Monday, March 14, 2011

New Urban Teen Novels and Pi!

If you're a Bluford High fan or urban teen realistic fiction fan - you need to come to the Media center ASAP to grab one of these 6 new novels! Last year, only 2 Bluford High books were approved for Middle School - and of course I bought them both! This year we found 4 and got them all plus a new series called the Urban Underground.

A Boy Called Twister:
"Kevin Walker has a secret, and he hopes it will stay hidden when he moves to California from small-town Spurville in Texas." - School Library Journal Will he work out the conflict, will his deadly secret come out and more importantly, will his new friends support him or reject him? You'll have to read this to find out!
Outrunning the Darkness: #1 of the Urban Underground series follows the friends of Jaris at Tubman High School. "Jaris worries about his parents, who are experiencing marital difficulties, and his father's black moods, which the young man sometimes shares." - School Library Journal
A Matter of Trust:
"A well-written and easy-to-read book. The situations hold readers' attention and are ones teens relate to." -- A student review published in The Journal of Adolescent and Adult Literacy
Summer of Secrets:
"I like the Bluford Series because it is action-packed all the way through."
-- Adam F., student reviewer
"The Bluford books are REAL. What you see in them really happens. That's why you can't stop reading." -- Phillip, C., student reviewer
Brothers in Arms:
"Martin Luna is in deep trouble. Just months ago, a horrible tragedy took his little brother, and now it threatens to take him too. Which way will he go?" You'll have to read the book to find out!
Someone to Love Me:
".... keeps you on the edge of your seat anxiously wondering what will happen next." -- A student review published in the Journal of Adolescent and Adult Literacy

"My school is just like Bluford High. The characters are like people I know. These books are real." -- Jessica, K. 9th grade student

Check out these new books from Anne Schraff at the MHMS Library Media Center!

Oh, and HAPPY Pi Day!!!!

and i still LOVES our MHMS GT Dept. 3.14 Pi Vid from a few years back....still wished we ended with a Pi in the face....LOL

List of numbers – Irrational and suspected irrational numbers
γ – ζ(3) – √2 – √3 – √5 – φ – ρ – δS – α – e – π – δ

Number system Evaluation of π
Binary 11.00100100001111110110...[1]
Decimal 3.14159265358979323846264338327950288...
Hexadecimal 3.243F6A8885A308D31319...[2]
Rational approximations 3, 22⁄7, 333⁄106, 355⁄113, 103993/33102, ...[3]

(listed in order of increasing accuracy)
Continued fraction [3; 7, 15, 1, 292, 1, 1, 1, 2, 1, 3, 1, 14, 2, 1, 1, ... ][4]

(This continued fraction is not periodic. Shown in linear notation)
Trigonometry π radians = 180 degrees

How do YOU Celebrate Pi Day?

from wikipedia
graphics from Fort Math

Friday, March 04, 2011

Facebook, Farcebook, and Fakebook

So we have a spankin new iMac computer lab in our building and I'm really chuffed! (British for flippin excited!) 30 brilliant new iMacs all lined up & shiny...ready work with my kids to create cool stuff with the kids! (and yes, throughout this post I'll be showing off the pics - your hard-earned tax money at work - please notice the hard to find laminated not mint, Think Different Apple posters stapled to the wall bought in 1999- don't hate!)
Facebook, Farcebook, and Fakebook Templates
Miss Wallen - one of our coolest teachers is using the iMac lab with her kids to do a mock Facebook page for Latin American Historical figures like Pizarro, Cortes, Bolivar, and Hidalgo with her 7th grade Social Studies kids!
Using the downloadable template I shared from our favourite NerdyTeacher none other than Nick Provenzano the kids are using our databases and links Miss Wallen found to do their research and then become the character filling in the Facebook template.

What's so cool is they can write on their walls as if they or another historic character left a message such as: "I Founded a city...I'm calling it Ciudad de los Reyes, which means "City of the Kings" It's royally AWEsome...I'm a Winner!" Even though in real life Pizarro never learned to read or write... with this template kids can really get a different glimpse into his life, political struggles, adventures, and accomplishments!

My teacher librarian friend, Barbara Randolph, passed along a cool link to a Teacher's Discovery resources Blank Farcebook Poster Set of 30 for $19.99 - which can be laminated & written on with dry erase markers for when the computer lab is being used for month long standardized testing (starting next week!). Taking that idea...I've got it in me heid to create a comic life version - making several changes - I'm gonna call it Fakebook and post it to my Comic Tutorial gallery & ya'll can print em out for free! Stay tuned for that!

But I AM gonna buy from that company a really cool set of NOVEL CHARACTERS FARCEBOOK (TM) POSTERS SET OF 8 for...[gulp!] $39.99! Described as: "Characters from your favorite novels come to life on these Farcebook posters. Learn what book Ponyboy Curtis likes to read and what Frankenstein's monster's favorite song is. Does Scout Finch really belong to the group "the Maycomb Legal Defense Fund"? Is Odysseus really interested in spelunking? Find out these fun facts and more. Your students will recognize this format and will love finding all the hidden information. 11 x 17 inches each, printed on glossy card stock, middle school/high school. "
Check out that cool chick Juliet & her page...has she friended you yet?

When our 7th grade social studies kids finish the unit & we check out all their pages we'll be posting them on our learning wiki! I love the idea of these Fake Facebook pages for historical or fictional characters - it get's the kids excited - creates dynamite disposition to learning with total student engagement and is also relatable!

What do you think? Do you have any other resources or sites like these that use Social Media to tie into student projects? Please comment! Loves me some comments!
iMac lab photos by Gwyneth Jones