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Art News: May 2013

Our last full month of school has begun, and we are working on the last couple of projects in all of our classes right now.  K/1 classes are working on a project inspired by Eric Carle, which involves painting and coloring several pieces of paper and creating cut-out shapes.  2/3 classes are learning about Wayne Thiebaud and his famous paintings of cakes.  They are learning the steps to draw several types of cakes using simple shapes and designs.  4/5 classes are finishing up their Jellyfish project, and will be starting a project on the planets and solar system soon.  Middle School is finishing up their unit on the art of India/Tibet with a project in which they design a glove in the same way that a henna artist works with mehndi designs on the hands and feet.  Elective is moving from their color project, to their sculpture project in the coming weeks.

Earlier last month, I announced that I would not be returning next school year so that I can pursue my graduate degree in art history at Wayne State and begin work writing for a Detroit-based music website.  It has been three years of hard work, wonderful learning experiences, and bonding with some of the most intelligent, respectful, and humorous students that I will ever come across, and I will never forget the kindness and generosity of the amazing community I have been able to work with.  Thank you all from the bottom of my heart — not only have I enjoyed spending time with your students helping them learn about and create art, but I have genuinely enjoyed spending time getting to know them as the individuals and watching them grow and mature.  I am really looking forward to how much fun we are going to have this last month!

Media Center News: May 2013

Spring Book Fair is coming up!  It’s on the night of Curriculum Celebration, and will be sponsored by our local bookseller, Nicola’s Books. Add to your own library and help support HCCS Media Center at the same time!

Technology News: May 2013

2/3 Technology
Students have finished building and testing their boats, and finished compiling the packets of work that they created during the course of the project. Boats will be on display at the Spring Curriculum Celebration. Great work, 2/3 students!
A finished 2/3 boat project. A finished 2/3 boat project.
4/5 Technology
Students have finished building and testing their vibrobots, and finished compiling the Keynote presentations that they created during the course of the project. These Keynote presentations show their project work from start to finish. Vibrobots will be on display at the Spring Curriculum Celebration. Great work, 4/5 students!
For now, check out the video below that shows one of the finished Vibrobots.

Middle School Technology
In April, students have been finishing their final design drawings and moving into building and testing their solar-powered vehicles.
A student finishes final design plans for his solar vehicle. A student finishes final design plans for his solar vehicle.
 
Students have a range of materials to choose from when building their vehicles, including foam, cardboard, foamcore, and plastic. The vehicles are starting to take shape for most students. See some examples below:
A student uses the hot-wire cutter to cut the foam body for his solar-powered vehicle. A student uses the hot-wire cutter to cut the foam body for his solar-powered vehicle.
A student's solar vehicle in process. A student’s solar vehicle in process.
A student uses the drill press to create axle holes for her solar vehicle. A student uses the drill press to create axle holes for her solar vehicle.
A student's solar vehicle in process. A student’s solar vehicle in process.
A student's solar vehicle in process. A student’s solar vehicle in process.
 
After getting the vehicles built, testing and recording data is the next step in determining the success of the design.
A student tests her solar-powered vehicle. A student tests her solar-powered vehicle.
Students measure light intensity and test solar panels. Students measure light intensity and test solar panels.
A student measures light intensity and records results on an iPad. A student measures light intensity and records results on an iPad.
Testing the voltage from a solar panel. Testing the voltage from a solar panel.
MS Tech Elective: Assistive Technology
The 2nd semester Assistive Technology elective is going very well.
Students have been finishing up their first project: one-button video games. They have been working hard on troubleshooting and fixing bugs in their games, getting them turned in through our Moodle online learning system, and moving on to the extension activity for this project.
Screenshot from a student's one-button game.
Screenshot from a student's one-button game.
The extension activity for this project is to build a prototype switch that could be used to play the one-button games. Students have been working with cardboard to build prototypes, and then moving on to use other materials, such as thermoplastic donated by a parent who works in Occupational Therapy.
A student works on his prototype switch. A student works on his prototype switch.
Students work with thermoplastic, using it to make custom molds from their wrist and hands. Students work with thermoplastic, using it to make custom molds from their wrist and hands.
Students work with thermoplastic, using it to make custom molds from their wrist and hands. Students work with thermoplastic, using it to make custom molds from their wrist and hands.
A student works on her prototype switch. A student works on her prototype switch.
A student's prototype switch, using a spring and thermoplastic. A student’s prototype switch, using a spring and thermoplastic.

Music News: May 2013

Please join us for our concert on Tuesday, May 21st at 3:30 in the gymnasium, as Honey Creek presents “Gotta Be Jazz.” In this show K-5 students will be taking us on a journey through the history of jazz music. It will be a great opportunity to learn some fun facts about jazz and enjoy awesome music. Band and choir students will also be performing some exciting songs, including “Selections from the Hobbit”, and “Danny Boy.” Band and choir students will need to wear black pants and white shirts. Elementary students do not need any special costumes, but it is great when they are able to dress up a little bit. We look forward to performing for you on May 21st! Hope to see you there!

Physical Education and Swimming News: May 2013

In Physical Education the students have continued their physical fitness testing, as well as started a Frisbee unit. They have been working on throwing and catching, as well as a few games and activities. In the next upcoming weeks, students will begin a jump roping unit.
In swimming students are working to begin refining the skills they have been learning throughout the year. Lately we have been focusing on freestyle and breast stroke. This last week they have been learning how to assist other swimmers, as well as how to properly use life jackets.
The Maturation Unit for 4/5 and MS begins at the end of May. Please be on the look out for more information.
PE Play Day is scheduled for Friday, June 7th. Please keep on eye out for more information as the day gets closer. If you would like to volunteer, please email me at acdougovito@hc.wash.k12.mi.us.

Art News: April 2013

I hope everyone has had a wonderful Spring Break and is ready to come back to some more great art projects!  K/1 classes just finished up a great unit on imagination and characters, and 2/3 classes are getting into a fun collage project based on the painter Arcimbaldo.  4/5 classes are beginning a unit on jellyfish which involves a drawing and a 3D mobile project, and Middle School is working on their art unit which studies Indian art and the art of mehndi and radial design.  I am very excited to round out the last part of our school year with such wonderful and creative ideas!

Technology News: April 2013

In 2/3 technology, students have been finishing up our Boat Design unit, which ties in to the 2/3 Science curriculum. They have been hard at work testing their boat designs and recording data, as well as taking videos and photos of their finished boats.

IMG_9421 IMG_9424

4/5 Technology

In the 4/5 technology classes, students have been working hard on an exciting new hands-on project called Vibrobots!

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Students have taken these ordinary mint tins and transformed them into some amazing motorized creations! Here are a couple photos of work in progress:

mazzy-dremel3
A student works on drilling holes for her vibrobot’s legs using the Dremel Drill Press
photo 1 (1)
A vibrobot in progress
photo 2 (1)
Vibrobot with legs and motor

 MS Technology

The Middle School technology classes have been working on an exciting engineering design-based project in which they are designing, building, and testing solar-powered vehicles. Students have been working hard on their design work and have mostly finished their final design drawings. Here are some examples:

20130409-151329.jpg

20130409-151348.jpg

Most students are using pencil and paper, but a few have been using Google Sketchup to design 3-D models of their vehicles, as shown below:

20130409-150541.jpg

From here, students choose materials and begin building their vehicles.

 

MS Technology Elective

The 2nd semester technology elective is focused on Assistive Technology. Students have begun their first project in which they are designing one-button video games. These can be used in occupational therapy to encourage people to stretch muscles after surgery, build flexibility and so on. They can also be used by our High Point friends, using the simple switches that many of them are used to!

A student teaches the class how to use a programming technique in Scratch
A student teaches the class how to use a programming technique in Scratc

Media Center News: April 2013

The Media Center has been busy, especially with 4/5 students doing biography research.  They saw a presentation introducing them to using databases as sources of information, and made use of the links to the database that Marion put onto the Media Center’s web page. They are also starting a science fiction unit, and have selected books from Honey Creek’s collection.

Looking ahead, we’ll be having our annual Spring Book Fair as part of Curriculum Celebration on Friday evening, May 17, from 5-7 pm. The sale is a great way to get books for summer reading, birthday gifts, or as gifts honoring a graduate.  Sponsored by Nicola’s Books, our local bookseller, you won’t want to miss this.  Honey Creek Media Center gets 20% of sales in book credits to help build our collection.
Looking way ahead, there are only ten weeks of school left!  That means that it’s time to clean out the home bookshelves, under the sofa, in the back seat of the van, for those items that need to come back.  The Media Center will be sending notes listing what students should be returning.  Please email Marion if you have questions about your student’s list.

Honey Creek is Proud to Introduce the New Non-Fiction Leveled Reading Library

Research and practice have shown that providing the opportunity for children to read books at their reading level is one of the most effective ways to increase their reading skills. While our school library collection is fabulous and growing, the Common Core State Standards are placing a much bigger emphasis on nonfiction text.

Over the past year, Honey Creek students, teachers, and families have come together to raise funds for a K-8 non-fiction leveled reading library. This community effort has resulted in our school acquiring more than 1,000 new non-fiction titles. All students, in all grades, at all reading levels, will have access to these books.

We are honored and privileged both to host this collection and to have the support of such an active, engaged community.

Media Center News: March 2013

The Spring Book Fair hosted by Nicola’s will be on May 17, the same day as the Curriculum Celebration!

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