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Middle School

Learn more about our Middle School program by clicking on the grade level and then subject. Middle School students also participate in all of our special area classes. Information about those classes can be found on the Specials page.

FIFTH

Fifth Science


In fifth grade science, students focus on the fundamentals of science and how to think like a scientist. We start off with the question “what is science?” and then dive into tools scientists use and the scientific method. We use what we learn from these to study chemistry, the periodic table, and living things.




Fifth Mathematics


The Fifth Grade math curriculum this year is filled with challenging concepts and problem solving strategies. We will be:

  • reiterating number sense all year
  • multiplying and dividing numbers
  • learning order of operations
  • converting measurements involving decimals and fractions
  • finding volume and areas of triangles
  • adding, subtracting, multiplying, and dividing fractions and decimals
  • identifying angles and constructing with math tools such as a protractor
  • calculating average, rate, and speed
  • interpreting a given ratio
  • discussing the concept of percentage
  • utilizing note-taking and study strategies
  • learning higher level math vocabulary




Fifth Language Arts


Fifth grade language arts consists of four major components: literature study, writing, vocabulary, and grammar. Literature study focuses on reading works by diverse authors and works about diverse characters. Lessons concentrate on story comprehension, story elements, character analysis, plot analysis, and developing critical thinking skills. Students read class novels together and are expected to read a minimum of four books on their own, two books per semester. In writing, students explore the six traits of good writing: word choice, voice, sentence fluency, organization, ideas, and conventions. Students use these traits to write stories, essays, poetry, and book reviews. Using the book Vocabulary from Classical Roots, students expand their vocabulary by learning how to analyze the meanings of words by exploring Greek and Latin roots. Grammar instruction is taught using the textbook Grammar Workshop and is supplemented with lessons that teach grammar through writing. The ultimate goal of the fifth grade language arts program is to teach students to develop a passion for reading and writing.




Fifth Social Studies


In Social Studies, Fifth Graders learn about some of the civilizations of the ancient world including Ancient Greece, Egypt, China, and Mesopotamia. We will start with some important foundational ideas such as:

  • What is civilization and what are its characteristics?

  • How is it different from a society or culture?

  • How do people in the present day learn about the ancient world?

Fifth Grade Social Studies will build on skills that they learned in Elementary School and will introduce new ideas and concepts related to the study of history, geography, and culture. They will participate in a variety of learning activities designed to create high interest and enthusiasm in the subject. Such activities include creative projects; research; simulations and reenactments; cooperative learning; creating and analyzing maps; examining and interpreting documents; and comparing and contrasting people, places, and ideas.





SIXTH

Sixth Science


In sixth grade science, students take a closer look at the engineering and design process. They compare it to the scientific method and then use it to develop solutions for facing a water crisis, an oil spill, earthquake proof structures, and renewable energy. Along the way, students study the chemistry of water, inside the earth, and natural resources.




Sixth Language Arts


Coming soon!




Sixth Mathematics


The Sixth Grade math curriculum contains content built upon by the previous year and includes challenging new concepts. We will be:

  • using a letter to represent an unknown number and write a simple algebraic expression in one variable for a given situation
  • simplifying and evaluating algebraic expressions by substitutions
  • calculating ratios, proportions, and percents
  • interpreting and calculating rate, average, and speed
  • finding unknown angles in geometric figures
  • reading, interpreting, and creating pie charts
  • using formulas to find the radius and circumference of a circle
  • utilizing note-taking and study strategies
  • learning higher level math vocabulary such as coefficient, terms, and constant




Sixth Social Studies


In Social Studies, Sixth Graders will learn about the early history of the United States from the arrival of the earliest people during the Ice Age and covering the earliest civilizations to the arrival of Europeans and Africans, the establishment of colonies, the introduction of slavery, the Revolution and its aftermath, the Constitution and early republic, the westward migration, conflicts with Native Americans, anti-slavery movements, the sectional crisis, and the Civil War and its aftermath.

Sixth Grade Social Studies will build on skills that students learned in Elementary School and Ffth Grade and will introduce new ideas and concepts related to the study of history, geography, and culture. They will participate in a variety of learning activities designed to create high interest and enthusiasm in the subject. Such activities include creative projects; research; simulations and reenactments; cooperative learning; creating and analyzing maps; examining and interpreting documents; and comparing and contrasting people, places, and ideas.





SEVENTH

Seventh Science


Topics:

  1. Geologic History and Earth Processes
  2. Conditions on Earth
  3. Astronomy
  4. The Biosphere
  5. Humans and Environmental Science
  6. Chesapeake Bay
Highlights: AquaEcosystem Project: We have an fully self sustained aquaecosystem on campus. In the fall, students work with our partners at the National Aquarium to plant bay grasses and raise baby rockfish in the system. In the spring, when our grasses have grown and fish have matured, we work with a local nonprofit to find a site to plant our grasses and release our fish. Student are given duties throughout the year to assess growth and water quality to ensure our system remains successful




Seventh Language Arts


Students begin the year exploring the following questions: What is a story? Why do we tell stories? How do we know whose story is being told? The students read short stories from a diverse array of authors as they explore these questions, and they end the short story unit by creating their own character rich stories, involving the theme of lies. They continue to look at the question of whose story is being told in a cross-curricular unit about immigration. After learning about immigration through Ellis Island in both social studies and language arts, the students create their own historical fiction immigration stories set in the height of Ellis Island immigration to show off their learning. The students also look at modern immigration by reading the true story, Enrique's Journey: Adapted for Young People. Students write essays about the ethics of journalism, "the danger of a single story", and their own core beliefs. The students also write food reviews to strengthen their paragraph writing skills and their descriptive language. Students use a color coding method to help them organize their paragraphs and their outlines. All writing is taken through a process of brainstorming, outlining, drafting, and revising. In addition to strengthening their vocabulary through reading, students also learn how to analyze the meanings of words by exploring Greek and Latin roots, using the book Vocabulary from Classical Roots. Students learn about grammar rules through both writer's workshop and lessons in Grammar for Writing.




Seventh Mathematics


7th Grade Pre-Algebra

  • Algebraic Intergers and Expressions
  • One step equations and inequalities
  • Decimals and Equations
  • Factors, Fractions, and Exponets
  • Ratios, Proportions, and Percents
  • Linear Functions and Graphing
  • Right Triangles and Geometric Rules
  • Data Analysis and Probability
  • Non-Linear Functins and Polynomials




Seventh Social Studies


We take a look at American History from Reconstruction up to World War Two. Students will examine how the political, social and economic tensions from the Civil war impact Westward expansion, immigration and the industrial revolution. Students also discuss how these conditions help to create a more modern and recognizable United States. Each unit focuses on a few central figures which have significant impacts on the era. Immigration is a cross curricular unit with ELA where students read a novel about Italian immigration and study how Ellis and Angel island were important historically to the developing country in history class. Students will visit immigration related museums to hear firt hand about local and national immigration stories.





EIGHTH

Eighth Science


Topics:

  1. Matter and Energy
  2. Chemical Interactions
  3. Organic Molecules and Properties of Water
  4. Human Health and Biology
  5. Characteristics of Life and Cells
  6. Genetics and Evolution
Highlights Bacteria Colonies: In this project, students study the 8 shared characteristics of living things and mechanisms of cellular reproduction by swabbing and cultivating bacteria from campus surfaces. Students also learn how disinfectants work and learn how to make a natural, homemade disinfectant. We use our bacteria colony skills to compare the effectiveness of standard and homemade cleaners Blue Gill Sunfish: Throughout the year students enhance and apply their understanding of chemistry, biological requirements, and evolurtion with our blue gill sunfish. Students measure and modify water qualities and collect daily data on the tank habitat. At the end of year, students release the fish into a local tributary.




Eighth Language Arts


In the literature that students read, they look at examples of injustice and how to be upstanders. This includes reading George Takei's graphic novel memoir for middle grade readers about his time spent in a Japanese American internment camp as a child. This exploration of what it means to be an upstander is central in student analysis and discussion of To Kill a Mockingbird, which is taught from the Facing History and Ourselves approach. Students also continue to analyze their own identities as they seek to understand the identities of the characters in the stories they read. Students look at how our legal system can be an avenue for justice as they perform a mock trial based on literature. The purpose of the mock trial is also to encourage students to analyze a text closely while developing better public speaking skills. The students have further opportunities for public speaking in the various performance roles they take on in our theater unit, in which they read a play, such as Romeo and Juliet or Twelve Angry Men. The students culminate the theater unit by writing a play for the Young Playwrights Festival competition at Center Stage. Students also continue to develop their essay writing skills, taking their writing through the process of outlining, drafting, and revising. Both through their own writing and from lessons in Grammar for Writing, students continue to develop an understanding of grammar and usage rules. Their vocabulary enrichment is supported both through reading and analysis of Greek and Latin roots in the book Vocabulary from Classical Roots.




Eighth Mathematics


8th Grade Algebra

  • Variables, Function Patterns and Graphs
  • Rational Numbers
  • Solving Inequalities
  • Linear Equations, Systems of Linear Equations and Systems of Inequalities
  • Exponents and Exponential Functions
  • Polynomials and Factoring
  • Quadratic Equations and Functions
  • Radical Expressions and Equations
  • Rational Expressions and Functions




Eighth Social Studies


Students examine the world and its physical and human features. We begin by developing a geographic vocabulary by studying the United States using the National Geographic society’s five themes of Geography. Countries and Regions from different continents are spotlighted as examples of similar and different physical and cultural aspects. Globalization and its impacts are also discussed at length to demonstrate the different types of interconnection in the modern world. Students demonstrate mastery of their geographic vocabulary by creating their own country given selected criteria including governments, religion, economy, communication and international relationships.





Middle School Team

Allison Fistere

Seventh & Eighth Language Arts

Sean Lowman

Fifth & Sixth Social Studies; Sixth Language Arts

Diane McGrady

Fifth & Sixth Math

Terrance Pounds

Seventh & Eighth Math

Kandy Quint

Librarian; Fifth Language Arts

Elizabeth Reimer

Seventh & Eighth Science

Michael Wahl

Seventh & Eighth Social Studies

Kristin Werner

Director of Student Life; Fifth & Sixth Science

4B Wallace Manor Road

Edgewater, MD 21037

410.266.0952

office@standrewsum.org