Monday, November 11, 2013


Students, we are beginning our journey to learn about our mindsets.  Mindsets are beliefs that we each hold about our abilities.  In a Fixed Mindset, people believe that basic qualities such as intelligence and abilities are fixed, and cannot be developed.  They believe that only talent creates success.  They see effort as a sign of weakness.

People who have a Growth Mindset believe that they can develop their brain, their abilities, their talents.  This view creates a love for learning, a drive for growth, and a resiliency that is essential for great accomplishments.  They see effort as a strategy needed to reach their full potential.

Think of a time when you have encountered a Fixed Mindset.  It could be something that you believe about yourself, it could be an example from a book or a movie.  In your first paragraph, describe the fixed mindset.  In your second paragraph, describe a time when you have noticed a Growth Mindset.  It could also be an example from your life, or an example from a book or a movie.

Finally, make sure to read through the posts and comment on their thinking and their stories.  Comments should be thoughtful and add value to the conversation. I am eager to hear your thinking and your experiences about this!

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Wonder Precepts

Here is a presentation that has all of Mr. Brown's precepts, as well as some that the characters in the book sent to Mr. Brown throughout their summer vacation: 

Look through these precepts, and decide which one is most important to you.  
Why is it an important quote to remember?
What happened in the book Wonder that connects to this quote?  Give the example of what happened, and also spend a few sentences explaining why the two relate to one another. 

Remember to write your response on your Google Doc, then copy it into the blog.  Also, make sure you are signed in to the blog to post your response.  After students have responded, go back and comment to your peers.   Assignment due Tuesday, October 29th. 

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Wonder - Mr. Browne's Precepts

In the book Wonder by R.J. Palacio, one of the middle school teachers offers a piece of advice every month.  He calls them Mr. Browne's Precepts.  These are words of wisdom, quotes, or sayings.  Here are the precepts thus far:

September:  "When given the choice between being right or being kind, chose kind."
October: "Your deeds are your monuments."
November: "Have no friends not equal to yourself."
December: "Fortune favors the bold."

Choose one of the quotes that speaks to you.  Write a paragraph or two explaining why you think that quote is important.  What is it saying?  Why did R.J. Palacio choose that quote to include in the book?  Why do you appreciate that quote?  

After you respond - and allow others the time to respond - go back and read the comments.  Choose a few to reply to.  What did their writing make you realize?  Do you have additional evidence from the text to help support their thinking? 

Monday, September 30, 2013


Wonder by R.J. Palacio

On pages 151 and 152, Jack realizes why August has been avoiding him:  "I'd been talking to Julian about August.  Oh man. Now I understood! I was so mean.  I don't even know why.  I'm not even sure what I said, but it was bad.  It was only a minute or two.  It's just that I knew Julian and everybody thought I was so weird for hanging out with August all the time, and I felt stupid.  And I don't know why I said that stuff.  I just was going along.  I was stupid.  I am stupid.  Oh God.  He was supposed to come as Boba Fett! I would never have said that stuff in front of Boba Fett.  But that was him, that Bleeding Scream sitting at the desk looking over at us.  The long white mask with the fake squirting blood.  The mouth open wide.  Like the ghoul was crying.  That was him."  (pg 152)

Does it make it better that Jack wouldn't have said these things in front of August?  Why or why not?  What is the author asking us to stop and think about here?

Tuesday, September 17, 2013


Motivation is the drive and desire for success in whatever you are doing!
Being motivated is not something you do all by yourself. The most obvious people to help you are your teachers, parents, friends and others. These people are called mentors or role models, etc.
 (1)Who motivates you?
 (2)Who are your mentors or role models?
 (3)What words of wisdom do they share with you that helps you achieve success?