Friday, May 3, 2019

Fusion Communication: May 3

Hi all,

The last weeks have begun! So have SBAC assessments… please check ahead on calendars for appointments to see potential conflicts with SBACs - all assessments will take place in the morning from 8-10:30am (except Wednesday - no SBACs Wednesday due to delayed start).

8th Grade Great Escape Field Trip Update -
Please return the permission form ASAP! Great Escape would like our payment this week! Please direct any questions to

SBAC Reminders:
  1. Very Important - All laptops MUST remain at school over the weekend. Students will be testing for SBAC starting Monday so those laptops need to be fully charged.
  2. Laptops will remain at school each night next week - so no homework will be assigned next week (students are VERY sad about this adjustment).
  3. Earbuds or headphones - needs to have a 3.5mm jack to plug into laptops/Chromeboxes (school has a VERY limited # to share).
  4. Food - NOT candy.
  5. Reading material - high interest (teachers will provide alternatives).
May 6, 7, 9, 10 - Math/LA SBAC Assessments
May 8: Last Delayed Start
June 3: Official Move-up Day - 8th Graders to MMU
June 5: Great Escape Field Trip for 8th Grade
June 11: 8th Grade Laptops are audited by no later than this day
June 12: Official! Recognition Night for 8th Grade; last “official” day of middle school for 8th grade
June 13: 7th Grade Foursionville economics simulation (more information to come)
              All Laptops turned in and audited by this day!
June 14: NEW!7th Grade Fusion/Journey joint field trip to Waterbury Center State Park (9ish-1:15ish)
June 17: Mostly Official Last day of school for grades 5-7

Curriculum UpdatesLA
*** All students should be reading 30 minutes each day outside of class (either at home or in study halls). ***

7 Students handed in their process piece, an argument essay about competitive sports, on Wednesday. We have been making book covers and watching the film Christopher Robin to celebrate the end of our writing unit. Up next: nonfiction reading.

8 We have been exploring different types of journalism in class. This week, students have been listening to the podcast This American Life, specifically segments focusing on the middle school experience. Each time we examine a new story / form of journalism we discuss how the journalist delivered information and why the topic is considered newsworthy. Next week students will begin research for their process piece.

7: This week, we have balanced our time wrapping up this year’s work with Moving Straight Ahead (we will continue it at the beginning of next year) while also orienting ourselves to the format of the upcoming SBACs and some of the types of questions students might see. Next week, in the spaces in between testing, we will be doing some small group work concentrating on past concepts where students could use some more work.

8: This week, we have continued our work with Transformation Geometry applying our understanding of reflections, rotations, and translations to transformations on a coordinate grid. We have have also spent time orienting ourselves to the format of the upcoming SBACs and some of the types of questions students might see. Next week, in the spaces in between testing, we will continue our work with our current unit extending our work to parallel lines and transversals as well as dilations.

7: Students analyzed case studies and data to explore how species change over long periods of time in response to environmental changes. They are wrapping up this unit by revisiting bacteria and the evolution of resistance to antibiotics. In between SBAC testing next week, students will begin the final unit on Ecology.

8: The focus this week was on the Vermont Science Assessment (VTSA), or, as some people call it, Science SBAC’s. This is the first official year administering this test in Vermont; you should receive individual reports of your child’s performance in the mail. The test includes topics addressed throughout their middle school years, and emphasizes science and engineering practices. In between SBAC testing next week, students will wrap up the unit on chemical reactions by considering what to do with the copper waste they produced when making circuit boards.

7 - Students completed assessments related to the economics unit before the break and are now exploring how Population Pyramids demonstrate past events - and potentially predict future needs. Students analyzed two countries population pyramids with a focus on birth and death/mortality rates - and the factors that may affect both.

8 - The focus was to finish the Industrial Revolution assessment. Students read an article about the Triangle Shirtwaist Fire and watched a documentary detailing the remarkable factory reform efforts that occurred afterwards. The last unit of study will start next week - Causes of the Civil War.

Sunday looks to be the better weather day - here’s to longer days in the sun and watching spring sports (or maybe a hike?).

The Fusion Team