Welcome students!!!! I look forward to spending the year with you.  

Welcome to my new eighth graders!!! We'll start the year getting to know each other, talking about how I'll run the class, and we'll immediately start reading and writing about a piece that focuses on the power of words and strength of character - two common themes I'll pull in our readings throughout the year. It would be wise for you to review the literary devices and writing types you learned in seventh grade; we'll start quickly with both. - I look forward to spending the year with you - Mrs. Halpin

Students, remember Three Before (asking) Me (if you are absent or have a questions) 1. Check the website; 2.Check with your study buddy; 3. Check the Absent Work folders in the classroom.  

Once you've done ALL OF THOSE, if you still have questions, come see me IN PERSON during PAW or HIRE. 


  • Class help/make up time : every Monday at PAW
  • Class help/ make up time: every Tuesday and Wednesday during PAW - come get a pass from me first!!!
  • Class help/ make up time: every Thursday and Friday during your class HIRE

Wish list
: donations are always greatly appreciated!

Scholastic Book Orders
  • Order online :online code GWZFL  or order by check/paper orders are in class.

About Me
I truly enjoy the art and exploration of the written word. I hold a Bachelor's Degree of Art in English and Comparative Literature from the University of San Diego, and received my teaching credential through USD. I also hold a Master's Degree in Educational Leadership and Administration. I'm a San Diego native and graduated from La Jolla High School where I was the editor of the yearbook and really active in the service organization KeyClub. My parents were both teachers, so I always knew I'd wind up in a classroom - I loved everything about school from the start. I started teaching immediately after college and I've taught eleventh and twelfth grade in Chula Vista, seventh and eighth grades in El Cajon, and now have been middle school in Carmel Valley for the past eight years.  In my stay-at-home-Mom years when the boys were young, I volunteered and taught art for their elementary school, too.  My hobbies include reading, writing, running, knitting, baking, and going to Torrey Pines any free moment I have.
    Other things about me:
    I'm an avid reader. I've been in the same book club for over 20 years! It started with four other former San Dieguito employees: Hilary Crain, Martha King, Linda Huston, and MaryBess Holloway. Here's a look at some of the titles we've read.
    I love to write. I won an award for this piece about my youngest son, Dillon, when he was just a few years old. I also co-authored a children's book, Water, Weed, and Wait and it was published in 2010.
    I love photography, and play with scenes whenever we're traveling. This year we will visit Las Vegas, Nevada for soccer; Ogden, Utah for skiing; Kihei, Maui for a beach-trip; Yosemite; Idyllwild; and two of my sons will go to Alaska for two weeks with their grandparents. 
    I've been married to Jim for almost 25 years. We love to explore nature and work in our garden. Right now we're growing lemons, limes, oranges, bananas, strawberries, peaches, avocados, lettuces, tomatoes and many herbs. Jim was also a literature major but he's a non-fiction reader. If you want a good Civil War or American history reading, he's got a title for you.
    We  have three sons (18, 16, 14) and they each play an instrument and at least one sport (soccer, swimming, water polo) and everyone surfs. We're an outdoorsy family. We went to Yosemite in April of last year, and in November we hiked the Narrows at Zion - the water was under 40 but we had dry suits from our toes to our necks. This past summer we spent three weeks in Maine and New Hampshire - canoeing, fishing, rock climbing, biking, running.  
    I have a new love, too, and her name is Makena. She's my first dog; she's a Boxer/Shepherd/Pointer/ super fast runner friend. I absolutely adore her - she runs to greet me when I come through the door!! :)

    Here's my latest project. Thanks period 5 for getting me inspired.

Subpages (1): Class Policies