The middle school English program encourages students to read intentionally, write effectively, and speak confidently. The course covers four main areas: reading, writing, language, and novels. Students engage in activities that develop their critical reading, writing, and analysis skills. Students analyze texts through the eyes of a reader and writer as they create their own compositions and complete performance-based assessments. By reading high-interest, diverse, and contemporary novels, students develop enthusiasm for literature, as well as make connections to the world around them. Daily writings are often in response to previously assigned reading where students write cohesively and effectively, citing evidence, drawing conclusions, and making connections. Creative writing takes many forms throughout the year. Grammar, usage, and mechanics instruction is given using different resources to improve the quality of students’ writing. Classroom libraries and online articles offer students the opportunity to read for pleasure while building their comprehension skills.
Seventh grade curriculum provides a strong conceptual understanding of mathematics through the use of effective learning experiences that promote communication, reasoning, and problem solving. In Grade 7, math instruction focuses on four critical areas:
• developing understanding of and applying proportional relationships,
• developing understanding of operations with rational numbers and working with expressions and linear equations,
• solving problems involving scale drawings and informal geometric constructions, and working with two- and three-dimensional shapes to solve problems involving area, surface area, and volume, and
• drawing inferences about populations based on samples.
Group activities, projects, hands-on lab work, individual research, and curiosity-driven inquiry are hallmarks of all middle school science classes. Seventh grade starts the year with a review of measurement techniques and lab procedures that prepare them to work safely and effectively in the science lab.
The focus of seventh grade science is how matter and reactions are the basis for life science. Earth and space science standards are addressed from a perspective based on matter and reactions (atmospheric composition, combustion, and climate change). The curriculum is in keeping with national standards and includes six core ideas:
• guiding principles and scientific skills,
• the organization of life from atom to molecule to cell to organism,
• cell structure and function,
• genetics, diversity, and heredity,
• interactions in an ecosystem and cycling of matter, and
• human activity and environmental change.
Seventh grade curriculum focuses on world history and geography with an emphasis on the Middle Ages to the exploration of the Americas. Students explore the cultural, economic, geographical, historical, and political changes of Western Civilization in Europe as well as the geographic regions of East Asia, West Africa, and Southwest Asia and Northern Africa. They examine the growth in economic interactions among civilizations as well as the exchange of ideas and commodities. Students describe the indigenous populations of the Americas and the long-term impact of European exploration in the New World. In addition, students continue to learn about the historical context of ancient and major world religions. Throughout the course, students develop the skills of a historian as they research and analyze primary sources, organize information, and form logical arguments.
The middle school curriculum emphasizes a balance between academic skills and soft skills. It is designed to prepare students for high school in terms of content knowledge as well as essential life skills such as work ethics and time management.