Congratulations students on completing your 1st. semester of high school! Continue to work hard and persevere to do your best and gain all five credits needed to become a sophomore! We are committed to providing you with a strong academic foundation so that you can become successful in all future endeavors.
The primary objective of MAP Out a Plan to CARE was to help our students generate the intrinsic motivation necessary for giving their full effort on the upcoming round of MAP tests. On Tuesday January 22nd, we dedicated three periods to indicate to students the seriousness with which these tests need to be treated; another part was to show them our commitment to their success on these tests. During this day, our teachers reviewed with students their MAP scores and conferenced with them, individually, to create goals for the upcoming test. Students also worked on sample MAP problems in Math, Reading and Science.
You can click here to view some photos from this event.
Please read below for individual content area updates...
English - Robert Murphy
The Morton Freshman Center English Department is excited to begin the new semester. During the second semester, students begin perfecting the art of persuasion by applying new rhetorical strategies to the writing of argumentative essays. Parents interested in the argumentative essay can find information in their student’s writing handbook. Students will also further their study of literature through Shakespeare and poetry during this semester.
Math – Scott Montgomery
Happy Second Semester from the Morton Freshman Center Mathematics Department! Well your children have successfully finished their very first Final Examinations. This is quite an accomplishment for them. What is next for our students in Mathematics? In Algebra and Honors Algebra, they begin their studies of polynomials and quadratics. In Geometry, they start identifying and classifying all of the various quadrilaterals such as kites and parallelograms. In Honors Geometry, our students will analyze polygons and their angles such as the octagon and pentagon.
Social Sciences - Jim Conley
The first semester for the department has been a busy time of remaking our curriculum, designing new Common Core Assessments, and training students to complete advanced level Document Based Questions in all classes. Our content teams have been implementing new literacy strategies to work on the social studies skills of cause-effect and inferring main ideas from complex primary sources. Additionally, we worked hard to implement a number of school-wide holiday observances. As measured by our content exams, this year’s classes are making remarkable progress in meeting both content and national literacy standards. We are currently in the process of designing a brand new course for 2013-2014, AP World History that we hope will challenge our students in an even more systematic way.
Science – Niki Gamboa
As the semester came to a close students spent time studying and focusing on final exams. Now that exams are completed and second semester has begun it brings with it exciting topics such as DNA, Cellular Division, Genetics, Evolution, and Taxonomy. Students will be exploring the world of DNA by removing DNA from strawberries, investigating DNA structure and the process of protein synthesis.
ELL/Bilingual – Angela Barrera
The ELL and Bilingual Department is preparing for a busy second semester. ACCESS testing of all ELL students begins on Monday, January 28th. We will also preparing for our next Bilingual Parent Advisory Committee meeting. Students in ELL 4 finished their persuasive essays, and are now embarking on a quarter of poetry that will include analysis of the classics, contemporary poetry, as well as hip hop. We are collaborating with NEIU on providing tutoring services to some of our students in the areas of World History and Biology.
Physical Education/Health – Joe Hovanes
1st semester students finished out the semester well with the best final exam scores we've had in years. All students in PE finished their daily running at 10 minutes a day. Health teachers are sad to see their kids move on but are excited for the next group. Health students did very well on the final exam. They also accomplished a lot during the semester with having a speaker, Career Cruising, and Red Ribbon Week. Good luck 2nd semester.
FC Literacy/Technology Committee – Mary Burke
The FC Literacy/Technology Committee strives to create an active community of readers and digital learners at the Freshman Center. It supports the school-wide literacy initiative with a variety of activities and events such as field trips, author visits, community events, and school-wide promotional programming. First-semester committee-sponsored events and activities include:
- “Decades” Homecoming promotional tie-in
- FC Book Club field trip to Steppenwolf Theatre: The Book Thief
- FC Book Club field trip to Chicago Public Library You Media technology center for a digital media arts workshop
- Scholastic Book Fair
- One-to-One Book Club: Fern Schumer Chapman author visit
- Festival Invernal (holiday community literacy event)
- Daily Sustained Silent Reading program: Time 2 Read
The One-to-One Book Club, a book club for FC students and staff members, met in November to discuss Is It Night Or Day by local-author Fern Schumer Chapman. The historical fiction book is based on the experiences of the author’s mother when she fled Nazi German as a young girl. Chapman visited the Freshman Center on November 20 to discuss the immigration experience with students and also participated in the lunchtime group book discussions. Each student selected to participate received an autographed copy of the book to keep.
Over 100 families attended the fifth annual Festival Invernal, a holiday literacy event for young children in the community, sponsored by the Morton Freshman Center Literacy Team, FC Library, and FC Literacy Club. Children ages 3-7 were invited to the Morton Freshman Center on Wednesday, December 5 from 4-6:30pm for an evening of holiday fun. More than 100 student volunteers assisted at a variety of stations and also served as hosts, guiding the 180 children through six interactive stations. Parents had the opportunity to work with Northeastern Illinois University artists to create two different holiday crafts. Special musical guests included the Mariachi Band. Families received free books and information on reading and literacy. Five reading gift bags were raffled off during the event. The free holiday event was supported through Federal Title 1 funds.
FC Library – Mary Burke
The FC Library provides materials to support the curriculum and enhance student learning. Students have the opportunity to utilize a wide range of print and electronic library resources, as well as a variety of computer applications. Recent library class research projects include a wide variety of Photo Story 3 and iMovie movie projects across the curriculum: book trailers (ELL), endangered species (Biology), macromolecules (Biology).
Members of the FC Book Club read and discussed six books during first semester, and celebrated the holiday season with a gingerbread house decorating event in the FC Library. Members are currently reading The Hot Zone and 13 Reasons Why.
Anime Club members continue to meet weekly in the FC Library. Representatives from the Morton College Anime Club often attend the meetings and provide art and drawing instruction for the students. Students have learned how to create movies in iMovie, create original art on Bamboo digital drawing tablets and record podcasts with GarageBand.
The FC Library served over 500 cups of hot chocolate to students and staff on December 20 during the annual holiday FC Library Read-In. Students had the opportunity to read for pleasure and check out books to read over the holiday break.
Ms. Mayra Barahona-Arroyo
Ms. Angelica Rodriguez
Mr. Norberto Izquierdo