Welcome to Seventh Grade!
Wendy Powell is our Homeroom Teacher for the Seventh Grade at St. Joseph of Cupertino School.
My journey into education began as a Peace Corps volunteer in Senegal, West Africa. Following that incredible experience, I spent 22 years teaching math in grades 4 – 8 in the California public and private school system and at international schools overseas. I have a Multiple Subject Credential and a Masters in education. I specialize in teaching math in the middle grades. In addition to standard-level math, I have taught honors and math intervention courses. I was also part of a team tasked with developing a grade 6 - 8 character education program. Over the past 12 years I have worked in the Philippines, Switzerland, and most recently, Colombia. This has allowed me to do one of the things I love most, traveling and learning about different cultures around the world. I also enjoy hiking, rock climbing, sailing, scuba diving and horseback riding. Now that I am back in the states, I am excited to bring my knowledge, background and enthusiasm for math to St. Joseph’s and to work with such an amazing group of young people.
New digital literacy curriculum was introduced in 2016 in grades 7 and 8. ELA (English-Language Arts) curriculum follows CA Common Core. In Literature, students are exposed to a variety of genres. A digital library can be accessed from any linked account. Critical thinking skills are developed through regular discussion. A focus is placed on evidence-based writing. Conventions of language are taught in conjunction with the literature. Public speaking skills are taught weekly.
Students focus on four critical areas: (1) proportional relationships; (2) operations with rational numbers, expressions and linear equations; (3) solving problems involving scale drawings and informal geometric constructions, working with two- and three-dimensional shapes to solve problems involving area, surface area, and volume; and (4) drawing inferences about populations based on samples. Adv. Math: Students move more quickly through the grade level curriculum and delve more deeply into various topics.
Curriculum is based on the 4 pillars of the Catechism of the Catholic Church. Students focus on Jesus’ life and death, Social Justice, and are given opportunities to see this part of their faith in action. Students volunteer at Sacred Heart Community Services once a month by serving the community in the food pantry and preschool. The retreat for the 7th grade class is focused on homelessness and poverty.
We have adopted the NGSS (Next Generation Science Standards). We use the on-line program STEMscopes by Accelerate Learning. STEMscopes follows the 5 E’s approach: Engage (access prior knowledge and address misconceptions), Explore (carry out investigations and activities), Explain (watch videos, surf the web), Elaborate (read topical articles, career connections), and Evaluate (through tests, project and/or presentations.
Students learn about the social, cultural, and technological changes that occurred in Europe, Africa, and Asia after the fall of the Roman Empire. We explore the disintegration of the Roman Empire, Islam and China in the Middle Ages, Ghana and Mali in Medieval Africa, Medieval Japan and Europe, Meso-American and Andean civilizations, the Renaissance, the Reformation, the Scientific Revolution, the Age of Exploration, The Enlightenment, and the Age of Reason. Students are active note takers and participate in group projects.
Students become more proficient in MS Office, Photoshop (for graphic design & publishing posters), and iMovie and iPhoto (for multimedia projects). Dedicated 1:1 iPads are utilized across the curriculum, both in the classwork and homework.
Students learn music for Mass and Prayer Services and are invited to join Music Ministry, School Choir, and Band.
Classes meet every other week, creating projects that reinforce the elements of art. Exploring art from other cultures provides exposure to a variety of materials while art appreciation and art vocabulary are expanded.
The PE program features both weekly aerobics and traditional physical education classes. Our focus is on the development of healthy lifestyle habits, fitness, cross -functional athletic skills and sportsmanship to encourage a life-long interest in sports and athletics.
Students study the high school curriculum of Spanish 1. We work on listening skills, oral communication and grammar.
Students attend library twice per month covering short stories, poetry, and diagramming sentences.