Middle School Curriculum

Algebra I uses problem situations, physical models, and appropriate technology to extend algebraic thinking and engage student reasoning. Problem-solving situations will provide all students an environment that promotes communication and fosters connections within mathematics to other disciplines, and to the real world. Students will use physical models to represent, explore, and develop abstract concepts. The use of appropriate technology will help students apply mathematics in an increasingly technological world. The concepts emphasized in the course include functions, solving equations, slope as rates of change, and proportionality.

This Pre-Algebra course will emphasize understanding of the basic concepts in Pre-Algebra and the application of these concepts to real world situations. This includes working with concepts related to algebraic expressions, integers, equations, decimals, inequalities, factors, fractions, exponents, ratios, proportions, and percents. Students will learn to recognize and use vocabulary to communicate their ideas. Emphasis will be placed on using the textbook and other support materials in an efficient way to reference information. Study skills such as note-taking, test-taking strategies, and organization will be developed to aid each student.

This year’s study in Science will be focused around specific themes: scientific method, energy, motion, friction, Newton’s laws, ecosystems, heredity, genetics, and evolution.  

MS Science through the Arts of Living and Learning

Art of Engagement: Learners engage with an activity that captures their attention, stimulates their thinking, and helps them access prior knowledge. Engagement activities will reveal existing misconceptions to the teacher and leave the learner wanting to know more about how the problem or issue relates to their own world.

Art of Inquiry: Learners explore common, hands-on experiences that help them begin constructing concepts and developing skills related to the learning target. The learner will gather, organize, interpret, analyze, and evaluate data. Learners elaborate and solidify their understanding of the concept and/or apply it to a real-world situation resulting in a deeper understanding. Teachers facilitate activities that help the learner correct remaining misconceptions and generalize concepts in a broader context.

Art of Communication: Learners communicate through analysis of their exploration so that their understanding is clarified and modified with reflective activities. Learners use science terminology to connect their explanations to the experiences they had in the engage-and-explore phases.

The goal of the Middle School Humanities class from a historical perspective is to explore the beginnings of U.S. History, from the Revolution through the Civil War, looking in depth at several key moments along the way. We will be analyzing historical documents, reading texts, and looking at rich documentary footage. From the Language Arts perspective, we will learn to be effective writers in many forms, from poetry to research reports, and be able to communicate our ideas to our peers through discussion, presentation, and digital media. We will also be tackling the novel Lord of the Flies, and Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet, along with many short stories, poems, and nonfiction texts. The Humanities, especially in the middle grades when young people are struggling with all the challenges that adolescence presents, are absolutely critical for developing and strengthening their voices. This course will challenge the students to do just that, to find their voices and confidently express themselves.

Oak Grove approaches all learning as an art form through The Art of Living & Learning. One of these arts – The Art of Aesthetics – particularly speaks to developing within each student sensitivity to and appreciation of beauty in all its manifestations. All students, regardless of their self-perception, are encouraged and supported to find the artist within by participating in a rich array of extracurricular opportunities available in fine arts, music, and drama.

Oak Grove’s Outdoor Education and Travel Program at the Middle School level offers opportunities to learn from nature, build lasting friendships, feel comfortable and secure in the outdoors, and become active stewards of the environment. Students learn the skills of increasing independence, cooperation, and teamwork, and the ability to spend time in nature without the stimulus of electronics. Students participate in two trips per year, one in the fall and one in the spring.

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