All posts by lspady

2020-21 Weekly Challenge #10: If I had a million…

If I had a million…

For this week’s Weekly Challenge, you will explore the length of ONE MILLION objects.  You have two options for your recording sheet:  you can either print a copy or fill out a digital version.

When you’re finished with the challenge, submit your work using the Google Form:

For inspiration, listen to How Much Is A Million by David M. Schwartz.


Student Voices Storytelling Project-Deadline Nov. 6

Nebraska Loves Public School presents…

Student Voices

Student Voices is a new exploratory storytelling project featuring students in Nebraska. Modeled after Humans of New York, this project will allow students to express their voice on issues impacting their education and everyday lives.

Students will tell a story about something important to them (i.e extracurricular activities, how current events are affecting them, their goals for the future, etc.) They will then upload 3-4 pictures to facilitate the story.

These Student Voices stories will be featured on Nebraska Loves Public Schools site and social media alongside selected students across the state.

Our Westside students have great stories to tell and we would love to see some of them featured! The deadline for the first round of Student Voices is Friday, November 6.  This project is open to all students K-12.

Please write your story on this Student Voices form and have your guardian fill out the release at the end. Take a look at the sample images for help in selecting your photos.

National Junior Honor Society Student Accounts

Calling all NJHS Members…

Create your own student account with a parent or guardian and upon doing so, you will receive the most up-to-date information about NJHS programs and activities.

Step 1:  Go to and select NOTE: If you are under the age of 13, the COPPA Parental Consent Form needs to be filled out first

Fill out the required information to create an account.  You should be able to find Westside Middle School without an Affiliation Number.  Once you’ve finished creating an account and it has been verified, you’ll be able to access the resources on the site.

2020-21 Weekly Challenge #8: Character Quotes

For this week’s Weekly Challenge, follow these simple steps…

Step 1:  Download Adobe Spark Post for Graphics from Manager.  Here’s a quick video tutorial on how to login.  You can also go to on a computer.

Step 2:  Create a new project that includes a quote from a character in a book you’ve read or from a book you’re currently reading.  Be sure to add the title of the book and the author.

Step 3:  Download your project and submit it here:

Don’t forget to check back next week to see the highlighted projects!


Science Mini Spark #5 Oil Eating Bacteria?

Researchers developed an inexpensive test to identify oil-eating bacteria that can clean up crude oil spills.

Watch this video about an oil spill, and

how we try to clean it up using bacteria.

Read this article to learn more about this topic. Pay close attention to the vocabulary words in the article. The meanings are listed on the last page if you need them.

Create a chatter pic to show what you learned


1. Find Chatter pic in manager

2. Make the main character a bacteria. You can draw it or find a picture.

2. Choose two of these questions to answer.  Write out your answer on paper before recording your video.

*Why is is bad when crude oil gets into the environment?
*Why do conventional methods of cleaning up oil spills present us with a problem?
What is a better alternative to conventional clean up methods?
What does a higher intensity of the red color of the Nile say about the oil-eating ability of  the bacteria in the new test?
What were the results of the Red Nile test?

Cotton Ball Launcher

Study potential and kinetic energy while building a fun launcher!

Collect your Materials

  • Short pencil or popsicle stick
  • Thin rubber bands (2)
  • Cardboard tube (2 empty toilet paper tubes or empty paper towel tube cut in half)
  • Packing tape or other strong tape
  • Scissors
  • Cotton balls
  • Single hole punch

Use the video as a guide and start building. Make sure to take pictures of your progress. If you want step by step picture instructions use this link.

Test it out!

In this activity, you used two types of energy to load and launch your cotton ball. As you drew back on the pencil with the cotton ball loaded, you added potential energy to the system. The farther you pulled back on the pencil, the more potential energy was being stored. When you released the pencil, the potential energy became kinetic energy, and the cotton ball should have gone flying through the air!

Make a pic collage with the pictures from your project. Include the energy terms and definitions as well.