We invite all current and prospective parents to join us for an inside look of the highlights of Saklan’s middle school program. Whether you are interested in the lower school or middle school, hearing what our students experience by the time they graduate from Saklan will inspire you.
On Wednesday, the middle schoolers went to the Alameda County Food Bank (ACFB). They worked for a little over an hour and a half and helped pack produce to go out to needy families in Alameda County. Our students helped package 6,119 pounds of onions for those in need; seniors, families and children.
As we are moving on to our next SEL topic next week on Gratitude, it was nice for our students to be able to give back to our community. Most people who receive assistance from the ACFB are people with jobs, who are having to decide between rent or food, or between medicine or food. One in six Alameda County residents receive help from the food bank, and of them children and elderly make up the largest group. In fact, one in every three children are getting help with the assistance of the food bank.
We were proud to help such a great organization and live our mission.
The seventh graders developed their own unique culture in small groups as part of a Humanities class project. We invited parents, family members, peers, and friends to attend our Culture Fair, Presentations, and Potluck on Monday, October 16 from 9:30-11:30AM. The seventh grade students prepared a 10-minute Power Point presentation to explain the basics of their culture. Some categories that they included were their location and geography, belief system, traditions, demographics, government structure, and social hierarchies. Afterward, the seventh graders welcomed other students and teachers into our classroom to make rounds in our Culture Fair. We shared food, fun, and learned so much. Below are the group names and members.
The second graders have each chosen a mammal to research as part of their Mammal and Classification Unit. They teamed up with their seventh grade buddies for a special project.
They had to gather information about the size, coloring, diet, habitat, and special facts about their mammal. They worked with their buddies to find this information from books and Internet material.
The second graders then transferred this information to note cards as they prepared for an oral report for their parents and classmates. This is a good example of students helping each other learn at Saklan.
This week, the 8th grade went to Smitten in Lafayette to see chemistry in action. The students saw how a dream to make the best ice cream involved understanding of matter, thermal dynamics, and engineering. Smitten uses local ingredients, machines that make evenly cooled ice cream, and liquid nitrogen to ensure the smallest ice crystal formation and smoothest texture.
Students saw ice cream being made by the machines, nitrogen boiling, and enjoyed a scoop themselves. It was a very tasty and interesting field trip!
Every Wednesday throughout the school year, the Owlets and their 6th grade buddies will get together to play, go on walks, read and do art projects. Both the Owlets and 6th graders look forward to this special time together every week.
8th grade Humanities have been working on a collaborative, map-making, research exploration of US cultural geography. The students are challenged to understand how the way people live affects where they live. An important part of the assignment is learning how to problem-solve creatively and work cooperatively with others in a deadline situation. Please swing by the Humanities class next week to check the map out in person!
This past month, the students at Saklan have been learning about Self-Regulation. On Tuesday, our 8th graders led their first family group meeting of the year around this topic: helping the students to recognize or identify when they need to help themselves to achieve a goal, task, assignment and being able to get themselves back on track. The students watched a video staring cookie monster, where he must fight his urges to eat his cookie partner in order to save a princess. The students saw that sometimes not one solution is enough.
Each family group was then given one issue that might happen at school, and came up with tools that could help them overcome that, so they can get back to the task at hand. These included: when a child is stressed, when they can’t stop giggling, when they are angry or upset (at a friend or situation), or when they are having a hard time focusing. Each family group made a poster showing their tools on the cookies, surrounded by their own cookie monster! Come check these out in the breezeway!