The purpose of this blog is to share insights into educational issues affecting Jerome Middle School. These could be new teaching strategies; new ways of grading; new ways of holding students accountable; new ways of getting students involved in their learning; or even new ways of getting parents more involved in the events at school. I hope that these posts will help answer some questions about happenings at JMS!

Sunday, September 18, 2011

What describes a JMS Student?

We are back in the swing of things at Jerome Middle School. We have had our "opening assemblies" where students listen to lists of expectations; teachers have set up classroom procedures; and, students are getting used to new classes, and new lockers. But, what does it really mean to be a student at Jerome Middle School? I had all of our advisory teachers ask that question of our students. The students brainstormed a list of words and phrases that described what being a JMS student is all about. Advisory teachers sent me the lists, which I compiled into a long list of single descriptive words. Here is what the students came up with:
This "jumble" of words is called a "word cloud." The concept of the word cloud genrator is this: it takes a list of words and "clouds" them based upon the frequency. The words that show up more often are larger than those who show up once or twice. You will see that "Effort, Pride, and Respect" are three of the largest words - the motto of our school. I discuss these three words - what they mean, and what they LOOK like with students at the beginning of each year. It warmed my heart to see that they had the largest frequency of words that students used. This word cloud now hangs in all of our classrooms, in the locker-rooms, in the library, and even in our cafetorium. As students go through their day at JMS, they know what it means to be a JMS student - their own expectations. It's going to be a great year!

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