In mathematics, students will primarily be focusing on the abstract of various skills and strategies on three main domains. The first is numerical expressions and equations, students will be extending repetition of rational numbers. They will also have an introduction to algebraic thinking with using fractions, multiples, and operations. The second is Ratios and Proportional Relationships, students will use rates and ratios for reasoning, and computing with decimals and percent. Lastly, Statistics, Probability, and Geometry is the last domain in mathematics students will be learning and practicing new skills in. Students will focus on univariate data and the measuring and classifying of two and three dimensional shapes.
English Language Arts
Our English Language Arts curriculum concentrates on comprehension skills and strategies. In reading literature and informational text we focus on explicitly citing evidence from text to analyze and draw inferences and determining a theme from a central idea of a text. There is also a focus on class discussions and summarizing without personal opinions or judgments. Writing essays will focus on the skills of analyzing topics, concepts, and conveying information through the selection, organization, and analysis of relevant content. Students will complete various authentic reading and writing projects throughout the year based off of different genre novel studies.
The sixth grade social studies curriculum is a geography-based course which introduces students to the physical and human geography of the world. Beginning with a spatial perspective, students explore different ways in which the earth has been represented, how geographers use specific tools and technologies in geographic inquiry, and some of the limitations of these tools. They investigate patterns of natural and human characteristics and use case studies to examine how the physical environment has provided both benefits and obstacles to human societies. Students also consider globalization and its impact on economic and political institutions and people worldwide.
Students will also examine a variety of global issues that emanate from human activities such as population change, migration, urbanization, culture and cultural diffusion, resource use, increased networks of trade and economic interdependence, and the interactions among nations. Students investigate how local, national, and international governmental and non-governmental organizations respond to a variety of contemporary issues.
Lastly, students employ different spatial scales (local, regional, interregional, and global), to study human patterns and global issues throughout the course. In doing so, students deepen their understanding of the disciplines of history, geography, economics and political science, as well as broaden their understanding to other fields within the social studies such as anthropology, sociology, and archeology. Grounded in research on students thinking and learning in geography and other social science disciplines, the curriculum emphasizes how evidence from a myriad of social studies fields collectively provides a broad and detailed picture of our world.
In Grade 7, instructional time will focus on four critical areas: (1) developing understanding of and applying proportional relationships; (2) developing understanding of operations with rational numbers and working with expressions and linear equations; (3) 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 (4) drawing inferences about populations based on samples.
English Language Arts
The instructional units provide seventh grade students with a critical foundation in reading and writing narrative, informational, and argument texts. Through analysis and production of texts in these three modes, students become more adept readers, thinkers, and writers. Across the year, they come to understand the distinctions between narrative, informational and argument texts by studying fiction and nonfiction in a variety of formats and developing a more thorough understanding of audience and purpose when both reading and writing. The use of a reader or writers notebook for each unit encourages students to be independent, engaged, and empowered learners who value close reading, idea generation, drafting, and revision. The first two units facilitate the use of the notebook for close reading and generative writing of narrative in addition to developing the classroom writing community. The focus on understanding and using the elements of argument underpins three of the units (Argument Paragraph, Literary Essay, and Writing the Argument), supporting students in becoming more competent producers of argument in both written and spoken form. The informational reading and informational essay units steep students in how to critically read nonfiction, as well as analyze and use text structures, central ideas, and supporting details to craft an informational text.
The seventh grade social studies curriculum focuses on early world history and geography with a deliberate focus on the content literacy. Students begin their exploration into world history with a focus on historical thinking. By unpacking historical and geographic thinking, students learn how these disciplines are distinct in how they ask questions and frame problems to organize and drive inquiry. Students learn that historians must have some evidence to support the claims they make in their accounts. They investigate how these social scientists select, analyze, and organize evidence, and then use that evidence to create accounts that answer questions or problems. By introducing students to the invisible tools that historians use to create historical accounts — significance, social institutions, temporal frames (time), and spatial scales (space) â€“ the course deepens students historical habits of mind and builds students social and content literacy.
In this grade, students investigate human history from the beginning until around 1500. They explore major and significant changes in each era through a chronological organization. Students learn about the earliest humans and explore early migration and settlement patterns. In studying the origins of farming and its impact upon emerging human cultures, students analyze evidence from the fields of archaeology and anthropology, and employ a wide range of data sources including artifacts, photographs, and geographic information. Students examine how the emergence of pastoral and agrarian societies set the stage for the development of powerful empires, trade networks, and the diffusion of people, resources, and ideas.
Extending students study of world history through Era 4 (300 CE â€“ 1500 CE) places world religions and development of empires in the Americas (Aztecs, Incas, Mayans) in their historical context. The rise and fall of empires, as well as the nomadic groups in Afro-Eurasia, generated new zones of cultural and commercial exchange that linked regions across the world and enabled ideas to spread. Students also examine the development of belief systems in their historical context. These new belief systems had distinctive beliefs, texts, and rituals. Each shaped cultures by developing ethical practices and establishing codes within which diverse people were able to communicate and interact, often well beyond their local neighborhood. In doing so, students consider why some belief systems grew into world religions. In studying the precursors to the meeting of the Three Worlds, students expand their view of human history and begin to see the story of the United States in a more global context. The course concludes with students analyzing global patterns of continuity and change over time, and using evidence to construct historical arguments about the past.
In Grade 8, instructional time should focus on three critical areas: (1) formulating and reasoning about expressions and equations, including modeling an association in bivariate data with a linear equation, and solving linear equations and systems of linear equations; (2) grasping the concept of a function and using functions to describe quantitative relationships; (3) analyzing two- and three-dimensional space and figures using distance, angle, similarity, and congruence, and understanding and applying the Pythagorean Theorem.
English Language Arts
The instructional units provide eighth grade students with a critical foundation in reading and writing narrative, informational, and argument texts. Through analysis and production of texts in these three modes, students become more adept readers, thinkers, and writers. Across the year, they come to understand the distinctions between narrative, informational and argument texts by studying fiction and nonfiction in a variety of formats and developing a more thorough understanding of audience and purpose when both reading and writing. The use of a reader or writers notebook for each unit encourages students to be independent, engaged, and empowered learners who value close reading, idea generation, drafting, and revision. The first two units facilitate the use of the notebook for close reading and generative writing of narrative in addition to developing the classroom writing community. The focus on understanding and using the elements of argument underpins three of the units (Argument Paragraph, Literary Essay, and Writing the Argument), supporting students in becoming more competent producers of argument in both written and spoken form. The informational reading and informational essay units steep students in how to critically read nonfiction, as well as analyze and use text structures, central ideas, and supporting details to craft an informational text.
This course introduces students to American history from the Revolution through the Reconstruction Era, with an emphasis on the values and ideals of our constitutional republic. Using the text of the Preamble to the U.S. Constitution as the touchstone for the course, students assess how the meaning of the phrases We the People and “to form a more perfect Union” are reflected in past decisions and events and have inspired generations of Americans.
Beginning with the political and intellectual transformations that preceded the American Revolution, students explore how the ideas of inalienable rights, limited government, social compact, rule of law, equality and the right of revolution stimulated English colonists to declare independence. Students further their understanding of American government from an in-depth study of the United States Constitution and the evolution of the government created during its first century. They examine the challenges faced by the new nation and the role of political and social leaders in meeting these challenges. Students also analyze the nature and effect of territorial, demographic, and economic growth during the 19th century. Using economic, social/cultural, and geographic/environmental events, trends and issues, students also assess the nature and effect of territorial, demographic, and economic growth through 1877. They analyze and evaluate early attempts to abolish or contain slavery and to realize the ideals of the Declaration of Independence for all. In studying the Civil War and Reconstruction, students evaluate multiple causes, key events, and complex consequences of the war and its aftermath.
While a chronological frame structures the course, there are many opportunities for students to consider how contemporary public issues. Disagreements on public issues emanate from the inherent tensions among the values found in our nations founding documents such as liberty, common good, security, diversity, equality, etc. This course will highlight how the nation addressed these tensions within their historical context.
Significant attention is paid to developing students content literacy skills including reading informational text, writing, and speaking. Using primary and secondary sources, the course also develops students disciplinary literacy in history. Students become investigators of the past as they engage in the analytical skills of sourcing, contextualizing, and corroborating evidence, thereby restoring agency to students in the learning process. Students deepen their understanding of the evidentiary nature of history as they use historical evidence to both support and analyze historical arguments and narratives. In an effort to cultivate students analytical reasoning skills, students use multiple texts to explore ideas of significance, continuity and change over time, and the importance of perspective in understanding the past.
Middle School Science 6-8
Students in middle school continue to develop understanding of four core ideas in the physical sciences. The middle school performance expectations in the Physical Sciences build on the K â€“ 5 ideas and capabilities to allow learners to explain phenomena central to the physical sciences but also to the life sciences and earth and space science. The performance expectations in physical science blend the core ideas with scientific and engineering practices and crosscutting concepts to support students in developing useable knowledge to explain real world phenomena in the physical, biological, and earth and space sciences. In the physical sciences, performance expectations at the middle school level focus on students developing understanding of several scientific practices. These include developing and using models, planning and conducting investigations, analyzing and interpreting data, using mathematical and computational thinking, and constructing explanations; and to use these practices to demonstrate understanding of the core ideas. Students are also expected to demonstrate understanding of several of engineering practices including design and evaluation.
Students in middle school develop understanding of key concepts to help them make sense of life science. The ideas build upon students science understanding from earlier grades and from the disciplinary core ideas, science and engineering practices, and crosscutting concepts of other experiences with physical and earth sciences. There are four life science disciplinary core ideas in middle school: 1) From Molecules to Organisms: Structures and Processes, 2) Ecosystems: Interactions, Energy, and Dynamics, 3) Heredity: Inheritance and Variation of Traits, 4) Biological Evolution: Unity and Diversity. The performance expectations in middle school blend the core ideas with scientific and engineering practices and crosscutting concepts to support students in developing useable knowledge across the science disciplines. While the performance expectations in middle school life science couple particular practices with specific disciplinary core ideas, instructional decisions should include use of many science and engineering practices integrated in the performance expectations.
Students in middle school continue to develop their understanding of the three disciplinary core ideas in the Earth and Space Sciences. The middle school performance expectations in Earth Space Science build on the elementary school ideas and skills and allow middle school students to explain more in-depth phenomena central not only to the earth and space sciences, but to life and physical sciences as well. These performance expectations blend the core ideas with scientific and engineering practices and crosscutting concepts to support students in developing useable knowledge to explain ideas across the science disciplines. While the performance expectations shown in middle school earth and space science couple particular practices with specific disciplinary core ideas, instructional decisions should include use of many practices that lead to the performance expectations.