Jim Starrs

    Social Studies/Language Arts Teacher         

    Phone: 780-6552
     I hope you all had a great Spring Break. I enjoyed visiting National Parks and Monuments in New Mexico.
    Now we're back for the rest of the school year. Please stay on top of deadlines and progress so that there are no nasty surprises come June. The research project has started in Language Arts. It will peak on Arts Night/Open House June 12. I'll do a midterm reading check on April 26.
    April is National Poetry Month. We'll explore some aspects of poetry in the next few weeks. Here's a favorite of mine. It works well with Easter too.

    The Second Coming

    BY William Butler Yeats
    Turning and turning in the widening gyre   
    The falcon cannot hear the falconer;
    Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold;
    Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world,
    The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere   
    The ceremony of innocence is drowned;
    The best lack all conviction, while the worst   
    Are full of passionate intensity.
    Surely some revelation is at hand;
    Surely the Second Coming is at hand.   
    The Second Coming! Hardly are those words out   
    When a vast image out of Spiritus Mundi
    Troubles my sight: somewhere in sands of the desert   
    A shape with lion body and the head of a man,   
    A gaze blank and pitiless as the sun,   
    Is moving its slow thighs, while all about it   
    Reel shadows of the indignant desert birds.   
    The darkness drops again; but now I know   
    That twenty centuries of stony sleep
    Were vexed to nightmare by a rocking cradle,   
    And what rough beast, its hour come round at last,   
    Slouches towards Bethlehem to be born?


                                                                                                 cycling in Italy
    This last summer I celebrated a milestone birthday by cycling in the Dolomites and Alps of Italy. This picture is on the Passo Forcola di Livigno. It wasn't the highest or the most challenging, but it was sunny and the mountains were inspiring. After getting to the top (and enjoying a nice lunch break) I was treated to almost 34 km of mostly downhill to Tirano. This was the last day of a week of cycling.
    After all that exercise I'm pumped about starting another school year. I'm looking forward to soaring up and over challenges, enjoying nice breaks, and exhilirating along well-deserved stretches.
    This will be another year with my great teaching partners. Ms. Barrett and I will each teach language arts and social studies to half the students on our team. Ms. Evans will teach all the science classes. Ms. Speerstra will teach all the math classes.


    1958: I was born in New York City and lived there three years.


    1961: I moved to Chicago. There I started my school career in Ms. Hanburger’s kindergarten class.


    {Skip forward many years during which I continued my schooling through elementary school, high school, college, and post-graduate studies. I also developed my love of travel, bicycling, reading, the outdoors, art, and many other things.}

      travel    bicycle    reading    outdoors    art

    2018: I teach 6th grade social studies and language arts at Sakai Intermediate School. Even though I have been teaching in the Bainbridge Island School District since 1990 (a long time) where I’ve been happy and lucky to work with great fellow teachers, great families, and the best students in the world, every year brings something new for me. 

    This year we'll have some things the same and some different. We'll still have our classrooms side by side on the 100-south level of Sakai. We'll still teach the same subjects and get to know you as individuals. Students will have language arts and social studies classes with one teacher and those classes will still be scheduled to be back-to-back. The new things this year will be details like our new ChromeBooks and small tweaks to the curriculum.

    I've had a good summer--some travel as mentioned above and some work on projects at home. I'll take one more quick trip to visit family in the DC area and then I'll be back getting our classroom ready. I hope to have fun working and learning with you this year. 

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