Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Our Town is Better Than Yours!

True statement.

Cheney is a small town in the heart of Kansas.  The city truly cares about the people who live here. Especially the school kids.

For over a decade the City of Cheney has put on the "City Government Day" for our 7th grade students at the middle school.  Each year the city provides an opportunity for our kids to experience their town like never before.  And if you've spent a any time around teenagers, you can understand what a BIG deal this is.

The students are able to travel around Cheney with the City Administrator who gives them all the dirty details that go into operating a city.  Our teens peer into the 85 ft. hand-dug well, learn how many gallons of water is held in the water tower, and see the amazing power the sun plays in our waste removal system.

Checking out the sewage system.
CMS students also travel to the fire station where they get to operate a thermal camera in a smoke-filled room, learn about vehicle safety (since driving is right around the corner), and use the jaws of life to rip apart a car.  This year the kids had to team up to try and direct a fire hose spray at some cones across the yard.  Not as easy as it looks...

One of the most beneficial stops along their tour is library and City Hall.  The Library Board okay-ed the renovation of the loft area above the library into a Young Adult Section. This area was created specifically to encourage teens to read, study, and socialize in a positive environment.  It has worked! The loft space has teens utilizing it every afternoon after school!

Cheney City Hall allows 7th graders the opportunity to participate in a "mock city council meeting," role playing council members, debating issues important to them, and learning what goes in to each decision the council makes.  Teens love to argue debate over the time for the town curfew!

Holding a City Council meeting and debating the time for the town curfew!
CMS 7th Graders end their day out at Cherry Oaks Golf Course learning how much time, effort, and attention goes into keeping the 18 holes in top-notch shape.  They are always amazed at how short the grass is cut on the green!

There is no other town in Kansas that provides this kind of in-depth look at the inner workings of a city government.  No town that comes together to prove just how important the young people of the community are, and how student voice is important.  It's just simple.

Our town is better than yours!

Thursday, October 1, 2015

So I don't leave ya hangin'

A continuation of the post I did the other day about my 8th graders creating laws of the classroom.  I wouldn't want you to be left wondering what they decided.

They did a great job!  Here are my new classroom "laws."

Classroom Rules
Created by the 8th Grade Class of 2020

1.       Each unit of study will end with EITHER a test or project.  Option for student choice may be available.

2.     Tests are always worth 100 points in the gradebook.  Tests not finished during the allotted class time will be allowed one target time in a two-day period to finish.

3.     Projects are worth anywhere from 75-185 depending on the work required.

4.     Every successfully completed homework assignment will be credited anywhere 20-45 points depending on the required work.  Daily work completed in class will be worth anywhere from 5-15 points.

5.     Detention policy:  Academic Detention (AD) is used as a time and place for a student to complete a missing assignment.  AD’s will only be assigned if work is not completed, and will be canceled if work is turned in before scheduled AD.

6.     All late work will be docked 10% for each day it is late.   Late work will no longer be accepted under the following circumstances.
a.      The Unit Test/Project has been completed.
b.      One week after test or project depending on student need.

7.      No name papers will receive a 0 and remain that way unless the student finds the paper and turns it back in, receiving 80% credit.

8.     All written assignments will be competed one of two ways.  Students may choose their option.
a.      Typed on iPad and emailed to Mrs. Weber
b.      Written neatly on paper and turned into the basket.

9.     Students who are absent are expected to check their email for make-up work.  If no email comes, or student does not have access to email, he or she is expected to come see Mrs. Weber in person.   Absent work is given one week to be completed, unless otherwise stated by Mrs. Weber.