answer to the question “How many presents are you buying or  making this year?” We shared a little about our family gift-giving traditions and then each table group (or solo, for those who chose to go solo) made a bar graph, a scatter plot, and a stem & leaf graph from that data. Each group also figured out the mean, median, mode, and quartiles for this data.

Normally, we don’t have homework in Math Lab. A couple of you refused to participate, or didn’t finish in the 40 minutes you were given. If you would like to improve your score on this assignment, you are welcome to do it again and turn it in and I would be happy to change your grade.


Time Management

Today in Advisory, we talked about managing our time. If the “time management” assignment is marked as missing in Aspire, you need to fill out the time management worksheet linked below.

On the worksheet, please don’t write down “school” or “family” but instead write what you are doing in that time. Is your school time spent learning, or being social, or goofing off? Same with your family time: are you building positive relationships by doing things together that demonstrate your values, or are you simply stuck in a room with those people?

On the four stones at the bottom of the page, write four things that /should/ be the way you spend your time.

We will be referencing this page again on Friday when we do an activity about our values!

time management

My Whiteboard

Here’s what’s been on my whiteboard recently…

To divide a word into its syllables, try following these rules. If this assignment is “missing” in Aspire, please copy this information down and show it to me, so you can get credit for the lesson.


In Advisory, we are starting over with our portfolios. Last week, we made the cover sheet in class. We had 40 minutes to work on it, but if you didn’t finish it, it is now homework. If this assignment is marked as “missing” in Aspire, you might be missing one of the four items that are required for you to get credit: first & last name, grade, school years, and color; or you forgot to show it to me.


Did you know that there were actual steps to following directions? There are! We learned about this in Study Skills. If this assignment is marked as “missing” in Aspire, you probably forgot to follow the direction of “turn it in!”


What are the four types of conflict in a narrative essay? Man vs man, man vs the environment, man vs himself, and man vs society. Which conflict did you choose for your short story?