Monday, December 28, 2015

Enjoy your holidays & a couple of news items related to Refugees

This news story may be found at:

This form of media offers up a section from the radio show The Current:

The link to listen to the story is here: 

I think it is important for you -- the students -- to know that the many Refugees who arrive in Canada will be happy and thankful for being here.  At the same time, there will be difficult and challenging times.  There will be an adjustment period (which can't be measured) to an entirely new culture and painful memories to work through.  Of course, human beings can be incredibly resilient and it will be up to us, as Canadians, to support our new citizens.  It is quite possible that they may end up at AMG.  What will we all do to help them feel welcome when we are face to face with a new Canadian or Canadians?

As some of your have explored other parts of the world in your projects, here is a short link to a discussion on CBC's Metro Morning about other non-Syrian Refugees who are also in need of support.  Think of this as another portion of a larger story on the settlement issues we have explored:
This is an 8 minute radio interview. 

For me, as a teacher, I am considering this book:
We have another month of Geography, before we move into the History curriculum.  Perhaps we will use this time to make some connections between some of the challenges, how we can be allies for Canadian newcomers, and some of the Historical concepts we will explore over the balance of the school year.  This book was written by Jan Stewart.  She is a professor at The University of Winnipeg.

Keep enjoying your time off.
image courtesy of image courtesy of:

Friday, December 18, 2015

Happy Holidays & Zedtangling

Have a wonderful rest.  I will not be assigning any homework over the break, which is in keeping with the TDSB Homework policy.  If there are any outstanding assignments, though, they will need to be completed.  
Enjoy your rest and the time you have with your family.

 Some YouTube videos:

There is research that exists that suggests this form of Art to be relaxing:
And now, for some examples.  The images may exceed the margins of the blog posting area, but I wanted to do the Art some justice.


The following two images are from from

My sample:

Thursday, December 17, 2015

IEPs, Chess Club, a coupon for the ROM, the Grade 7 Buffet, Happy chalk messages, Collages on the wall, "Rule of Thirds" link added, "A Good Lie" film, the last card off to Ottawa

Hang in there, the Holidays are almost here!  From

In addition to this note on a Chess opportunity, this coupon was handed out today:

The collages were compiled, at the back of the room and the marks will be returned ASAP!

The IEPs were sent home last week.  On the last page, please sign off on the document and return it, please.

As the week winds down, there have been some moments of relaxation for the Grade 7s.  We ate from a delicious buffet and spent some time, divided among the three classrooms.

The artist

Subsequent revisions, to the original work.

The "Rule of Thirds" link, for The Photography Club,has been added to the links section of the blog.

As we wind our way down in Geography (History will begin in February), we are concluding are viewing of The Good Lie.  It follows up on our documentary viewing in the early Fall of Lost Boys of Sudan.  While there are some subsequent documentaries on where the "boys" are now, I found something that may not be too long or overwhelming.  It is pretty cool and timely with the mention of the Chess Club that may start up at AMG.

This could be the last card off to Ottawa for our newly arrived Canadians.  I will let the card speak for itself:

- this may sound like a strange word, but the Resource group had a Study Sheet for the final test of the Number Sense Unit (on rounding and multiplying and dividing to three decimal places)
- final page (p.5) of IEP requires a Parent or Guardian signature and a return to Mr. Proudfoot

Monday, December 14, 2015

Andrew Austin: I feel I have made a pretty cool Math discovery, Photography Club link


Every so often, I may post some photos, but I rarely post items related to the Photo Club.  Anyhow, I suppose there is a first for everything.  The assignment for the past week was to look at the rule of thirds.

more information, and examples, may be found at 

Friday, December 11, 2015

Gena Casey videos: Dividing and Multiplying with decimals, Place Value review & hinting at some Grade 8 Math, using NASCAR to understand decimals, and Global TV footage of Syrian families at Lester B Perason

So, I am always trying to find some catchy video to supplement the work we may be doing in class.  I think I found something.  The smaller Math class is working on a final mini-unit in the Number Sense strand, which relates to Multiplying and Dividing by decimals.  It comes from one of the smaller expectations from the Grade 7 curriculum, so I thought I would share it with the group to solidify some of the skills we have developed this term and provide a sense of accomplishment that  we are capable!

Video #1:  The Casey Shuffle:

Here is a screenshot from the video.  It is something I would like you to write down.  Pay special attention to rule number 3.

This rule may also be applied to Division questions involving decimals

I felt it was important for the students to have some understanding of what "decimals" are, so we did a little review and refreshing with a KWL chart:

Ghalib was the student who asked the question about the HST and Drue asked the question and shared some ideas about rounding.  It is these types of questions, or recognizing what the students know, which helps fuel the class instruction.  Incidentally, Ghalib's interest in the HST relates to some Math that we do in Grade 8!

That particular Math, which Ghalib referred to, looks like this:

So, with the questions and remembering of particular things, a bit of review was in order.

 The question about rounding brought me back to a handy video and poem I used last year:

Find the number in its spot.
Go next door and see what you've got.
5 or more raise the score,
4 or less let it rest.
All the numbers to the right run to zero in a fright.

There was a student who did not quite conceptualize or understand what and why we might round numbers.  I thought of an image of a rocky hill being smoothed out.

There is a swimmer in the Math Resource group, and I was hoping to find a video to demonstrate how decimal numbers in photo finishes can determine who is the winner, but I could not find any.  So, I came up with a list of statistics from Wikipedia documenting the closest NASCAR finishes.

What might those finishes look like?

Place values, to the right of the decimal point, go on for a very long time.  In order for us to "smooth" out our statistics, we use rounding!  Sometimes, though, we may need the accuracy of the digits and particular Place Value to determine how we might rank particular information, like the results of a NASCAR race.

For homework, we will look at some rounding and multiplication, with decimals.  We will move onto dividing, with decimals, next week.

Let's take a look at Casey's approach to dividing:

I know this is not "rocket science," but I believe Casey's Shuffle applies to dividing with decimals.  We will give it a try, when we move onto decimals and dividing next week!

There are a set of videos on the Global webpage of our new Syrian families arriving at the airport.

- Resource Math:  both sides of Math sheet with decimal work
- Passport assignments due on Monday (please email Mr. Proudfoot with any questions)

Thursday, December 10, 2015


Plane carrying Syrian refugees arrives in Toronto Shared via the CBC News Android App

Arrival and the approximate route, and some "good" and inspirational news stories, another set of cards to Ottawa, Tam Nguyen, and homework

from the news story:

The plane has traveled from Jordan to Beruit, which is in Lebanon, to Germany, and then on to Toronto.  Want to see this route?  Take a look:

This is a lovely video, which I heard on Metro Morning, on CBC.  In a world so full of awful things, there is still a lot of beauty and love:

Another lovely story of generosity:

And another:

Our neighbours, at The Grove Community School, have raised over $30,000 and sponsoring a family from Syria.  The school was instrumental in setting up and organizing a challenge among TDSB schools to raise funds for families who were, and are, part of the Refugee crisis.  Way to go!!  More details may be found here:

Just to be clear, it is not entirely a project organized by Dewson PS. There have been countless other non- Dewson teachers and parents involved in the fundraising efforts.  Shout outs go to many of the teachers from The Grove Community School.

On the theme of positive news, I can remember traveling to New York City and stopping in a town called Ithica. From a small newsstand, I was able to pick up a copy of this newspaper called Positive News.  Interestingly, I shared a copy of it with a teacher, from The Grove Community School.  I intentionally wanted the news stories on today's post to be positive and full of hope.

Here is the link to that newspaper, which also seems to be online.

There is another batch of cards is off to Ottawa from the Grade 7 Geography class.  Nice work:

Tam Nguyen, who lives in Hamilton, comments on her own memories of being a Refugee from Vietnam:

- the sentence quiz, originally scheduled for Friday, will happen on Monday
- Passport assignment:  due on Monday  if an extension is required, please see me  :)

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

Using the Active Expression devices aka the "clickers"

These devices have not been used in a while:

They are paired with the classroom Promethean Board and offer students a way to type or respond to short quizzes that may be prepared by me.  I had some technical issues and had to wait until the IT department updated my Operating System, for me to use them again.

I am able to set up a series of questions, in a number of ways, for them to respond to by pushing the buttons on the Active Expression hand-held device.

Once this short quiz is graded and returned, we will move to doing some a written or typed quiz in relation to tests, and then on to our unit on Paragraphing.

Monday, December 7, 2015

25 000, on their way & Cards from AMG

Thanks to "double N" Tonny for sharing with me the link to the Immigration and Citizenship page from the Government of Canada for our newcomers from Syria.  Here is the link, for more information and a useful map of where the new Canadians will settle:

The first set of cards, created by the Grade 7 Geography students, were sent off to our MP, Julie Dzerowicz:

Off to Ottawa
- multiple choice sentence quiz on Simple, Compound, and Complex sentences