Chocolate Chip Geologist

You have been hired at COOKIE INCORPORATED because of your expert knowledge on the mineral “chocolate chip”.

As the chocolate chip geologist you have traveled far and wide and have brought back two ore samples (chocolate chip cookies) to test. COOKIE INCORPORATED wants to know where they should build a chocolate chip mine and by testing these samples you will be able to give them data that will help them make their decision.

Questions students were asked the following question:

  1. What 2 factors do you believe will make you decide if the ore from site #1 or site #2 will be a better mineral deposit?

Cookies IMG_9067 IMG_9068 IMG_9070 IMG_9071 IMG_9072 IMG_9073

Socratic Circle

IMG_90147PN participated in their first Socratic Circle today and it was a huge success.  Ask your son/daughter how it works and I encourage you to offer your feedback on the topic of discussion: No Zero Policy.

Check out the article that led the Socratic Circle – No Zero Policy.

Book Club Expectations

For the last 3 weeks, students in 7PN have been working on ‘Book Clubs’ in ELA.  Each week students are given a reading assignment, and they are responsible for a variety of individual and group tasks.

The tasks include:

  • Chapter summary
  • Identify 5 new or unique vocabulary words from reading and investigate the words
  • Create 4 deeper thinking questions with answers
  • Create an illustration

On average, students are given 2.5 hours a week of class time to complete the week’s tasks and every Friday we host mixed group discussions reflecting on common themes among the 8 novels.  Anything that is not completed at school, is expected to be completed at home, ready for our group discussions on each Friday.

Please check in with your child to see where they are at and if they may need additional help staying on track.

Newspaper Chairs

This past Tuesday, all 130 grade 7 students were assigned the same task – To design a realistic looking chair that would support the average weight of a student in grade 7, 90 lbs.


  • needed to be a frame structure
  • needed to have distinct legs
  • minimum height of 30 cm
  • 20 ft of packing tape
  • newspaper only
  • 3 hours maximum

This activity focused on critical thinking in terms of getting the students to use what they were taught to create a structure that could support a load.

The feedback has been very positive in that even when the students weren’t successful, they all took something away from participating in the activity.

All chairs were on display for the entire school body to view and were asked to vote based on set criteria.  Following the display, all grad e7 students gathered to test the chairs. Students were given two cards, one red and the other blue, red representing, yes it will support a load and blue, no it won’t.

Newspaper Chairs IMG_8950

Book Club Discussions Week #1

We just completed our first week of managing 8 Book Clubs within our classroom.  How the final discussion day works is simple: The leader for the week checks in on all completed tasks by each individual group leader and then leads the discussions which are based on the 4 questions each group member has created based on the readings.  Afterward, students moved to mixed book groupings to discuss their books and reflect on more generalized questions that focused on the structure of the book, their experience thus far and the authenticity of it.  Attached are this week’s discussion questions.

Book Club Discussion Questions Week 1

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