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Celebrating Semester 1 in Middle School

Middle schoolers have been busy during the first semester! At an assembly, they shared some of their learning so far this year.
Grade 5: Mr. Willis’ history students have worked every Friday on dive-deep projects that allowed them to investigate moments or people in history that interest them. They documented their learning through 3D models, slideshows and other tangible displays used to educate their peers. Some topics they chose are the 9/11 terrorist attacks, the Berlin Wall, Egyptian pharaohs, and Anne Frank.

Grade 6: Students in Ms. Siskind’s English class studied “A Long Walk to Water,” a novel by Linda Sue Park. To elevate their learning, they could opt to make a map of the main character’s journey, write a poem about the book’s themes, or write a journal entry in the voice of one of the characters. These projects not only helped them to analyze the book and gain a deeper understanding but also encouraged them to develop empathy for the characters’ struggles.

“Ode to Water”
By Lyla Eidson
Oh water so clean and bright, 
Won’t you reflect our sun’s radiant light?
Oh take away the earth and sky,
For without water, we would die.
Your glittering clear abundant stream,
Your shining face makes the whole world beam.
Oh peek through the waterwell’s newly made spout. 
For those in Sudan are in a drought.
Your gleeful glint brings on a sigh.
You please the ones who aren’t satisfied.
With this ode to you, I shall give back
What you’ve given to us through your medal stack.
 -Thank you Salva for our water well. From Nya, and the village
Where my people are hydrated and safe.

Grade 7: Seventh graders talked about their field trips to downtown Denver as they prepare for their big trip to Washington DC. Earlier this year they rode the train to visit local landmarks like Union Station, Larimer Square and Coors Field. Back in class, they researched these locations and shared information with the class, just like they will do at our nation’s capital. They later toured the Judicial Learning Center and Civic Center Park, further practicing skills they will use on their spring excursion to DC. Finally, students presenting at the assembly described the upcoming trip to the Five Points neighborhood. 

Grade 8: English students in Katy Cooper’s class created graphic novels based on their own family stories after studying “Persepolis” by Marjane Satrapi. One student based her book on a story about her great-grandfather who hid Jews at his home in Greece before having to flee the Nazis during World War 2. 

The assembly also included academic excellence awards and kindness/character awards for the first semester. Congratulations to these students for their recognition:

Grade 7:
Math – Jackson Turner
English – Sophia Lepard
Science – Aaron Molina 
History – Sawyer Vinton
French – Eliza Caulkins
Spanish – Grace Lohr
Grade 8:
Math – Arden Gerlach
English – Eve Weiner
Science – Tori Fowler
History – Alex Geldzahler
French – Brićin Mahoney
Spanish – Amelia Birner
Kindess & Character:
Clarke Godfrey (5)
Sam Cheroutes (6)
Casey Eidson (7)
Charlotte Smith (8)

Graland Country Day School

Graland Country Day School is a private school in Denver, Colorado, serving students in preschool, kindergarten, elementary, and middle school. Founded in Denver in 1924, Graland incorporates a rich, experiential learning approach in a traditional classroom setting, emphasizing the development of globally and socially conscious leaders who excel academically.