Welcome to Mrs. Lori LoCascio’s teacher page.
I wish all of my Eighth Graders the best of luck next year in high school. It was a true pleasure to have taught you over the past two years. Please keep in touch, and do not hesitate to reach out to me for advice next year. St. Augustine School has prepared you well for future challenges you may encounter.
Student supply List and Summer Assignments for 2020-21 School Year, Incoming, Seventh Graders:
Supplies necessary for first day of Seventh Grade:
3 Notebooks for Wit and Wisdom- labeled knowledge, Vocabulary, Response.
Pens, pencils, and erasers
Post-it notes and highlighters to annotate text
Markers and crayons
A math 3-ring binder with loose-leaf paper
A religion, 3-subject, spiral notebook
A social studies, 3-subject, spiral notebook
Tissues and wipes
Math summer work:
Math is all around us and affects our every day life. It is not just the computation of numbers with the rote memorization of math facts. It includes logical reasoning and problem-solving for real world solutions. It does not exist in a vacuum, but is part of a larger world associated with history, anthropology, language arts, and science. This summer, you are to research 3 potential career choices of your interest and natural “wheel-house.” You are to explain how math impacts your success in these 3, chosen fields. Please Include quotations from leaders in the fields you chose, and explain how math has enabled each respective leader to be the best at what they do. Based on your research, comprise a five-year plan for the math courses you will take in high school. Will you just accomplish the basic requirements, or will you delve into higher, advanced mathematics? There is no right or wrong answer, as you know, no two people are exactly identical. What suits your needs may not necessarily suit the needs of your classmates. Be honest with yourself, and be proud of what you choose. In order to receive full credit on this assessment, you must cite the websites where you obtained your information.
Language Arts Summer Assignment:
The fiction book assignment is as follows: A. Create a notice and wonder chart, as you are reading the book, for each chapter. B. Create a summary of each chapter. C. Take three scenes from the book and “explode the moment”, as taught in Wit and Wisdom, by adding character thoughts and feelings, sensory language, dialogue, similes and metaphors. [How to explode a moment: 1. Choose any scene from the book where you think the author could have done a better job in describing the scene to the reader. 2. Add more details/interest/adjectives. 3. Have the characters in the scene talk to each other through the use of dialogue. You get to decide what you want the characters to say to each other or himself (monologue). Use your imagination. 4. Create your own original similes or metaphors to add more interest to the scene. Do your best! If you have questions about exploding a moment, feel free to email me.] D. What was the climax of the story? How was the main problem resolved? E. Make five judgments about the main character , and back up your judgments with text evidence (something the character did or said)to support your judgment. F. . Would you recommend this book to a peer? Why or why not? and G. Using the ToSEEC paragraph format of Wit and Wisdom, record how the character changed his or her identity from the beginning of the book to the end of the book. Be sure to include evidence and elaboration. In order to receive full credit for this assessment, your response must be typed, double spaced, and 12 point font, Times New Roman. This assessment must be submitted via email prior to the first day of school, or you must come on the first day of school with a hardcopy in your possession.
In addition, this summer, you are required to read a nonfiction book of your choosing. Please email me your suggested reading choice before starting, so that I may approve it for grade appropriateness. Please make your selection, and email me at email@example.com by June 10, 2020.
Please answer the following questions about the non-fiction book you chose to read: A. What did you learn about the person or topic? B. Who was the author? Did their perspective of the person or topic affect your understanding? C. Have you ever read another book about this topic or person? If so, was there any information that conflicted with what you already learned about this person or topic? D. Did this book give you the incentive or curiosity to find another book about this person or topic? In other words, what information did the book leave out that you are still curious about?
Past due Assignments: Week of May 26th:
You attend a Multiple Intelligences School, because your parents value the benefit of enhancing all of Howard Gardner ‘s “smarts”, as attached below, within you to increase your chances of success in a global economy.
1. Create at least 5 goals for the summer that will improve your “smarts” in each section of multiple intelligences. Specify exactly how, (what action, at what frequency level) will you do to attempt to accomplish your goals.
2. Answer for each goal: Why did you choose the goal? Is it a long-term goal or short-term goal? What indicators/factors will you use to measure the success of each goal? Will you be the judge of success or will you seek the support of a family member or friend?
3. How will social distancing restrictions change the scope of each of the 5 of your summer goals? For example, maybe you were going to meet one of your body smart goals by attending a sports camp that had now been canceled, so you have to re-think how the goal will still be met, not cancel the goal all together.
4. Brainstorm ways that we can use the pandemic to “re-invent” ourselves and communicate positive messages to others that may feel isolated or depressed.
5. Create a vision board ( artistic poster) to advertise your 5 goals of summer. Take a picture of your vision board and post it by Thursday at noon. Respond to 3 if your peers’ vision boards with a positive message about their vision board.
Past due Assignments for week of May 18th:
Week of May 18th:
Assignments due by Thursday 3pm:
Read Chapters 6 and 7 of M.C. Higgins the Great, create summaries and notice and wonder charts for each Chapter separately. Answer the following questions:
1. What songs does Banina choose to sing for the dude in her audition tapes?
2. Describe the morning ritual between M.C. and his mama every morning. Why do you think M.C. is happy that mama picked him over his other siblings.
3. What does M.C. talk about on their walk to the lake?
4. At the end of Chapter 7, why do you think M.C. chooses to introduce himself to the girl as M.C. Higgins the Great?
Continue working on your rough draft of your thesis paper. Submit your rough draft by Thursday at 3 pm. Remember this was a 2-week assignment that you are continuing from last week.
This upcoming weekend is Memorial Day weekend. What is the purpose of Memorial Day? Is it just celebrated in the United States? How do the goals of the celebration align with Catholic values? Include text evidence to support the alignment. Please include your sources used in your research. This response should be one-page, 3 paragraphs.
Create 3, Memorial Day-themed, word problems and post by Tuesday at 3 pm. Answer 3 word problems of your peers, and post by Thursday at 3 pm. For example: The Town Memorial Day parade lasts for 90 minutes. The parade features the high school marching band, the Veterans group, the local Boy Scouts, and the Chamber of Commerce “kick off to summer” speech. How long will each of the four participants get to present their information, assuming you give them equal show time. Solution: 90/4 = 22 minutes and 30 seconds each.
Past due Assignments for week of May 11th:
Language Arts/Reading: Last week you were asked to read Chapters 3-5 of M.C Higgins The Great. Create a separate summary for each Chapter. Please answer the following questions:
- Why does M.C.’s father, Jones, feel that strip mining machines are not real machines?
- Describe the “rough housing play” between M.C. and his father, Jones.
- Why does M.C. get insulted when his father calls him “M.C. Higgins, the Great”?
- Why was M.C. disappointed when his father said that his mother could record music in Nashville by taking a two day trip by herself, instead of the whole family having to move to Chicago?
- Have you ever had a “friendly competition” with your parent or sibling that “went too far” and turned to jealousy over the parent’s or sibling’s ability to do something better than you can?
- Identify the author’s use of a simile or metaphor within the Chapter. Do you think it is an effective one? Why or why not?
- Make a judgment about M.C. based on something he did or said in Chapter 4. Support your judgment with text evidence.
Explode a moment in Chapter 5 using characters thoughts and feelings, dialogue, sensory language, similes and metaphors. Why did you choose to explode this moment? How does your explosion choices give the reader more insight, as compared with the author’s description of the scene.
Religion/Math/Social Studies cross-curricular activity:
It’s time to take a virtual field trip of your choice! If you need suggestions, feel free to choose from the Princeton University Art Museum, the Brooklyn Botanical Gardens, the Bronx Zoo, Saint Patrick’s Cathedral, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Norman Rockwell Museum, IFly in Paramus, NJ, or a Broadway play. You are going to critically analyze their website, interactive experiences (if any) and create a persuasive essay, brochure or poster as to why this is a “must see” religious, cultural, or math-infused experience. If you choose to create a brochure or poster, feel free to take a picture of your brochure or poster, and include it as an attachment on SeeSaw. Please include the monetary and time commitment to take this trip. It must be a trip that could be accomplished on a bus in a day’s time. (In other words, you can’t take a trip to the Sistine Chapel in Italy.) Be creative! In order to receive full credit for this assessment, you must convey the educational benefit that would be gained from taking the trip.
Social Studies: Please begin creating the rough draft of your thesis paper. Using your outline, with the three reasons why your thesis statement proves true, create 5 paragraphs, one introduction, one conclusion, and one paragraph per reason. You will have two weeks to create the rough draft. Please submit it on SeeSaw when you are finished. I will give you feedback necessary to continue to the next step.
PAST DUE Assignments for week of May 4th:
Next week will be designated “assessment week”. The assessments will be open book, meaning that you can consult your books and notes, but not each other. Obviously, we will use the “honor system” code of ethics, as I can not verify that you did your work independently. The assessments will be due on Friday, at 3 p.m., and Thursday and Friday will be designated as “reading days” of Chapters 3-5 of M.C.Higgins the Great and community building events of “would you rather” games, etc.
past due Assignments for week of April 27th for 7th grade:
Please send me a quick SeeSaw post. I will read it, and send it back to you. It will not be published for your peers to see. I want you to be honest about your stress level of the workload so far. Am I giving you too much work or too little work in one week? Please be honest; I want to maximize your education, by pushing you as far as you can go, but not at the expense of your mental health. If you find the workload manageable, please let me know how many hours a day it takes you to complete the assignments. Thanks so much. Also, let me know if you are able to complete the assignments independently, or whether you are relying on the support of your parents (which is okay to consult your parents, don’t get me wrong). I just don’t want the burden to be too high for them.
This week, we will be doing a cross-curricular project, based on a common reading from your EPIC online library, M.C. Higgins The Great.
Reading – Please read Chapters 1 and 2, 64 pages total.
Language Arts – create a notice and wonder chart for each chapter, separately. Create a summary of each chapter, separately. Write 5 adjectives to describe the protagonist of the story. Why did you choose those adjectives? Make two judgments about the protagonist. Use text evidence to support your judgments.
Religion: Do you think the protagonist is a religious /faithful person? Why or Why not? Provide text evidence to support your reasoning?
Social Studies: This story takes place in the Appalachian Mountains on Sarah’s Mountain, a fictional mountain in Kentucky, near the Ohio River, that is being sought by a mining company. Research 5 facts about history at that time. Include the song and superstitions of the “hill people”. Provide the websites you used to obtain your information. Why do you think the author chose to use the fictional mountain of “Sarah’s Mountain”?
Math: Please practice percents, discounts, and sale prices on Khan Academy.
past due assignments for Week of April 20th:
Social Studies: We are continuing the thesis paper, long-term project. This week, you are responsible for creating an outline for your thesis paper, in accordance with the sample below. Please note, that if your four sources with text evidence from last week only support one or two reasons why your thesis statement is true, this week’s outline will require you to do further research of sources, so that you have at least one source to support all three reasons why your thesis statement is true.
I. Introduction –
A. Thesis Statement
B. Reason One why thesis statement is true
C. Reason Two why thesis statement is true.
D. Reason Three why thesis statement is true.
II. Reason One – explain reason one in detail.
A. Evidence and Elaboration of reason one
B. Evidence and Elaboration of Reason One
III. Reason Two – explain reason two in detail.
A. Evidence and Elaboration of reason two.
B. Evidence and Elaboration of reason two.
IV. Reason Three – explain reason three in detail
A. Evidence and Elaboration of reason three
B. Evidence and Elaboration of reason three.
V. Conclusion – summary of 3 reasons and support of thesis statement
Language Arts – Please check your school-issued e-mail address for instructions on joining my Epic Books teacher account. This week you will be responsible for reading the narrative, non-fiction book, The Story of the H.L. Hunley, about the Civil War. After reading the book, please respond to the following:
- Why is this book considered narrative, non-fiction?
- Create a one page summary and reaction statement about the book.(one typed page total)
- Choose a scene from the book, and “explode a moment”, as learned through Wit and Wisdom, with, characters thoughts and feelings, figurative language, sensory language and dialogue.
Religion – after having researched the differences between the Old Testament and the New Testament, create a compare/contrast graphic organizer. Critically analyze five similarities and five differences. You may use your religion book as a resource, but please extend your research beyond the book. Please include internet sources used at the end of your graphic organizer.
Math- We will be exploring sales prices, percents off using coupons, calculating taxes and discounts. You will have a choice on how to solve your problems. As long as you show your work, you will receive full credit for this assessment, regardless of which method you choose. For example, if a $40.00 shirt is 25% off, and you are asked to calculate the sale price of the shirt, you can choose to calculate the discount, then subtract the discount from the original price; or, you can just calculate the amount of 100% you will be paying, 75%. Therefore, in the example above, both methods will receive full credit:
$40 x .25 = $10; $40-$10 = $30 sale price
$40 x .75 = $30 sale price.
Please complete the following problems, below, then create 3 of your own. Solve 3 of your peers’ problems, once posted. Please create your original problems and post by Wednesday at 3 p.m., so your peers have Thursday and Friday to solve your problems.
- Mary can buy a shirt at Old Navy for $25.oo. The shirt is not on sale at Old Navy. She can buy a $35.00 at the Gap, who is having a 20% off sale. Which shirt is cheaper and by how much?
- Whole Foods is having a 15% off online sale for groceries. If you go into the store, they will give you 20% off. How much money will Bobby save if he is planning on spending $150.00 on groceries if he goes into the store, versus shopping online?
Past Due Assignments for Week of April 6th:
Language Arts/Social Studies/Religion cross-curricular activity: research Easter traditions around the World. Create a brochure, power point presentation, poster or any creative expression of your choice. For example, where did the tradition of dying Easter eggs come from? Where did the tradition of Easter Egg Hunts derive? What are different traditions for the items used to stuff the eggs for the Egg Hunt? Your creative project must include at least 5 traditions, and have the website sources where you obtained your information, to receive full credit for this assessment.
Would you rather? Create 5 “would you rather scenarios” and post them to SeeSaw. Answer 5 of your peers’ questions. Be sure to include the “why” part of why you chose one scenario over another. For example, “would you rather eat peanut butter and jelly for a month and have to stay at home, or be able to go outside as you please, but eat apples and bananas? Why?”
It is that time of the beginning of a new month. Therefore, please vote for your “March student of the month”. This person must have exuded positive behaviors towards others while working from home, on SeeSaw. Please include why you chose who you did. As always, until everyone casts their vote, I will not approve the posts on SeeSaw.
Math: Ask you family for their favorite Easter recipe. Convert the ingredients to fractions and decimals. For example: “Grandma’s favorite, secret sausage stuffing: 1/2 cup of almonds or .5 cups of almonds, 3/4 of a stick of butter, or .75 of a stick of butter…..and so on….”
These assignments will be due on Wednesday at noon.
past due assignments from Week of March 30, 2020 work: Please post all work to SeeSaw when completed.
Religion: Create a video on SeeSaw. Pretend that you are the owner of a Roman Catholic Summer Camp whose mission is to teach the campers how to incorporate acts of kindness into their daily lives. How will you persuade the campers into signing up for your summer camp, as opposed to other camps offered in town, such as sports camps? How will you persuade the parents to register for your camp because it is the best option for their child’s emotional growth? This assessment will be based not only on creativity, but also your ability to infuse Catholic values into your message (reference to the Ten Commandments, Beatitudes, bible verses, missions of Saints ect.). The video should be approximately 2 minutes long.
Social Studies: If your thesis statement has been approved for your research paper, this week you are to provide 4 internet-link sources that you have researched to support your thesis statement. Specifically, you must include a quotation or two from the source that you will use as text evidence in your paper. For example, if your thesis topic is “The Boston Tea Party”, not all scholarly articles on the Boston Tea Party will specifically address the support of your thesis. You need to read the article, and critically analyze whether the article supports your statement. You need to explain to me how the source you chose supports the thesis statement.
Math: create an hourly journal of your activities for one day, 24 hours. Determine in percentages, fractions, and decimals the amount of time you spend on each activity. For example, if you ate meals from 9-10 a.m., 1-2 pm, and 6-7 p.m., you would record 3 hours, out of 24 hours eating, and translate 3/24, or 1/8 into percentages and decimals. If you slept for 7 hours, you would translate 7/24 into percentages and decimals. If you are on your phone texting 5 hours… and so forth.
Language Arts: The final draft of your identity personal narrative is due this week. If you have submitted your rough draft from last week, please use the checklist below to edit your work:
1.Did you capitalize the beginning of each sentence?
2. Is there a punctuation mark at the end of each sentence?
3. Did you indent 5-spaces for each of the 3 events that marked your identity? Each event must have its own paragraph.
4. Did your introductory paragraph include a ToSEEC topic sentence that introduces the reader to your personal narrative?
5. Did your closing paragraph include a ToSEEC conclusion statement that lets the reader know you have finished discussing the changing events to your identity?
6. Does each of the 3 – identity-events paragraphs include enough evidence and elaboration to prove the change in your identity, assuming the person does not know you at all? Did you describe in detail, with evidence and elaboration who you were prior to the identity-changing event?
The answers to the checklist questions, as well as your final draft must be submitted, to receive full credit for this assessment.
8th grade assignment for week of March 30th
If your thesis statement has been approved for your research paper, this week, you are to provide 4, internet-link sources that you have researched to support your thesis statement. Specifically, you must include a quotation or two from the source that you will use as text evidence in your paper.
Past due work from Week of March 23rd:
1. One-page examination of conscience of how you have related to family this past week while at home. Did you act as a peacemaker when helping siblings with homework? Helping prepare family meals? Sharing resources?
2. Bible verse study: read the Bible for 20 minutes every day. Record what messages speak to you. What is God trying to teach you about your life as a 7th grader and the future? 1 paragraph per day.
Language Arts: personal narrative. 5 paragraph minimum following the Wit and Wisdom ToSEEC method of writing-topic sentence, evidence, elaboration, conclusion, and Wit and Wisdom recurring theme of change of identity. Provide at least 3 examples of evidence in your life that has changed your identity. Was the change positive, negative, or both? Explain why. For example, if you were an only child, and then a younger sibling was born, you changed to a “big brother “ or “ big sister”. If you received the Sacrament of First Communion, your identity was changed. If you were a “public school student “ and changed to a “private school student” your identity changed. If you moved towns, your identity changed from a resident of Town A to a resident of Town B. If you joined a travel soccer or gymnastics team, your identity changed.
Social Studies. Brainstorm a topic and thesis statement for a future essay that we will be writing together step by step. The topic and thesis statement must relate to last week’s Chapter topics, but should be of something that interests you personally. For example, your topic could be the Declaration of Independence.
The thesis statement that you are trying to prove is the Declaration of Independence was a sign of state rebellion.
Math: please review the concepts of converting fractions, decimals and percents on Khan Academy. If you have to use your flash cards that you made last week to help you, at first, it is okay. Try to commit the conversions to memory, though.
Post 3 word problems about conversion on SeeSaw. Answer at least 5 word problems of your peers. For example “Mary gets $10 to spend every week. She spent 50% of her money on White Castle and 1/4 of her money on video game apps. How much money does she have left? Express your answer as a decimal.
8th grade social studies: Please check your school-issued gmail account. I have sent you an invitation to join my SeeSaw classroom. Please follow the instructions on the invitation. We will be corresponding strictly through SeeSaw, and will not be using this homework website for communication of assessments. Thanks so much.
Thank you for your support, and please continue to check this homework website, every Monday. Instructions will be given as to whether to submit assignments via SeeSaw, or to my personal email, firstname.lastname@example.org