Articles by: Garry Pfaffmann

Links to Health Unit Articles

Feel free to read the following articles which we are referencing in our health class. The Teen-age Brain: Explanation of changes in the brain during adolescence. We read and discussed this article in class. Adolescent Learner: Scroll down towards the bottom of the article for a list of characteristics common to teen physical, intellectual, and emotional characteristics. We didn’t read this article in class, but I find it very helpful in trying to understand that many teen behaviors which seem…

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Personal Health and Healthy Choices

Personal Health and Healthy Choices

This next three weeks, the fifth through eighth grade students are learning about personal health and healthy choices. This time has previously been used to discuss and practice social interaction skills in mixed-age groups, but for this brief unit Garry will be teaching the 7th/8th grade boys, and Christina Lacroix will be teaching the 7th/8th grade girls in small groups. Our discussion topics will include: Puberty: Physical changes, hygiene, and brain development. Relationships: What is…

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Project Based Learning

Project Based Learning

        The Language Arts journals are completed. After two months of learning and practicing how to effectively write narratives, paragraphs, various styles of poetry, and non-fiction summaries, students have put their work into a final product. And their journals are beautiful. Students appreciate displaying their work. Individual writing assignments don’t always bring about a feeling of pride for most middle school writers. Identifying best word choice, and organizational strategy is abstract compared…

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Genius Hour

Genius Hour

Google and Apple are famous for their corporate policy of “20% time” in which employees are encouraged to pursue their passions several hours each work, on company time. Such an atmosphere has led to increased employee satisfaction, as well as the development of some amazing products. This corporate culture has trickled into a 21st Century teaching practice known as “Genius Hour” or “20% Time.” Every Friday, all 7th and 8th grade students will have time…

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Debate Season

Students have been reading and responding to a variety of non-fiction texts relating to their thematic units. Now that they’ve been immersed in the content, are practiced in identifying main ideas, supporting details, and meaningful quotes, and are looking at web-based resources with a critical eye, it is time to present their skills in a public forum. 7th grade students will present an Internet Safety and Productivity Fair next Tuesday, Jan. 24 at 10:00. Parents are welcome…

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