Blake Middle School

Blake Program of Studies

Kathleen Emerson Social Studies Department Chair grades 6-12

Ancient Egypt

Students in Ms. Emily Alland's 6th grade World Civilizations and Cultures I classes presented their findings on Ancient Egypt to the visiting "King Tut," Pharaoh Tutankhamen. The students were required to know the material (no cue cards or reading from the slideshow) and explain the geography, social classes and economy of the Ancient Kingdom. D period's King Tut was played by World Language teacher Ms. Susan Boulos whose family emigrated to the US from Egypt. The students did an excellent job!

2020 National Geographic Geography Bee

Blake Middle School students once again took part in the National Geographic Geography Bee. Each social studies classroom held a contest and the individual class winners participated in a grade level competition. Then, the 3 grade level champions Rhudra Mishra (6th), Carl Kirchhoff (7th) and Max McGary (8th), competed in the finals on January 10th. It was a thrilling, hard fought event but Carl Kirchoff emerged the winner for the 2nd year in a row! Congratulations to Carl and all who participated.

left to right: Mr. Gregory Keohan, Social Studies teacher, Max McGary, Rhudra Mishra and Carl Kirchoff.

left to right: Mr. Keohan and Carl.

Curriculum Updates

How do we teach students about impeachment?

All Blake students are learning about the impeachment proceedings currently playing out in Washington. It is not often that students have the opportunity to see such a rare occurrence in the US. Here's what a few Blake social studies teachers had to say:

  • Mrs. McClelland said "We are currently learning about Rome, and I posed the question - "How does a government get rid of a ruler or leader who might not be doing what they are supposed to?" We discussed the impeachment process and watched a Ted Ed video which detailed it further. Just informing students that impeachment does not necessarily mean removal was a terrific lesson. We then discussed how Roman senators got rid of Caesar. Quite a different process from our own!"
  • Mr. Sullivan said "The students watched a CNN10 current events video after which we had a whole class discussion which included a review of the process of impeachment. In addition, we will be reading a BBC article later this week about the impeachment process as part of our look at checks and balances - a topic in our new Civics curriculum."
  • Mr. Keohan said "I adapted a lesson from Brown University's Choices program which allowed students to read primary sources from the current impeachment inquiry. The lesson includes sources from a variety of media sources. Students were asked to respond to prompts on Google Classroom."

Blake 7th graders visit Ancient Rome!

Blake Ancient Civilizations and Cultures II students journeyed to Medfield High School to take part in Latin Day presented by MHS Latin II and IV students. They enhanced their understanding of Roman history and culture by visiting stations which included topics such as Roman theater, gladiators, Pliny's Villa, Saturnalia and the Temple of Isis. The 7th graders enjoyed learning about Rome from MHS "experts." Gratias tibi!