TLC Charter Chatter
A Message from Virginia Jan. 10, 2020
Some Research and Considerations to Ponder about Mathematics
At both Discovery and Millennium, we are not satisfied with the level of mastery our students are demonstrating in math. As we work to find ways to be more successful, I thought it would be good to share this article with you.
(All the comments in parenthesis are my thoughts as I share this article.)
Emerging cognitive and neuroscience research finds that math anxiety is not just a response to poor math performance—in fact, 4 out of 5 students with math anxiety are average-to-high math performers. Rather, math anxiety is linked to higher activity in areas of the brain that relate to fear of failure before a math task, not during it. This fear takes up mental bandwidth during a math task—creating, for example, my feeling suddenly blank and unable to think. In turn, that discomfort tends to make those with math anxiety more reluctant to practice math, which then erodes confidence and skill. In part for that reason, anxiety has been linked to worse long-term performance in math than in other academic subjects like reading.
But unlike reading, seen as a joy and necessity for all children, math too often has been “feared and revered” as a frustrating, boring, mostly irrelevant subject for all but a few elite students with inborn talent.
Children aren’t born fearing math. (IN FACT OUR PRIMARY STUDENTS PERFORM WELL IN MATH) Their anxiety tends to rise as they age, as they confront more challenging content and “exposure to other people’s negative attitudes to mathematics; to social stereotypes, for example about the general difficulty of mathematics or about supposed gender differences in mathematics,” according to one recent analysis.
Those negative attitudes about math—who is capable and worthy of learning it—have bubbled under the surface of math education debates for more than a century.
In the early 1900s, William Heard Kilpatrick, a protege of John Dewey and one of the originators of U.S. math pedagogy, considered math “harmful rather than helpful to the kind of thinking necessary for ordinary living.” His peer, David Snedden, a highly regarded Teachers College professor and later education commissioner for Massachusetts, similarly called algebra a “nonfunctional and nearly valueless subject for 90 percent of boys and 99 percent of girls.” (HOWEVER GIRLS ARE PERFORMING BETTER IN MATH THAN THE BOYS AT
MILLENNIUM, ALTHOUGH THIS IS STILL BELOW STATE STANDARDS)
This perspective formed the foundation of the progressive approach to math education through the 1950s, although it wasn’t without detractors. In fact, they sparked the creation of the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics, which with the Mathematical Association of America argued for teaching comprehensive math concepts to “every educated person,” not just those going into highly technical fields like astrophysics or engineering.
Off and on in the decades since, arguments have flared among educators, policymakers, and the public about whether most children will ever need and can even understand algebra, geometry, or trigonometry. It leads to straw man choices between teaching “rigorous higher math”—envisioned as abstract, pure, completely divorced from any connection to students’ lives—or teaching “applied math,” seen as limited to the most low-level, utilitarian concepts, with few attempts to help students see connections among them.
Today, the sense of saving higher math for “math people” still holds some sway in K-12 education. A nationally representative EdWeek Research Center survey of U.S. teachers bears this out: While half of those surveyed believed math instruction should help students understand “deep concepts and structures” and use them to think about the world, 37 percent said that most students’ math instruction should be limited to basic algorithms, with conceptual math taught to “students who show particular ability or interest in entering a math field.” Another 7 percent of teachers viewed math mainly as a college gatekeeper and prioritized teaching math that would help students pass college placement exams like the SAT. 9 (IN OUR SCHOOLS, WE ENCOURAGE STUDENTS TO STRIVE TO AT LEAST REACH ALGEBRA 1, GEMOMETRY, AND ALGEGRA TWO.)
In many classrooms, the fallout from this debate has surfaced in curriculum and instructional practices that experts say exacerbate math anxiety and strengthen a so-called “fixed” academic mindset—the belief that math skill is innate and cannot be improved through effort. Students who plow through lists of equations unconnected to each other are less likely to understand how their progress builds over time. In classes where students are praised for rapidly churning out the right answer using “approved” methods rather than for solving problems creatively or collaboratively, students tend to compete and judge their own ability only in comparison with how others see them. (IMPORTANT TO NOTE THAT JUST BEING ABLE TO CALCULATE IS NOT WHAT MATH IS ABOUT. ALTHOUGH IT IS ESSENTIAL THAT STUDENTS FULLY MASTER TIMES TABLES AND FRACTIONS TO BE ABLE TO SURVIVE HIGHER LEVEL MATH)
It’s hard to break such a strong, socially ingrained idea as, “math people are different from the rest of us.” It’s also necessary to prepare our children for a world revolving around big data, a world in which economic, political, environmental, and health debates all call for us to understand more than just basic arithmetic. And it would be tragic if the vast majority of children only ever learn to associate math with dread and tedium and never with the beauty of nature’s chaos, or the little eureka moment of understanding why pi describes a circle … or the satisfaction of persevering and finally finding the solution to a math puzzle in your own time, even if it takes two pages of erasures and different approaches.
There aren’t “math people” and “non-math people,” only those who work through the challenging lesson and those who surrender too soon. Helping children understand that math doesn’t define them, but can help them redefine their world, could be key to turning math anxiety into joy.( IT IS ALSO CRITICAL THAT STUDENTS DO THE MATH HOMEWORK ASSIGNED. TRYING AND LEARNING FROM MISTAKES AND BEING ABLE TO ASK QUESTIONS IS THE WAY TO LEARN. SAYING, “I COULD NOT OR I DID NOT DO THE MATH HOMEWORK” IS NOT A WAY TO LEARN.)
Next School Holiday
Monday, Jan. 20, 2020 Martin Luther King Jr. Day
Personal Days for this School Year 2019/2020
VERY IMPORTANT Information for our current 2019/2020 school year beginning August 5, 2019, we have reduced personal/family days for students from 10 days down to 7 days. Allowing 7 days is still much higher than what the district schools allow and we feel 7 days is more beneficial for the school and for each students’ education.
It’s that time again. THE 14TH ANNUAL TRACY LEARNING CENTER CRAB FEED – FEBRUARY 1, 2020
Tickets to the February 1, 2020 Tracy Learning Center Crab Feed are on sale now!
Tickets are $55.00 per person, or a table of eight is $440.00. Table reservations include pre-assigned seating and your name or company name prominently displayed on your table.
The doors of the Portuguese Hall will open at 6:00 p.m. for a no-host cocktail hour. Your delicious crab dinner served with salad, pasta and bread will begin at 7:00 p.m.
Through so much generosity we have amazing raffle baskets and silent auction items. Then put on your dancing shoes and hit the dance floor until 12:00 a.m.
Please let me know if you can kindly donate to our DESSERT AUCTION.
Donna Baker (209) 321-9157 via text or firstname.lastname@example.org
Please let me know if you would like to volunteer for this awesome event. We are also looking for a new committee chair that would like to shadow Tom and Donna through all aspects of this community building event. Their daughter Ally will be graduating this year whereby they will kindly step down.
Lunch Menu Week of JAN. 13 – 1, 2020
Mon – Pizza
Tues – Chicken Nuggets and Mashed Potatoes
Wed – Beef or Veggie Burger
Thurs – Chili or Cheese Nachos
Fri – Chicken Patty Sandwich
Don’t forget to click the STAR after scanning and enter your student’s classroom number for credit.
NOW HIRING: Spring 2020 Head Athletic Coaches-
Boys Volleyball: https://www.edjoin.org/Home/DistrictJobPosting/1228598
TLC Preschool: Did you know?
Did you know our preschool teachers work hard each week creating lessons that are play based? The preschool teachers focus on a letter, number, color and shape each week. They use these focus concepts to create fun, interactive lessons that keep students engaged while having fun learning. This week the students have been focusing on the letter E as in elf, the number 10, the color brown, and the shape triangle. Students have created group posters with the letter E, sorted the letter E by capital and lowercase, and worked on creating lists of things that start with the E sound, made christmas decorations with groups of 10, and decorated a triangle shaped Christmas tree! Phew!. Who knew so much learning could be masqueraded into fun activities. Thank you teachers!
P2 began studying community helpers and map skills in preparation of our North Pole project. Students should bring their assigned building on Wednesday as we will set up our North Pole Wednesday morning and leave it up to use for classroom activities through Thursday.
Next week, we will do our weekly tests on Thursday because the teachers have many fun activities planned for Friday- including building mini gingerbread houses!
Don’t forget to change out your students extra clothes in their backpack to winter clothes.
Phase 1 had an exciting week!! We finished up our letter writing unit and are getting ready for procedural writing. In Social Studies we learned about Hanukkah from Mrs. Thompson. We did some fun holiday themed activities in LA and Math. Phase 1 also recognized SWO earners, and Golden Shoe earners. We have a great bunch of respectful students!! Our week ended with a Polar Express Party complete with hot chocolate and treats! Thank you for all your good wishes and gifts. Have a safe and wonderful Winter Break!!
Welcome back and happy 2020! This week our phase 2 students discussed our resolutions and goals for this year. We also assigned new AR goals that are due on February 14. Please remember to have your child read for at least 20 minutes every night!
In social studies our phase 2 classes are learning about our United States government. All of our language arts books this trimester also focus on important events in our American history. Some groups are reading about the Civil War and others will be reading about George Washington and the Revolutionary War. All math groups are currently working on fractions…your child can always practice this skill at home on IXL or Prodigy!
Discovery Middle School 5-6
Upcoming ⅚ Dates:
January 16: School Improvement Committee meeting in D12 at 4pm
January 17: Auditions for Mary Poppins Jr. will be held in the gym from 4-6pm (3rd-8th grade welcome!)
January 20: NO SCHOOL – MLK Day
February 17: NO SCHOOL – Presidents’ Day
Mrs. Zuniga’s Math:
*Important Note: All classes have begun their Lifelong Learner SWO this week and have already turned in the first portion. This is an extensive research project that will be presented in March at our DCS College Fair.
Varsity: Our class is finishing our mini decimal unit starting with multiplying decimals. Students are understanding the concept after recently learning how to multiply multi-digit numbers.
Scholastic: Our class is working through Unit 4 and started lesson 7 with multiplying integers. The students are still continuing to practice adding and subtracting integers using the game war. We are moving on to dividing integers and will be reviewing all operations next week.
Honors: Our class took their second quiz on solving equations. We will now move on to translating and solving equations. Students will use their previous knowledge of translating expressions in this next lesson.
Mrs. Nijjar’s Math:
Varsity: This week students reviewed the concepts about decimal addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division. Students took the unit test for the Decimal Unit. In the coming weeks, students will be learning about prime and composite numbers, along with finding the prime factors for the whole numbers.
Scholastic: We started this week with Unit-4, which introduces the concepts of positive and negative integers. In the coming weeks, students will be learning about adding, subtracting, multiplying, and dividing integers.
Honors: Students took the quiz related to evaluating functions and finding zeros of the function. In addition, students learned about arithmetic sequences and solved word problems including these concepts. In the coming weeks, students will be taking the Unit test and will start with the fourth unit.
**All of my students started with the Lifelong Learner phase of the SWO project. Students are provided an hour per week in the classroom to work on their SWO assignments. However, students have assignments assigned on google classroom and are encouraged to work on the SWO projects at home.
Ms. Rodieck’s Language Arts and Humanities:
Welcome to 2020! We started off easy on Monday and then hit the ground running on Tuesday.
All students were to have turned in their Book Club Book Report Brochure by Monday. If they have not done so yet – they need to do it for half credit. They also need to return the books. They were given their next book and that report is Due Tuesday, February 18, 2020.
Honors and Scholastic are nearly finished reading Fever 1789 and have started their final project. They were put in cooperative groups to complete a newspaper project. The project is on Google Classroom and they can work on it at home, in workroom, and in class.
In Humanities we are starting to look at art and listen to music as it relates to our theme Health and Wellness. We will be talking about artwork that came out of the AIDS epidemic in the 1980s and 1900s, but we will NOT be talking about how HIV is transmitted. The point is to talk about how the Black Plague of the Renaissance Period, Yellow Fever of 1793 (our current book), and the AIDS epidemic are times when rumors abounded and false information was shared that made things worse for people involved. We will also be talking about Music in the Catholic Church and Funeral Masses as an art form – not about the religion itself. Music Mondays and Artful Fridays would be good days to ask your son or daughter what they learned about in Humanities that day.
Language Arts with Mr. Harding:
2020 has started with great enthusiasm for our projects. Our personal symbolic mural project has been completed and turned in. The work is amazing. Some projects tell stories, and we can read along by deciphering the symbols and flow of ideas. Our other project is our novel, Fever, 1793. The story survived the break, and interest is high. As we near the end of the novel, students will write an essay (probably not a critical essay) about the universal themes in the novel. Our discussions are lively and the students’ curiosity brings the story 227 years into the future.
Social Studies with Mr. Bird and Mr. McCarthy:
Welcome to the new year of 2020! We have kicked off our first week back from break by starting our new unit on Ancient Greece. Throughout its time, Greece went through cycles of many different types of governments. In our unit we will explore Monarchy, Oligarchy, Tyranny, and most importantly Democracy. Students are already becoming familiar with the pro’s and con’s, as well as the similarities and differences between all four. We are learning all four types of government by recreating each one within our classroom by delegating roles of power (or lack thereof) to our students/citizens. Students should expect to have a quiz sometime in the middle of next week.
Science with Ms. Diaz:
Discovery Middle School 7th-8th
- Auditions for Mary Poppins Jr. will be held at the gym on January 17th from 4-6pm (3rd-8th grade welcome!)
- School Improvement Meeting January 16th at 4pm in D12
- No School on January 20th for MLK Day
School Improvement Committee Invitation!
The School Improvement Committee is a new aspect of our DCS team this year. This Committee is comprised of students, staff members, the DCS Team Leads, parents, Mrs. Woods, Mrs. Stewart, and a TLC Boardmember (Mr. Murray). We meet roughly once a month to discuss the DCS Action Plan and the overall progress of our school. We would love to welcome new members! If you are at all interested in joining or attending a meeting to find out more about DCS then please contact myself, email@example.com for more information.
Math with Mr. Dhillon
Varsity :- Currently doing mini unit on statistics ( mean, median , mode and MAD and Box and Whiskers plot)
and then will start with unit 5 Fraction Basics ( prime, composite and divisibility rules, prime factorization, GCF and simplify Fraction )
and then unit 6 Multiplication and Division with Fractions ( Integers , graphing and function.)
Scholastic :- Currently doing mini unit on statistics ( mean, median , mode and MAD and Box and Whiskers plot)
and then will continue with unit 4 linear Equation . 4.5 the point slope form , 4.6 parallel and perpendicular lines , linear equation word problems , 4.8 scatter plot , line of best fit and linear regression then will start with unit 5 Systems of Equations and Inequalities and unit 6 Exponents and Exponential Function
Honors :- Currently doing unit 6 Similar Triangles ( similar triangles and proving triangles similar , parallel lines and proportional parts and Parts of similar triangles)then will start with unit 7 Quadrilaterals ( interior and exterior angles of triangles, parallelogram, rhombus, rectangle , square, trapezoids and kite)
Mrs. Rapp’s Classes:
In Varsity we are working on Unit 4: Integers, Graphing, and Functions. This unit really shows our students what they need to know for Algebra as integers and graphing are so critical. We will be playing a variety of integer games and doing activities to master integers.
In Scholastic, before the break we took a quiz on the first part of unit 4 and got a 90% average on it. This was outstanding for this class and their highest average yet. Overall, their fall final was good, but due to absences we do not know our final class average yet. We have started working through the second half of Unit 4a on Linear Equations. We are off to a great start. Unit 4 Test is emancipated to be on January 21st.
In Honors we are working on completing a mini unit on the following topics:
Measures of Central Tendency
Mean Absolute Deviation
This unit will help students understand how to take data and analyze it. We will be using all of this to look at our test scores each unit and see how we did overall as a class. Honors will be quizzing on this unit later this week and next week starting Unit 6 on Similar Triangles.
Millennium High School
YEARBOOK ORDERS and SENIOR DEDICATION AD ORDERS NOW OPEN!
Yearbooks are on sale now! Yearbooks are $75. Now is the perfect time to order a 2019-20 yearbook for your student. We look forward to yearbook delivery day, May 15th. Orders are open through April 11th. Click HERE to go to our convenient online order center! Or you may go to yearbookordercenter.com and enter code 21362. You may also pay by cash, check, or card in the front office or by contacting Miss Lamanna, firstname.lastname@example.org
Senior Dedication ads in the yearbook are available and can include photos alongside a personal message to your son, daughter, or teammate. There are a limited number of pages available, so act quickly. The deadline to place an ad is 3/15/20. Credit cards accepted! If you have any questions, please direct them to email@example.com.
This Week in English….
Happy New Year and Welcome Back!
English One-All English One classes are learning about the life of Julius Caesar and ancient Rome as we prepare to read William Shakespeare’s The Tragedy of Julius Caesar. Students will be acting out scenes and memorizing famous monologues and soliloquies. Along with reading our first play, students continue to diagram, learn vocabulary and work on their writing skills.
English Two- All classes have finished the Kite Runner and are excited to start reading William Shakespeare’s Hamlet. Students are currently learning further information about the author and examining the conflict between Denmark and Norway. Hamlet focuses on betrayal, revenge, and morality. We are looking forward to reading our first play of the year! Along with the play, we are continuing our work with diagramming, vocabulary, and Latin and Greek Roots and Affixes.
English Three- The students continue to read Nathaniel Hawthorne’s The Scarlet Letter. We are enjoying unraveling the mysteries of the book and assigned our Unit Project this week. Along with our reading, we are continuing our work with non-fiction articles, developing our critical thinking and writing skills, and will soon begin work on the Romantic/ Gothic Era literature and authors.
English Four – Students are continuing to read The Road by Cormac McCarthy. This book examines the hope that a father and son still have in a world that is very different from our own. As they seek to survive their post-apocalyptic world, as a class, we continue to study our chosen universal themes of love and power. We will also begin to teach writing strong conclusions by adding them to all of our previous essays from the last semester.
Interested in donating to the Athletics program to help complete furnishing of the weightroom and equipment purchases: https://www.paypal.com/donate/?token=JV4bGcCRYeBxsAoeIm9378Hq0cPdQ5v5cVuYxrIDCxod5qM0FM8eQcBKQ-YhqrA_hGj2tG&fromUL=true&country.x=US&locale.x=en_US
Weekly Schedule (Girls & Boys Soccer, Girls & Boys Basketball):
Monday 1/13: V Boys Soccer @ Rio Vista, 5pm
Tuesday 1/14: Basketball @ Big Valley Christian, (5pm/6:30pm/8pm)
V Boys Soccer vs Stone Ridge Christian, 6:30pm, Played at Kimball
Wednesday 1/15: Girls Soccer @ Able Charter, 3:30pm, Played at Regional Sports Complex, Field #2
Thursday 1/16: V Boys Soccer @ Venture Academy, 3pm, Played at Regional Sports Complex, Field #2
Girls Soccer vs Venture Academy, 6pm, Played at Tracy High
Friday 1/17: Basketball vs Stone Ridge Christian, (5pm/6:30/8pm), Played at Tracy High
Girls Basketball: N/A
Girls Soccer: Falcons 4, Stone Ridge Christian 0
Falcons 4, Rio Vista 0
Varsity Boys Soccer: Falcons 3, Edison 6
JV Boys Soccer: Falcons 0, Edison 12
Varsity Boys Basketball: Falcons 54, Turlock Christian 36
Falcons 21, Brookside Christian 71
JV Boys Basketball: Falcons 54, Turlock Christian 68
Falcons 37, Brookside Christian 50
NOW HIRING: Spring 2020 Head Athletic Coaches-
Boys Volleyball: https://www.edjoin.org/Home/DistrictJobPosting/1228598
Interested in a coaching position not currently posted? Submit your coaching resume/application here for consideration in future openings: https://www.edjoin.org/Home/DistrictJobPosting/1143376
For donations towards Millennium Athletics in general, you can go here: https://www.paypal.com/donate/?token=JV4bGcCRYeBxsAoeIm9378Hq0cPdQ5v5cVuYxrIDCxod5qM0FM8eQcBKQ-YhqrA_hGj2tG&fromUL=true&country.x=US&locale.x=en_US
Follow Millennium Athletics on Social Media:
We appreciate your continued support! FALCON PRIDE!!
Upcoming Fundraisers for Athletics:
-Dine Out at Chili’s: January 15, 2020. 20% will go toward Athletics
-Mother Son Dance: February 8th, 2020
COUNSELING, COLLEGE, AND COMMUNITY NEWS!!!
Spring Delta College classes begin after January 21st, 2020. Student should check their mydeltaportal to confirm their registration and location/start date of their courses this year to start the semester off on the right path!
9th Annual TLC’s Got Talent Show – February 13, 2020 – TICKETS ON SALE NOW! $9.00 General Admission. Purchase your tickets from www.atthegrand.org from the MHS Counseling Office, or the TLC Main Office.
YOUTH NEEDED TO PARTICIPATE!!! The City of Tracy is currently accepting applications from teens and adults interested in serving on the Youth Advisory Commission (YAC). The Commission operates in an advisory capacity to the Recreation Division – Youth & Teen Services staff, the Parks and Community Services Commission, the City Council and other community groups on matters relating to youth in Tracy.
Members of YAC recommend and assist in the planning and implementation of youth programs and events and host forums on health, safety and recreation. Adult Commissioners will work with teens from all Tracy high schools, as well as City leaders and staff, to implement programs that positively impact the youth of our community. Adult Commissioners will also mentor the teens as they work with them on subcommittees and special projects. Both adult and teen commissioners attend monthly and scheduled meetings.
Youth Advisory Commission meetings take place on the second Wednesday of every month at 6 p.m. at Tracy City Hall, Room 203.
Teens between the ages of 14 to 18 and/or attending grades 9-12 in Tracy, as well as adults that live in Tracy, are welcome to apply. Applications may be obtained at the Tracy City Hall, located at 333 Civic Center Plaza, or by visiting www.cityoftracy.org and clicking on the Elected Officials & Policy link. The YAC application deadline is Friday, April 3, 2020.