Quarter 4 2018 (Year End Wrap Up)


May Madness resulted in a tremendous community-building event as efforts by those who weren’t even debating were celebrated. From civilization entrance dances to artistic flags, everyone contributed to widely successful 2018 tournament. Congratulations to both Grace Hasselbeck and Claire Gracey for coming out on top!




May Madness Overview

These past few weeks found students immersed in a tournament for the ages.  The annual May Madness Debate style tournament determining who had the greatest ancient civilization afforded students the opportunity to put all of their research/public speaking skills they’ve learned throughout the year on display.  Did it provide some anxiety, stress, late nights, anticipation, and even heartache?  YES.  Was there an overwhelming response after the last debate from the students that this was one of their favorite units of the year? YES! All this to say is at the end of the day, if I can hear students up and down the hall talking, arguing, debating about history, then I can sleep well this summer until we do it all again next year.

What a blessing it has been for me to have the opportunity to teach this amazing group of multi-talented students.  We have learned so much together. The journey has not always been easy…Is it supposed to be?  With that, I love Mr. Champion’s mantra of the power of “Yet” as this is such a powerful lesson for all of us no matter how old we are.  Embracing the idea that I might not have something “YET” is especially fitting for middle school students as they deal with so much change in their world. Mr. Scott’s world history students, thank you for allowing me to learn alongside you this year.  I am excited to see what your next chapter brings in this journey.

Below are moments of debate from the last week of our May Madness Unit–Finding the “Greatest Ancient Civilization!”

Civilizations put to the test to determine who was the greatest!




I thought it would be fitting to send you out with a reminder about what it takes to be a civilization–DJ Jazzy J style. Enjoy and make it a great summer by making history!







Author: jkscott13

With the utmost confidence, I can genuinely say, I get paid to do what I love. Growing up I never envisioned myself in the teaching profession, but as fate would have it, I am in my 15th year. My dad was a teacher and coach in the public school system for 35 years. I am sure his joy for teaching and life subconsciously weighed heavily in my pursuit of the profession. My passion for teaching didn’t fully develop until I spent the next four years teaching, coaching, advising, and dorm-parenting at New Hampshire boarding school called New Hampton School. Here, because of great mentors, I was able to truly cultivate a passion for embracing the philosophy of developing the whole child. For the past nine years, I have tried my very best to carry that holistic approach into my classes at Ensworth. At the end of the day, what I desire most is that the student not only knows I care for his or her learning about the skills of becoming a historian but also experience what I believe to be the true meaning of success. My greatest mentor, John Wooden said it best, “Success is someone giving their best to become the best they are capable of becoming.” This is what drives me to teach and coach every day. First and foremost, I believe energy is essential for a classroom to thrive and that competition is a language most middle school students speak. Maybe it means me dressing up like a caveman and holding court cases about the social issues of pre-historic man. In Grade 6 Ancient World History, students dress up like Egyptians and Greeks for a month and participate in our Olympic games. We finish the year by debating who was the greatest ancient civilization in a March Madness tournament fashion. In Grade 8, U.S. History, the emphasis shifts and students express their mind through debates, Harkness discussions, and navigating research with “history labs.” Fun Facts: Played for the 2001 Rose Bowl Champions--The Washington Huskies My chair in class is an exercise ball. I once sang "All Good Gifts" in the musical, Godspell. I have an alter ego, DJ Jazzy J that does "wrap up" sessions at the end of flipped skills videos. My family loves to play games all the time. Some of our favorites include, "Settlers of Catan" and "Beyond Balderdash." Growing up, I wanted to be a country singer, now I live in Nashville and get to teach some of my idol's kids.

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