PRHS 9th Grade

Posted by Dr. Brian Miller on 5/20/2022 3:00:00 PM

Pine-Richland High School (PRHS) 9th Grade

ArrivalArrival and Activity Schedule
Like most mornings, it was a smooth (and quiet) bus ride this morning. Most students are relaxing, listening to music or even snoozing a bit. We had time to go to the cafeteria to eat breakfast and talk before the start of the day. It was an activity period today at the high school so that seniors could go to the stadium for a class picture. At the high school, there is usually an activity period for special topics, group meetings and other activities.

Health and Physical Education
Students are working on a SMART goals project (specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, timebound). Most students had identified goals related to exercise, nutrition or stress management. Mr. Koss described the motivational impact of monitoring results and tracking progress. Students shared in small groups or partners with a few examples for the whole class. The class then moved to the gymnasium for a choice of basketball, volleyball, cornhole, badminton or cardio in the fitness room.

Gym / Class


Spanish 2
Senora Hines welcomed the class with some Spanish dialogue and conversation. Students are working on a history and culture project in class related to a decade in Spanish history (1950s through 2000s). They are working on preterito (“past tense”) and using the learning activity as an opportunity to practice (e.g., people, events, etc.). I was able to share some recent cultural experiences from a trip to Spain.

Honors US History
Working in small groups, students are completing a DBQ (Document-Based Question) related to analyzing primary and secondary sources. Related to the Spanish-American War, students focused specifically on contextualization. Placing the event in context is designed to help situate that event and more accurately understand the war (i.e., before, around and after). While almost all students were in-person, one student was able to actively participate from home via Google Meet and the interactive display board. Each team of students provided a whole class update about one of the documents so that all students could update their graphic organizer. Dr. Poole also shared with students that she and two other Advanced Placement teachers are evaluating the essays together to strengthen inter-rater reliability. This practice will help students develop a clear understanding of future expectations.

Honors Orchestra
Students are preparing for the upcoming orchestra concert. Mr. Belchick has delegated the “conductor” duties to several students. Approximately 40 students were present for today’s class to run through the concert selections. There was a sharp contrast between “The Avengers” and “Por Una Cabeza.”


Honors Biology
As final preparation for the Keystone Biology Exam (including a motivation speech), Ms. Demsey’s students played “Around the World” and Cahoot review games of biological concepts and vocabulary.  Ms. Demsey was able to reteach and review critical concepts based on the student response. At Pine-Richland, students take the Keystone Biology Exam in either ninth or tenth grade at the conclusion of the biology course.

ELAHonors English 9
As the final unit of the year, each student will conduct research using credible sources. Mr. McKown gives each student the opportunity to select a question of interest in an area where the student does not already have background knowledge. For example, “How do neurologists map the human brain?” and “How did the continents get their names?” The websites used for this project must conform to specific database sources. The skills required for this project are critical for scholarly work and have practical application beyond high school. Students will use MLA citation format, select direct quotes and paraphrase each quote. For this class, the results of this learning activity will also serve as a building block for the final exam. This project is a great example of the application of skills learned through prior experiences K - 8 can then be applied to more complex assignments. The image to the right was developed during the ELA In-Depth Program Review.

Friday is “PT” day in the Air Force Junior Reserve Officer Training Corporation course. The cadets (and I) had the opportunity to get stronger with: push-ups; crunches; squats; lunges; jumping jacks; etc. Major Morrison and Chief Gasperetto shared that enrollment for 2022 - 2023 at this point is 126 cadets (90 from PR and 36 from Mars). This number represents the largest historic enrollment for each group and in total. Several years ago, Pine-Richland School District and Mars Area School District entered into a crosstown agreement that allows Mars students to join this program. The combined enrollment has allowed the program to continue and grow. Great job today by the cadets!


Honors Geometry
Throughout the day, we heard about the challenge of the group quiz. The learning goal and assessment focused on geometric probability. Thank you to Mrs. Walker for the opportunity to show our knowledge!