Middle School Math,
Mrs. Marie Vandecoevering
“To be understood as to understand,
To be loved as to love, For it is in giving that we receive. . .”
~ from The Prayer of Saint Francis
Greetings mathematicians, my name is Marie Vandecoevering. I graduated from the University of Portland with an Undergraduate degree in Education and got my Masters in Special Education from Concordia University. I lived in Oregon for most of my life but did get to experience the sunny life in San Diego for three years after I graduated college. This is my ninth year teaching and my sixth year at Holy Cross.
I love teaching math! I think it is such a fascinating subject that we use in our daily life. As a middle school teachers I think it is just as important to teach students life long skills that will help them in high school and also as adults. Teaching math is just one part of my job, we also teach organization, time management, how to advocate for yourself, teamwork, and so much more.
I took advantage of every possible Professional Development opportunity I had this summer to further develop and expand my instructional practices during Distance Learning. While I have taught for nearly a decade, in many ways, I am a first year teacher again. This is both humbling and exciting. With a new curriculum and an ever emerging skill-set, and a positive attitude, this is going to be a tremendous year of learning and growth.
Click HERE to watch a ~6 minute video explaining what Distance Learning will look like this Fall, how it will differ from Spring 2020, and what to expect moving forward.
I will “push” out lessons to your children via Google Classroom every evening at 8:00 pm for the next day. For example, Tuesday, September 15th's lesson will be available Monday, September 14th at 8:00 pm. Assignments will be organized by weeks on Google Classroom. Each assignment/activity will be numbered and titled making them easy to find.
Students will show their knowledge of the material in a variety of ways, both digitally and "paper-and-pencil". In a typical week, live (synchronous) instruction will be daily Monday thru Thursday and a Comprehension Check will take place on Friday. Synchronous classes will be held with the whole group or in small groups, these small groups are fluid and will change depending on the lesson. Click HERE to see the Middle School schedule that will be used during distance learning (note: there may be some minor changes that are made, Parents will be informed of the exact schedule in the weekly email.
Every Sunday I will email parents the plan for the upcoming two weeks. I am confident that the current week will remain the same, but some things may need to shift in the following week. I am giving you a two-week scope so you can prepare for what’s coming up. This lesson plan will also be posted on the Google Classroom. Keep this email/lesson plan, there will be important links needed for that weeks lessons.
I will hold office hours, this gives students the opportunity to in via Zoom or email to receive additional supports. For security purposes I will not post the link here. If your child needs help, he or she can complete the following Google Form at any point during the day.
For security purposes, I am not providing the links to Google Classroom here. I have emailed parents the link to their child's Google Classroom. If you need me to send the link again, please let me know! Students have already been invited to their Google Classroom, the invitation can be found in their Holy Cross Gmail.
Google Classroom will be the Learning Management System (LMS) that your child will use for Distance Learning. All information will be included on this platform. I will be using other platforms such as Nearpod, Desmos, various Google Apps and more. All necessary links for these additional platforms will be included on Google Classroom. In simplest terms, everything your child needs can be found in one spot!
Unfamiliar with Google Apps? Click HERE to access tutorial videos and helpful instructions on how to maneuver the Google Apps that we will be using this year.
We are introducing a new and updated curriculum to Middle School, but a familiar curriculum to our 6th and 7th graders. The entire school is now using Ready Classroom Mathematics (an updated version from Ready Mathematics) and iReady. Below are PDF's that give an overview of what content is being covered this year and roughly when it is being taught. Now, more than ever, we all need to practice flexibility and patience as this is a new curriculum and a "new normal."
A fundamental element of this curriculum is cultivating discourse. Rich discussions can happen in the math classroom just like in a Social Studies or Language Arts class. To achieve this, the structure of our days/weeks will follow the routine: Try It - Discuss It - Connect It. Click HERE to learn more information on this structure.
The first units covered in each grade are listed below. I have included a link that will take you to a 4-5 minutes video that outlines what will be covered in each unit.
6th Grade - Expressions and Equations: Area, Algebraic Expressions, and Exponents
7th Grade - Proportional Relationships: Ratios, Rates, and Circles
8th Grade - Geometric Figures: Rigid Transformations and Congruence
... use Google Classroom? This 6 minute tutorial video will address the following questions/topics:
- How to get to Google Classroom (0:13)
- How to view your work (0:26)
- How to see your grade (0:40)
- How to see what assignments have been assigned/graded/are missing (0:45)
- How to access the "To-Do" list (1:15)
- What to find under "Classwork" (1:57)
- What the icons mean (2:20)
- How to turn in assignments (3:15)
- Attaching a file (3:50)
- Rubric explanation (5:02)
Helpful Resources for Students
Multiplication Math Facts: It is essential that students know their multiplication facts. Accuracy and fluency are both important. No one likes getting stuck in traffic, taking time to think of these facts that students *hopefully* already know, can lead to that frustrating feeling of be caught in a traffic jam.I expect all students to be fluent in their multiplication facts 1-12. There is nothing wrong with the good old fashion flashcards. Students can make their own and practice for 10-15 minutes a day with a friend or family member. For more practice click HERE, increase the levels as you become proficient.
Khan Academy: Most students have made an account on Khan Academy so they (and I) can track their progress. I challenge you to complete as many skills as you can. You can either complete the skills from the grade you just completed (great way to review and make sure there are no gaps) or you can preview what you are going to learn next school year.
- 5th Grade Math Skills (7 main categories: Addition & Subtraction, Multiplication & Division, Fractions, Place Value & Decimals, Measurement & Data, Geometry, Algebraic Thinking)
- 6th Grade Math Skills (8 main categories: Ratios, Rates, & Percentages, Arithmetic Operations, Negative Numbers, Properties of Numbers, Variables & Expressions, Equations & Inequalities Introduction, Geometry, Data & Statistics)
- 7th Grade Math Skills (7 main categories: Negative Numbers - Addition & Subtraction, Negative Numbers - Multiplication & Division, Fractions, Decimals & Percents, Rates & Proportional Relationship, Expressions, Equations & Inequalities, Geometry, Statistics & Probability)
- 8th Grade Math Skills (7 main categories: Number and Operations, Solving Equations with One Unknown, Linear Equations and Functions, Systems of Equations, Geometry, Geometric Transformations, Data and Modeling)
Practice for the High School Placement Test
Middle School Events Calendar
Please check below for any major assignments, quizzes, tests, projects, etc. for Middle School.