All posts by lspady

2022-23 WMS EY Learning Opportunities

Welcome to the 2022-23 School Year!  EY at the middle school looks a little different than elementary.

You will not be pulled out of class regularly like you were in elementary.  Instead, there will be various contests/learning opportunities offered throughout the year.

In addition, your WMS teachers work extremely hard to offer voice and choice in their individual classrooms and provide many opportunities for your to challenge yourself.  Make sure to take advantage of those opportunities and continually seek out ways to take ownership of your learning.

The list below is not all-inclusive, but gives you a starting point for some of the opportunities available this year.  Be sure to fill out the Google Form so Dr. Spady can contact you when these opportunities become available.

Battle of the Books: This contest is a mix of comprehension book knowledge along with project based activities specific to the books. Students are not required to read all ten books, but instead the reading can be spread out amongst the team members.  Check out the list of books here:

United States Academic Pentathlon (USAD): Academic Pentathlon tests students in five different subject areas (math, literature, fine arts, science, and social sciences).  Students can choose to compete in 1, 2, 3, 4 or all 5 subject areas. There will be review sessions prior to the competition and the regional competition will take place in February.

Quiz Bowl: Quiz Bowl will meet on a weekly basis after school on Mondays from 3:20-4:00.  Additional after school times and Warrior Time may be added.  Quiz Bowl members will have an opportunity to participate in various Quiz Bowl competitions throughout the year.

Cribbage and Chess Club (CCC): CCC will meet on a weekly basis after school on Tuesdays from 3:20-4:00.

MATHCOUNTS: MATHCOUNTS provides engaging math opportunities to students of all ability levels in order to build confidence and improve attitudes about math and problem solving.  The WMS MATHCOUNTS Team will meet on a weekly basis after school on Tuesdays from 3:20-4:00.  We may also occasionally meet during Warrior Time.

Writing Contests:  Various writing contests pop up throughout the year and there are usually prizes involved.  If you’re a writer and would like to be notified when a contest starts, mark it on the Google Form.

Spelling Bee:  All WMS 7th and 8th graders will take a qualifying spelling test in their LA class sometime between Oct. 10-21.  Approximately 50 WMS students will be invited to participate in the WMS Spelling Bee which will be Friday, Nov. 18.  This will be an online test provided through Scripps.  The top 2 WMS students will be invited to participate in the District Spelling on December 16.

Geography Bee: All WMS 7th and 8th graders will take a qualifying geography test in their Social Studies/History class in early January.  Approximately 50 WMS students will be invited to participate in the WMS Geo Bee which towards the end of January/early February 2023.  During the WMS Geo Bee, students will also have an opportunity to participate in a Science Bee and a History Bee.

Don’t forget to fill out the Google Form!

Science Mini Spark #11

Microbes that Could Eat your Trash

Each year humanity produces roughly 400 million tons of plastic, 80% of which is discarded as trash. Of that plastic waste, only one-tenth is recycled. 60% gets incinerated or goes into the landfills, and 30% leaks out into the environment. Fortunately, there are microbes that may be able to take a bite out of this growing problem.

After watching this video, answer these questions in an interview format. You are the interviewer and the interviewee is a plastic starfish.

How are man made polymers different than those found in nature ?

What are some common forms of plastic?

How do you break plastic’s chemical bonds?

What  never before identified bacteria was found in the lab from this video.

Why type of engineers worked on the project to create super enzymes?

What was discovered in Japan?

Turn your work in to the EY coordinator to earn this mini spark.

New Enzyme Sets a Speed Record

If you want to read about a new discovery check this out!!! This article is from May 2022.

2022-23 WMS Battle of the Books

Did you participate in Battle of the Books in elementary school and wish there was a way to participate in middle school?  Well you’re in luck because on May 11, 2023, there will be a Middle School Battle of the Books Competition at ESU #3!

Send an email to Dr. Spady (spady.lynn @ if you’re interested in participating in Middle School BOTB!

2022-23 Middle School Battle of the Books Book List

  1. Barefoot Dreams – Petra Luna
  2. Before the Ever After – Jacqueline Woodson
  3. I Must Betray You – Ruta Sepetys
  4. Echo – Pam Munoz Ryan
  5. The Last Cuentista – Donna Barba Higuera
  6. Nine, Ten: A September 11 Story – Nora Baskin
  7. Lines of Courage – Jennifer A Nielsen
  8. Inside Out and Back Again – Thannha Lai
  9. Fall Out: Spies, Superbombs, and the Ultimate Cold War – Steve Sheinkin
  10. Amari and the Night Brothers – BB Alston
  11. Flight of the Puffin – Ann Broden
  12. Beyond the Bright Sea – Lauren Wolk

Language Arts Mini Spark #70 Why is there a “B” in doubt?

Cat- C-A-T     Dog. D-O-G

Not all words have spellings that are as clear and easy to remember as these two. Watch this TED ED video about why there is a “B” in doubt.


Record all of the forms of doubt and double from the video. Do research to add more words to your list that were not mentioned.

Make an ABC book with a word for each letter that includes a silent letter.

Read this information page about Latin. Record several important details as you read.

Read more about silent letters at Wonderopolis. Take the Wonder Word Challenge or Test Your Knowledge when you are done reading.

2021-22 EY Challenge # 8

Countdown to Summer!

Summer is almost here and this EY Challenge is going to help you think of different ways to express and think of the numbers 20 to 1 as we countdown to summer!

Task:  Create a Google Slides presentation, Pic Collage, or use any other app on your iPad to create a graphic for 20 days, 19 days, 18 days, etc. (see picture below). NOTE:  If you don’t start this challenge until later this week or next week (or the following week), you don’t have to go back and do the ones that have already passed.  BUT, in order to be included in the prize drawing, you have to complete at least 15 days total.

When you are finished with your 15+ days, you can email them to Dr. Spady at spady.lynn @

Some resources that might help you…

Science Mini Spark #10 Scared of Snakes?

Visit this video and learn more about vipers without having to actually see one in person. 

Choose a project below to create to earn this mini spark. 

* The word “Viper” comes from what term, meaning giving birth to live young? Make a definition page with this word with the definition and five other interesting words from the video.

* What allows the viper’s fangs to be extra long? Research snake fangs and create a pic collage or other visual with your findings. 

* How does the snake’s rattle make noise? Draw a pictures showing this process. 

Share your work with your teacher or your EY coordinator.


Author Visit at WMS-April 7

“My stories are 6.8 parts fiction and 3.2 parts crazy stories from my life. I guess that’s what happens when I make bets with my stepson and end up in a BMX race . . . or I pretend to be a monkey in a treetop adventure with my daughters . . . or I get caught in a thunderstorm with my husband on a bike several miles from the nearest town. The list goes on . . .”

Quote from Angela Welch Prusia:

Come meet Angela and learn about her journey as a writer of young adult novels.  She will have novels available for purchase ($10 each).  Check out the flier below!
If you are interested in attending this workshop, email Dr. Spady at spady.lynn at