MIDDLE SCHOOL CURRICULUM
The Math 6 course stresses that students learn mathematics best by working on problems themselves. Therefore, the assigned homework is critical to success. The problem set is designed to review important skills and concepts, to reinforce learning, to automate foundational skills, to develop flexibility in working with several strands of mathematics, and to provide the distributed practice that improves long-term retention of concepts.
The Math 7 course focuses on introductory algebra topics. It is designed to facilitate the transition from concrete concepts of arithmetic to the abstract concepts of algebra. This math course is intended to allow students the opportunity to practice their new-found skills in such a way that will allow them to become comfortable with math. The distributed practice sets allow for long-term retention of concepts.
The Pre-algebra course is designed as an introduction to algebra concepts and practices. The focus in this class will be on algebraic functions, solving algebraic expressions, linear functions and more complex geometry. This class will lay the foundation for Algebra I and allow students to prepare for more difficult math classes. The course moves away from basic arithmetic and automatic mathematical solutions and into more problem based solutions.
The Algebra I course serves as a foundation for all future math courses. Basic concepts and properties of algebra are introduced early in the course to prepare students for equation solving. Throughout the course, concepts and skills are introduced algebraically, graphically, numerically, and verbally. The content encompasses all the basic skills needed for further mathematical success.
ENGLISH GRAMMAR AND COMPOSITION 6
The goal of this class is to develop life-long communicators of the English language through the expansion of grammar, usage, mechanics, and writing skills. The English class reinforces the skills needed to write successfully across the curriculum and to use writing as a tool for learning. The grammar and composition strand focuses on the functions and proper use of the English language in writing with an emphasis on mechanics and usage, as well as sentence and paragraph formation. Students utilize the writing process through a modified Writing Workshop format. Students complete a research paper following guidelines found in The Modern Language Association of America’s MLA Handbook. Additionally, a study of selected literary pieces enhances the focus on writing.
ENGLISH GRAMMAR AND COMPOSITION 7
As second year students in the middle school environment, seventh-grade students continue to expand their reading, writing, grammatical, and collaborative skills together. The goal for this course is to grow life-long communicators of the English language through application and expansion of daily grammar practices, usage, spelling and punctuation, writing skills, research skills, and vocabulary. Additionally, a study of selected literary pieces enhances the focus on writing.
ENGLISH GRAMMAR AND COMPOSITION 8
As a third year student in the middle school, eighth grade students will continue to expand their reading, writing, grammatical, and collaborative skills together. The goal for this course is to grow life-long communicators of the English language through practice and expansion of daily grammar practices, usage, spelling and punctuation, writing skills, research skills, and vocabulary. At this level in middle school, students will work more heavily on perfecting sentence structures, combining sentences in various ways, and paragraph construction through grammatical practices. Students will develop independence in the writing process. Additionally, a study of selected literary pieces enhances the focus on writing.
EARTH SCIENCE 6
The goal of this class is to instill a comprehensive understanding of Earth Science, to develop scientific thinking skills, and to broaden awareness of current scientific events. Students who successfully complete this course should demonstrate knowledge of the following criteria: the nature of science, chemistry, Earth and its materials, the Earth’s surface, the Earth’s internal processes, the history of Earth, human involvement in the Earth, the air and water of the Earth, and astronomy.
LIFE SCIENCE 7
The goal of this class is to instill a comprehensive understanding of Life Science, to develop scientific thinking skills, and to broaden awareness of current scientific events. Additionally, students will begin to develop a working knowledge of the nature of science and should be able to formulate scientific opinions in response to new scientific discoveries and technologies. Students who successfully complete this course should demonstrate knowledge of the following criteria: (1) the nature of science, (2) the properties and classification of life, (3) basic cell biology, (4) heredity, (5) natural selection and adaptation, (6) the diversity of life, (7) human anatomy and physiology, and (8) ecology.
PHYSICAL SCIENCE 8
Physical science is an introduction to the basic ideas of physics and chemistry. The first half of the year is devoted to physics; the second half, to chemistry. Laboratory work and “making” projects are frequent, so that the principles can be seen in action in as many ways as possible. Labs are usually analyzed by averaging or by graphing.
WORLD HISTORY AND ANCIENT CULTURES 6
World history is a year-long study of history, culture, and civilizations from the ancient to the modern world. Students learn about the geography, history, religious beliefs, and culture of the past while examining the social, economic, and political issues that defined these societies while helping to shape our modern world. Students continue to hone their research, writing, and historical analysis abilities.
WORLD GEOGRAPHY 7
World geography begins with fundamental map skills and basic geographical terminology. Through the prism of the five themes of geography, students will learn about the physical features of the earth and the relationship of people to the environment and each other. Students move on to study the geography of the United States, Canada, Western Europe, Eastern Europe, Latin America, South America, Africa, Asia, the Middle East, and Australia. Students continue to hone their research, writing and critical analysis abilities.
US/GEORGIA HISTORY 8
United States (US) and Georgia history is designed to cover America’s journey from Pre-Columbian times into the 20th century. Students will develop an in-depth knowledge of significant events, major happenings, and critical turning points in American and Georgian history. The class will explore the events that shaped our nation and the relationship between our country’s past and the present. Students will continue to hone their research, writing, and historical analysis abilities.
SPANISH 6, 7
The goal of this course is designed to teach beginning level Spanish. Students will learn basic level grammar structure, verb conjugation, and conversational skills through writing, reading, listening assignments, and speaking. Also, this course will aim to introduce Hispanic culture, history, and customs through cooking, dancing, and educational activities. Students will complete projects such as short stories, oral dictations, introduction of Latin American heroes.
The goal of Spanish I is designed to teach beginning upper school level Spanish stemming from middle school fundamentals. This course will aim at grammar structure, verb conjugation, and conversational skills through writing, reading, listening assignments, and speaking. Also, this course will aim to promote cultural acquisition through Hispanic culture, history, and customs through cooking, dancing, and educational activities. Students will complete basic typical meals in groups, will present via PowerPoint customs of various Latin American countries, and complete basic oral dictations.
FRENCH 6, 7
The goal of this class is to introduce students to the French language by studying vocabulary, French culture, and simple conversations. This class gives a brief overview of and foundation to French basics.
The goal of French I is designed to teach beginning upper school level French stemming from middle school fundamentals. The French language is introduced with an emphasis on all skills: listening, speaking, reading, and writing in an integrated way. Includes how to greet and take leave of someone, to ask and respond to basic questions, to speak and read within a range of carefully selected topics and to develop an understanding of French-speaking cultures.
The goal of the 6th grade computer class is to help students become proficient with computer keyboarding and Microsoft Office. Students will practice keyboarding daily to increase their speed and accuracy. Students will utilize Microsoft Office to produce presentations, spreadsheets, brochures, graphs, charts, etc. Students will become familiar with searching information on Galileo for the purpose of presenting a presentation and correctly citing their sources. Students will learn about Internet safety and how to evaluate a website.
COMPUTER 7, 8
The goal of this computer class is to help students become familiar with the fundamentals of the computer, proper keyboarding, and the Microsoft Office software. Students will utilize this software to produce presentations, spreadsheets, brochures, graphs, charts, etc. Students will become familiar with searching information on Galileo for the purpose of a presentation and correctly citing their sources.
PHYSICAL EDUCATION AND HEALTH
HEALTH 6, 7, 8
The goal of this class is to develop healthy lifetime habits. Middle School Health class focus is to motivate and assist students in their discovery of practical applications, to link knowledge and practice to other disciplines and to “real life,” and to encourage further investigation into healthful lifestyles. The curriculum is designed to incorporate the six priority adolescent risk behaviors which are identified by the U. S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The risk behaviors are: Alcohol and other drug use, Injury and Violence, Tobacco, Poor Nutrition, Inadequate Physical Activity, and Risky Sexual Behavior and Diseases.
PHYSICAL EDUCATION 6, 7, 8
The goal of middle school physical education is committed to helping children learn and improve motor skills and develop a commitment to life time physical fitness. It is an instructional program that gives attention to all learning domains: psychomotor, cognitive, and affective. Students will learn to work together as a team as well as learn to compete with self and others through a variety of sports and activities. Physical fitness is a key component of the National Association for Sports and Physical Education and emphasis will be placed on this. Our program content will be based upon The National Content Standards for Dynamic Physical Education. Middle school students will participate in a variety of activities presented in one, two, or three week units. Students will learn rules and the history in both popular sports and non-traditional games.
FINE ARTS 6
Students engaging in the creative process; find, identify, formulate, solve problems, and pursue open-ended inquiry through production of artworks. Aesthetics develop through examination of own artwork and that of others. Effort is made to understand meaning in the study of art through exploration of the personal relationship of artists to community, culture, and world. Creation of art is prompted by art history study. Students will explore new art techniques and media to create two and three dimensional works. Emphasis is placed on creating illusions of space in two dimensional works using perspective and value. Positive /negative space, texture, form, proportion, and unity are utilized in creating three dimensional works. Sketchbook use for planning work is encouraged.
FINE ARTS 7
Students engaging in the creative process: find, identify, formulate, solve problems, and pursue open-ended inquiry through production of artworks. Aesthetics develop through examination of own artwork and that of others. Effort is made to understand meaning in the study of art through exploration of the personal relationship of artists to community, culture, and world. Creation of art is prompted by art history study. Students will create artworks by applying a variety of media, techniques, and processes to formulate and express ideas and concepts. The media will include acrylic and watercolor painting, printmaking, colored pencil, oil pastel, fiber arts, and sculpture. Sketchbook use is encouraged to plan work and to keep record of ideas and thoughts.
FINE ARTS 8
Students engage in the creative process to generate and visualize ideas. Students will experiment with art methods and materials to gain a further understanding of the relationship of process, material, and technique to communicate ideas. Techniques explored are drawing, painting, sculpture, fiber arts, and printmaking. Media will include acrylic and watercolor paint, oil pastel, India ink, chalk pastel, colored pencil, and fibers. Aesthetics develop through examination of own artwork and that of others. Effort is made to understand meaning in the study of art through exploration of the personal relationship of artists to community, culture, and world. Creation of art is prompted by art history study. Sketchbook use for planning work is encouraged.
During the sixth grade year students study major people of the Bible. Presentations and class discussions emphasize the historical and literary context, as well as moral implications of the stories.
During the seventh grade year, the students explore Bible stories about Jesus Christ’s life with an emphasis on both literary and historical features as well as moral implications. During each unit a different story or stories from the Bible are presented and discussed.
During the eighth grade year, students explore various moral teachings found throughout the Bible with a particular focus on the Ten Commandments. They discuss the historical context of the related passages, as well as implications the teachings may have on modern times.
Theatre arts students in the sixth grade explore acting and improvisation. They learn the basic techniques of acting, character, and voice development as well as presentation skills and scriptwriting.
Theatre arts students in the seventh grade incorporate sensory and emotional experiences and observation techniques into presentational theatre activities. They apply vocal and movement techniques appropriate to theatre activities and presentations. The students learn beginning technical theatre skills, such as lighting and staging. Students begin performing in local school productions and participate in drama club activities and workshops to enhance drama skills.
Choral Music provides opportunities to develop performance skills and knowledge in ensemble singing. Limited to 16 to 20 performers and may include any style period. The course covers performance and production, analysis and theoretical studies, historical and cultural influences, creative aspects of music and appreciation of music. Stresses balance of individual progress and group success.
MUSIC APPRECIATION 6
Students develop an appreciation for music through the introduction of various aspects, including singing, performing on classroom instruments such as recorder and fretted instruments, reading and notating music, composing, arranging, improvising, listening and evaluating music and music performances. Students explore the relationship of music to disciplines outside the arts, as well as to history and culture.
MUSIC APPRECIATION 7
Students continue to develop an appreciation for music by singing, performing on guitars and/or keyboards, reading and notating music, composing, arranging, improvising, listening and evaluating music and music performances. Students explore similarities and differences of different categories of music (historical, ethnic, popular, and folk).
MUSIC APPRECIATION 8
Students continue developing their listening, performance, and creative skills. Through collaboration, they work to create both individual and group compositions using a variety of sound sources. Students improve their writing skills by researching major composers, musicians and performers and by making multimedia presentations which highlight community musical organizations and various careers in music.