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Academics Middle School

AVID

6th Grade

The 6th grade AVID Elective course is an introduction to the AVID philosophy. Students will develop an awareness of the values accompanying academic goals and success. The course will focus on building students’ self-confidence and communication skills in working with peers and adults. Students will be exposed to reading strategies that will assist them in building vocabulary and understanding a variety of texts and will also focus on pre-writing techniques, summary writing, and structural components of note-taking. Students will increase college and career awareness through guest-speaker presentations, field-trip opportunities, and research.
 

7th Grade

The 7th grade AVID Elective course builds upon the foundational components of the AVID philosophy. Students will refine short- and long-term goals and, as a result, begin to understand the value in taking charge of their actions. They will start working on intrapersonal and interpersonal skills as well as formal and informal speech. Students will complete self-evaluations and peer evaluations related to reading, writing, organization, and speaking. In broadening their writing practice, students will begin considering audience, purpose, and form in their writing. Students will take an active role in their learning, understanding the roles of all members in assignments and collaborative lessons. They will expand their knowledge base regarding note-taking in relation to studying and test preparation. Students will be exposed to various field trips, guest speakers, and research to increase their knowledge of college and career options.
 

8th Grade

The 8th grade AVID Elective course is the year of preparation for high school. Students will regularly exhibit and utilize the skills and strategies learned in the 6th and 7th grade AVID courses. They will refine previous goals, focusing on their transition to high school as part of a college-preparatory path. Their writing will focus on completing all steps of the writing process and varying style, word choice, vocabulary, structure, and voice. Major writing assignments include persuasive, expository, descriptive, and timed writing. Students will transition from active learners to leaders. Other areas of focus include increasing the use of technology and building upon test-preparation and test-taking knowledge. Students will broaden their experience with analyzing text and utilizing appropriate reading strategies in various settings. They will become more involved in guest-speaker presentations and field trips, particularly as they relate to preparation and prior knowledge. Students will also participate in college-preparatory testing and build connections with the high school they will attend. 

Elective Wheel

6th Grade Electives

All 6th graders take a rotation of 4 classes which explore the possible pathways at HS2: Green Architecture, Design & Modeling, Science Enrichment, and CS Makers & Innovators. Giving students the opportunity to explore the variety of pathway options allows students to become familiar with the many possibilities within the STEM fields. Students get a “sample” in each of these classes and can begin to hone in on their passions as STEM students. The choice in electives may change each year. Each rotation lasts 9 weeks. 

7th Grade Electives

Building off the previous 6th grade wheel, the 7th grade wheel provides even more opportunities for exploration and growth within the STEM pathways. Students will take a rotation of the following 4 classes: Technology 7, Medical Detectives, Automation & Robotics, and Science Enrichment 7. These classes course content may change each year and like 6th grade, each rotation lasts 9 weeks. 

8th Grade Electives

After two previous years of self-discovery and exploration, 8th grade students are able to choose two of the following four classes as their elective courses. Students have spent the previous two years growing their passion for various STEM topics and are now able to take these passions and apply them to focused courses. This year, students will take two from the following four classes: Art 8, Infection Detection, and Video Game Design. Each rotation lasts a full grading period. 

 

English Language Arts (ELA)

6th Grade - Under Construction

7th Grade

In 7th-grade Language Arts students refine their reading and writing skills by diving into learning expeditions that require higher-level reading and writing skills. At the same time, students are asked to be critical thinkers and strong communicators.
 

8th Grade

In English Language Arts, students will develop and strengthen their verbal communication, writing, and reading skills through learning expeditions that focus on journalism, the legal system, and unique forms of storytelling. ELA will include a focus on collaborative projects, including creating newspapers and participating in a mock court trial, as well as individual writing work. In addition to news articles and short nonfiction pieces, students will read independent choice novels and participate in book clubs. 

Intro to Spanish - 8th grade only

In this class, students will develop basic communication skills through reading, writing, speaking and listening; while acquiring knowledge of basic grammatical structures needed for effective communication and building vocabulary. Students will investigate products, practices, and perspectives of the Spanish-speaking culture. By the end of the year, students should be able to hold short conversations and respond to oral and written questions in Spanish. This class is only available to 8th graders. 
 

Leadership

In this course, students will explore different leadership styles and how they apply to their own strengths as leaders. Students will study noted leaders throughout history. Leadership students will plan and execute campus social activities such as club fairs, socials, dances, and other school-wide events. Application required.This class is available to 6th, 7th and 8th grade students and it takes the place of supervised study in student's schedules. 
 

Math

Math 6/7

Students will solve problems involving the four operations with rational numbers, create and manipulate algebraic expressions, write and solve inequalities, analyze and solve proportions, explain and use formulas to find area and volume of geometric solids, apply scale factors to geometric figures and scale drawings, and investigate and use probability models.
 

Math 8

This course focuses on having students present the proof or process towards the solution. Students will analyze, evaluate and solve linear equations, investigate patterns of association in bivariate data, graph and solve systems of linear equations, apply properties of angle relationships, understand and apply the Pythagorean theorem, explain and apply properties of integers. We will also explore geometry with surface area and volume of geometric shapes. 
 

AGS 1

The Algebra/Geometry/Statistics I course is the first in a three-course sequence.  The first course focuses on the Algebra concepts, solving linear functions, modeling with linear functions, solving systems of equations, using arithmetic and geometric sequences to develop linear and exponential functions, as well as graphing functions.  Geometry concepts include congruence, construction and proof using lines, angles, triangles and other two-dimensional figures.  Statistics concepts include basic measures of central tendencies spread, and position.
 

PE/Health

Students will discuss the value of physical activity for a higher quality of life and life-long fitness. Health classes are integrated into the Physical Education curriculum. A variety of teaching techniques and assessments will be used to teach the health topics of alcohol & drug prevention, control of disease, healthy eating, mental, social, emotional, environmental and sexual health, unintentional injury, and violence prevention.
 

Psychology of Achievement

Students are selected to be invited to this class based on prior-year academic data. This class is available to 6th, 7th and 8th grade students and it takes the place of supervised study. Students in this class improve their academic achievement through a variety of motivational techniques and interventions. Students work closely with the teacher and others in this class to become better students and find more success academically and in their own identity as learners.  The selection for this class is made by the administration, teachers, and counselors.
 

Science

6th Grade

This is a foundational lab-based integrated science course. Using the processes of scientific inquiry, engineering design, and critical thinking students will discover and apply patterns in such topics as cell, tissue, organ, and organ systems, ecology, energy, electricity, and magnetism. An important aim of the course is to develop and build students' performance in problem-solving, scientific literacy, and technical communication skills that will be useful in later science courses. This course will address all grade level ODE structure and function, interaction and change, inquiry and engineering standards.
 

7th Grade

This is a foundational lab-based integrated science course. Using the processes of scientific inquiry, engineering design, and critical thinking students will discover and apply patterns in such topics as cell processes, genetics, and heredity, sexual and asexual reproduction, weather and climate, water cycle, force and motion, human impact on the environment, layers of the atmosphere, weathering, erosion and deposition. An important aim of the course is to develop and build students' performance in problem-solving, scientific literacy, and technical communication skills that will be useful in later science courses. This course will address all grade level ODE structure and function, interaction and change, inquiry and engineering standards.
 

8th Grade

This is a lab-based integrated science course. Using the process of scientific inquiry, engineering design, and critical thinking, students will discover and apply patterns to develop explanations on topics such as natural selection and evolution; matter, atomic structure, and chemistry; geological time and changes to the Earth over time; and gravity and the reasons for the cyclical observable patterns in the Sun-Earth-Moon system. An important aim of this course is to develop and build students’ skills in problem-solving, scientific literacy, and technical communication that will be useful in later science courses. We will also focus on making data-informed decisions through inquiry-based engineering projects. 
 

Social Studies

6th Grade - Under Construction

7th Grade

In this course, we look through the lenses of Movement, Regions, Location, HumanEnvironment Interaction, and Place. We develop our skills to analyze maps, graphs, charts, and data. Most importantly, we have fun answering questions of who, what, where, when, why and how. Ancient Civilizations – How did humans take the leap from predominantly nomadic hunter-gatherers to people that both put-down roots and extend branches to all corners of the globe? Who am I? Who were they? Who are we? This course helps answer these questions in a year-long study of ancient civilizations.

8th Grade

Students will study the history, government, and economics of the United States between 1765 and the Civil War. Major events studied include the American Revolution, the development of democracy, the Constitution, and the Civil War. Students will be exposed to many opportunities to analyze sources, take notes, write, think critically, consider civic engagement, and read & interpret information displayed in maps, charts, graphs, etc.
 

Supervised Study

This class is designed to allow students time to complete classwork assignments and prepare for tests during the school day. Students are in class with other students who may be able to collaborate with them and assist them with completing work.