This past week the students finished up their unit on probability and took their test on Friday. They will be getting their test back on Tuesday of this upcoming week. Please ask your student(s) to see their test and encourage them to do test corrections to ensure that they fully understand the concepts.

This week, the students will begin their unit on statistics discussing different ways to visualize data and analyze data. As the week goes on, ask your student(s) 1 – the difference between bar graphs and line graphs and 2 – what are the different central tendencies.

Challenge Problem Answers:

HW #81 – #19) 4/91; #20) 4/91

HW #82 – #15) 0.9965; #16) a) No, because the favor votes is 58%; b) 2,400 votes

Challenge Wall Solutions:

Problem #14 – The Game of 24: 1, 6, 8, 8

Solutions: [(8-6)+1]8; [(8+1)-6]8

Problem #15 – The Game of 24: 2, 6, 6, 8

Solutions: (8+8)+(6+2), [(8-6)+2]6, (2*6)*(8-6), [(6/6)+2]8

Problem #16 – A One-Hundred Headed Dragon

Solution: 100 heads – yes; 99 heads – no

This week in Literature & Composition, students continue working on their Poe essay writing assignment.  The focus for this essay will be the thesis statement, introduction, and topic sentences.  Students will then take one of those topic sentences to create a supporting paragraph.

We will end the week with poetry reading, comparing and contrasting student choices with The Raven.

Epaminondas of Thebes

Epaminondas (c. 418-362 BC) is a little known figure in Greek history. He was a brilliant Theban general, immortalized through doing what every Greek prior to him thought was impossible: namely, to defeat the “invincible” Spartans in hoplite warfare. He bested the Spartans at the Battle of Leuctra in 371 BC, and he did so by breaking with Greek martial tradition. It was customary in Greek hoplite battles for the best troops to be placed in the far right flank. Epaminondas decided to place his best troops in the far left flank—thus opposite the best Spartan troops. Further, he stacked his far left flank fifty men deep, also a break with tradition. The typical Greek phalanx was eight to twelve men deep, and the heavily stacked Theban phalanx gave the Thebans greater pushing power.

Review Week

Having completed our work with Chapter 8 in the Latin textbook, we will be taking a break from new material to review all of our declensions and conjugations, as well as the grammatical constructions that we have learned over the course of the year. We will also be working more with previous National Latin Exams.

Next week we will begin our work with Chapter 9, learning about the fourth conjugation of Latin verbs as well as special kinds of nouns that belong to the third declension.

The Roman figure project assigned to students a few weeks ago is due NEXT FRIDAY (March 4), and so students should start researching and designing their posters if they have not already.

Probability Test

This week we will finish our probability unit. Monday we are discussing probability within dependent events and Tuesday we are discussing estimating probabilities. After Monday, ask your student what the difference is between independent and dependent events. (Independent events are events that do not have an effect on each other and dependent events are events that effect the other.)

Our test is on this Friday, February 26th. The students will get their review on Tuesday, we will have time on Wednesday (and a little on Thursday) in class to work on the review, and then go over the review on Thursday during the second part of class. Please remind your students to be studying for the test by going back through their notes and reviewing definitions and reviewing their homework and review.

Challenge Problems:

HW #77 – #30) 1 to 8; #31) 5/8; #32) 1/9

HW #78 – #20) 11 to 9

HW #79 – #15) a) 5/18; b) 13 to 5; #16) a) 2/9; b) 7 to 2; #5) 3/16

Greek Tragedy

According to Aristotle (384-322 BC), tragedy is “an imitation of an action that is serious, complete, and of a certain magnitude” and which excites both pity and fear. The excitation of pity and fear in the viewer is the distinctive marker of tragedy. Without this excitation of pity and fear there is no tragedy. Pity, he says, is aroused by unmerited misfortune; fear by the misfortune of a man like ourselves.

One example of Greek tragedy is Sophocles’ Oedipus the King. Most are familiar with the basic plot of the tragedy, or at the very least how it ends. Oedipus, propelled by the inescapable power of fate, murders his father and marries his father. It evokes pity because his end is unmerited—he did not do anything to deserve it. It evokes fear because everyone (at least in the ancient Greek mind) is bound by fate.

Wrapping Up Edgar Allen Poe

We will continue one more day of review, moving the Poe exam back to Tuesday of this week.  Students will continue analysis on each story:  literary elements of setting, characters, plot, conflict, and theme, and literary devices that Poe used to convey those elements to the reader.  This has served to deepen their understanding of Poe as well as prepare them for the test.

Poe’s stories will be our springboard for writing summaries and analytical paragraphs throughout the rest of the week.


The students started their probability unit at the end of last week and will dive deeper into the unit this week. We will talk about mutually exclusive events, independent events, and dependent events. The students seem to be excited about working with probability and connecting it to events they have seen in their life all ready. Ask your students what the probability of 1 means (the event is certain to occur) and what the probability of 0 means (the event is impossible).

Last week, the students took their Unit 9 Test which will be passed back this week. Please encourage your student to do test corrections if he/she did not do as well as they would have liked on their test.

Challenge Problem Answers:

HW #75 – #11) 10,192 combinations

HW #76 – #39) 1/2 or 0.5 or 50%

Wall Challenge Problem Solutions:

Problem #11 – The Game of 24: 1, 2, 5, 6

Solutions: (5+6+1)2 and [5-(2-1)]6

Problem #12 – The Game of 24: 4, 5, 8, 9

Solution: [9-(8-5)]4

Problem #13 – Joan of Arc

Solution: 1431

Answers to Friday’s In-Class Problems:

Page 398:

#2) 6; #5) 42; #8) 6; CDE, CED, DCE, DEC, ECD, EDC; #11) 5,040; #14) 840; #20) a) 65; b) 20; c) 130; d) 110

Page 402:

#2) 20; #4) 35; #6) 364; #8) 319,600; #10) a) 3; b) 3; c) 1; d) 7; #12) 1,260

The Birth of Philosophy

In 585 BC, a Greek from the region of Ionia named Thales accurately predicted an eclipse of the sun. This would strike a blow to the world of myth-telling, the world of Homer and Hesiod, where such events would normally be seen as effects of the agency of the unpredictable gods. Thales wanted something that would provide a rational basis, a foundation, for further investigation. Thus philosophy (and science for that matter) had been born, and the quest for the ἀρχή (arche)—a Greek word meaning “the beginning, the origin, the first principle, or the foundational basis of existing things”—had begun. Thales decided that the ἀρχή was to be found in water. Of the four Greek elements (fire, water, earth, and air), water was the most widespread and was associated with life and the generation of life. Thales was wrong, but the most important aspect of the movement he started was that people could now have arguments about such things.

Edgar Allan Poe

We end our Edgar Allan Poe readings this week with The Pit and the Pendulum.  We will devote significant time identifying and discussing the literary devices that Poe uses to create mood and convey themes in his stories.  At the end of the week we will review all of the stories in preparation for the Poe Exam on Monday, February 22.