On March 15, Mr. Macha’s 8th-grade Language Arts classes hosted a special guest. Mark Drake, Associate Vice-President at L’Oréal, spoke to students about the steps to success in public speaking. As a chemist, Mr. Drake often presents his latest findings in microbiological engineering to large groups of industry professionals. His presentation at Soehl Middle School was designed to help students as they prepare to give their own argumentative speeches.
On December 8, Ms. MacDonald’s and Mrs. Urbanczyk’s 7th-grade Language Arts classes hosted their first ‘Invention Convention.’ Prior to the big event, students researched inventors, such as Samuel Morse and Jacques Cousteau, and learned about various inventions, such as the washing machine, scuba diving equipment, the telegraph, and pigeon photography. Students then designed a poster about their invention, created an iMovie about the inventor, and built a model of their invention using household items. Finally, at the convention, students and staff visited the various exhibits and competed in a scavenger hunt.
The seventh-grade students at Soehl Middle School participated in a cross-curricular debate for Mrs. Ferreira’s U.S. History class and Mrs. Urbanczyk’s Language Arts class. Students investigated and researched Andrew Jackson’s Indian Removal Act and policies against the Native Americans. After examining various primary and secondary sources, students wrote an argumentative essay regarding this issue. For a final activity, the students prepared for a culminating debate between two classes arguing whether Andrew Jackson’s Act was justified.
Lance Booth, a photo editor at the New York Times, visited Mr. Macha’s eighth-grade Language Arts classes to assist with his annual newspaper project. Students recently published newspaper articles for their peers to read using insider tips from New York Times writers. Each article lead was researched, explored and developed by means of student interviews at the school. This project was created by Mr. Macha and a team from the New York Times including editors, reporters and a photographer who have donated their time for the last four years .