We know that adolescence is a challenging time for our students, so our Middle School focuses on the integration of intellectual and social skills. TheMiddle School curriculum builds on the basics learned in Lower School, allowing students to explore the higher-level thinking that results from the mastery of those skills. At the same time, the Middle School’s learning focus serves as preparation for the Upper School by promoting responsibility, respect, and self-reliance. Academically advanced students have the opportunity to be placed above their grade level in math and foreign language when such placement is indicated.
The Middle School day includes seven forty-five-minute classes and a thirty-five-minute lunch period. A daily thirty-minute activity period allows for special programs, clubs, and Advisory Group meetings. Physical education classes meet every day; sixth graders participate in a few non-contact sports, while full team involvement begins for students in the seventh grade.
Our Middle School students learn to discover the world, and as they do, to know themselves. In addition to core courses, Middle School students are encouraged to explore a wide variety of topics such as foreign language, music, drama, art, and engineering. Recognizing the emergence of individual interests, we encourage students to participate in various elective courses through a rotating course schedule.
A commitment to community service and an awareness of environmental concerns are promoted through various clubs and activities. Students coordinate a recycling program, organize food drives, collect contributions for the Salvation Army and other agencies, and participate in environmental field trips. These activities offer students opportunities to participate and to lead.
In Middle School Advisory Groups, teachers work with small groups of students to address issues important to adolescents. Concerns such as substance and alcohol abuse, human sexuality, death, peer pressure, and test anxiety are discussed during Advisory, giving students the opportunity to ask questions about the tough issues facing today’s youth. The Middle School counselor also plays an important role by facilitating advisory sessions and communicating with students, parents, and teachers on key issues.
The weekly Intramural Program, which is very popular with students, provides a healthy climate for developing team spirit and participation among Advisory Groups without an emphasis on ability.