Class Descriptions

MIDDLE LEVEL

COURSE DESCRIPTIONS



6th

7th

8th

Language Arts

Language Arts

Language Arts

Math

Math

Math

Science

Science

Science

Social Studies

Social Studies

Social Studies

Middle School 101

Digital Studies & PE

Digital Studies & PE

Digital Studies & PE

Elective

Elective

Art & Music OR

Band Or

Orchestra

Elective

Elective


COURSE OFFERINGS

LANGUAGE ARTS - Language arts is aligned with the Kansas College and Career Readiness Standards. Reading, writing, speaking, listening, and collaborative strategies are used purposefully to build knowledge and skills and to help students become independent readers, writers, and thinkers as they continue to progressively build the skills necessary for academic success and transition to the high school. The primary goals of the course are to foster independent learning, encourage in-depth exploration of the content, and develop academic habits of mind.


ADVANCED LANGUAGE ARTS - Advanced language arts is aligned with the Kansas College and Career Readiness Standards. Reading, writing, speaking, listening, and collaborative strategies are used purposefully to build knowledge and skills at a higher level and with more rigor than the regular language arts class. Through the application, analysis, evaluation, and creation of complex ideas that are often abstract and multi-faceted, students are challenged to think and collaborate critically on the content they are learning.

Recommended Lexile is 1150+ for incoming 7th graders and 1250+ for incoming 8th graders. Summer reading is required for incoming seventh and eighth graders.


READ 180 -  A full year reading course designed to meet the needs of students whose reading achievement is below the proficiency level. The course addresses individual needs through direct teacher instruction, high-interest reading material, and adaptive instructional software. READ 180 classes have no more than 15 students in each in order to promote a small group atmosphere and provide more one on one opportunities. (by permission only)


TAKE FLIGHT - A comprehensive Tier III intervention program that addresses the key components of effective reading: Phonemic Awareness, Phonics, Fluency, Vocabulary, and Reading Comprehension. (by permission only)


Math 6 The goal of this course is to guide students in understanding & making sense of mathematics.This course is based off the Kansas College and Career Standards. The course will make connections to the Standards of Mathematical Practices and the math standards for 6th Grade.

The five areas of study are Ratio and Proportions, Number Sense, Expressions and Equations, Geometry, and Statistics and Probability.  


Math 6/7 The goal of this course is to guide students in understanding & making sense of mathematics.This course is based off the Kansas College and Career Standards. The course will make connections to the Standards of Mathematical Practices and the math standards for 6th Grade and particular concepts of the 7th Grade Standards.

The five areas of study are Ratio and Proportions, Number Sense, Expressions and Equations, Geometry, and Statistics and Probability. (by permission only)


MATH 7 This course builds upon the skills and concepts learned in Math 6. The Big Ideas include developing an understanding of and applying proportionality (including similarity); developing an understanding of and using formulas to determine surface area and volume of three dimensional shapes; and developing an understanding of operations on all rational numbers and solving linear equations.


PRE-ALGEBRA 7 This course builds upon the skills and concepts learned in Math 7. The Big Ideas include analyzing and representing linear functions and solving linear equations and systems of linear equations; analyzing two- and three-dimensional figures by using distance and angle; and analyzing and summarizing data sets. (by permission only)


ALGEBRA The purpose of this course is to develop the algebraic concepts and processes that can be used to solve a variety of real-world problems. Topics include the real number system, equations and inequalities, linear and quadratic functions, systems of equations and inequalities, exponents and polynomials, radical expressions, quadratic functions and equations, radical equations, and rational expressions and functions. (by permission only)


MATH 8 This course builds upon the skills and concepts learned in Math 7. The Big Ideas include analyzing and representing linear functions and solving linear equations and systems of linear equations; analyzing two- and three-dimensional figures by using distance and angle; and analyzing and summarizing data sets.


ALGEBRA The purpose of this course is to develop the algebraic concepts and processes that can be used to solve a variety of real-world problems. Topics include the real number system, equations and inequalities, linear and quadratic functions, systems of equations and inequalities, exponents and polynomials, radical expressions, quadratic functions and equations, radical equations, and rational expressions and functions. (by permission only)


GEOMETRY- The purpose of this course is to develop the students’ inductive and deductive reasoning skills and to apply these skills in the advanced study of geometric relationships. Course Emphasis: Geometric proofs, definitions; parallel lines, congruent, similar triangles, quadrilaterals, polygons, circles, coordinate geometry, area, volumes, constructions, geometry-algebra relations and analytic geometry and transformations. (by permission only)


MATH STRATEGIES: An intervention math class aimed at assisting students who have been identified through a collection of data as having deficits in math. Math Strategies uses a cooperative learning, hands-on approach to improve students’ fact fluency and individual math deficits. (by permission only)


MS101: MS101 is designed as a course to support and instruct students as they make the transition from elementary to middle school. Skills to be developed in this class include well-developed study and organizational skills, selecting and monitoring appropriate goals, exhibiting good time management skills, feeling a strong connection to their school and community, learning and practicing in character education, participate in college and career planning, utilize research skills, and enhance literacy skills.


SOCIAL STUDIES 6  Sixth Grade social studies takes our students on a journey through the ancient worlds of; Earliest Humans, Mesopotamia, Hebrew Kingdoms, Egypt/Kush, India, China, Greece, Rome, and American Civilizations.  In each unit we will cover the background, landforms, culture, vocabulary, governments and traditions for these locations.  


SOCIAL STUDIES 7

Geography (1st Semester): The Geography course in the seventh grade should familiarize students with their world using the Essential Elements and Geography Themes.  Students should develop skills and knowledge about location, place, human/environmental interaction, movement, and regions.  The course should compare and contrast these themes across all continents.  Special attention should be given to the most essential skills and knowledge of the discipline.  Instruction should feature examples from a variety of geographic regions.  The course should be rigorous and relevant with instruction that integrates thinking skills, historical processes, and content so that students are able to apply their learning to their own lives. Students are able to apply their geographic knowledge to their community, state, nation, world, and themselves.  Instruction should also include the integration of concepts and principles from economics, civics, history, and humanities.  


Kansas History (2nd Semester): The Kansas History course begins with a study of archaic native inhabitants of the land that was to become Kansas.  The course will cover major events, individuals, groups, innovations, and movements from pre-historic days to the present.  The course should seek to build a connection or relationship between the student and the state.  The course should be rigorous and relevant with instruction that integrates thinking skills, historical processes, and content so that students are able to apply their learning to their own lives.

SOCIAL STUDIES 8

The eighth grade course of study begins with a review of the major ideas, issues, and events of the founding of the nation and Constitutional Period. Students will then concentrate on the critical events, people, groups, ideas, and issues of the period from 1800 to 1900 - including Westward expansion, sectionalism, the Civil War, Reconstruction, Populism, and Imperialism. The course will be rigorous and relevant with instruction that integrates thinking skills, historical processes, and content so students are able to apply the learning to their own lives. Instruction will also include the integration of concepts and principles from economics, geography, civics, and the humanities.


SCIENCE 6

6th grade science will consist of exploring Physical Science and Ecology.  During the exploration of Physics students will focus on energy, force and Newton’s Laws.  Exploring Ecology will continue our study on energy originating from the sun and then transferring to all living things.  During this study Biomes will be studied as well as managing Earth’s resources.


SCIENCE 7

7th grade science will consist of an introductions to physical science, life science, and earth science.  The introduction to physical sciences will emphasize matter and its interactions.  An introduction to life sciences will emphasize cells, heredity, and human body systems.  Earth science will also be introduced with an emphasis on weather and climate.


SCIENCE 8

Eighth grade science will consist of an overview of Earth Science, Biogeology and Physical Science. An introduction of Earth Science will include the plate tectonics theory, the rock cycle, the history of Earth (including biological and geological history), and climate. An introduction of Astronomy will emphasize the Earth/Moon/Sun system, other planets in the Solar System, and their place in the Universe. Physical science will include theories of interactions between objects in the universe.


DIGITAL STUDIES 6 - This class is a semester long computer class. Focus will be on Office programs using Word, Excel, and PowerPoint. Students will participate in an online typing program to increase their keyboarding skills.  Google programs such as Google Docs, Gmail and Google Earth will be used. Students will also be introduced to 3D drawings and design using Google SketchUp. In addition, students will learn about digital citizenship, including Internet safety and how to prevent cyber bullying.


DIGITAL STUDIES  7 - This is a semester class. Students learn to successfully navigate and construct polished projects in Word, Excel, and PowerPoint, with original artwork created digitally. Learn the history of technology and the parts of a computer.  Apply Office skills to Google Docs programs to create Documents, Spreadsheets, Presentations, Forms, and Drawings. Compare casual friendly email to business email. Discuss Internet Safety and the possible long term ramifications.  Reflect and evaluate online safety.


DIGITAL STUDIES 8 - A semester course designed to simulate a business model. The students will be trained in the following computer skills:  Internet, Email, Google Docs, Microsoft Office Applications and business work ethics. Students will be taught to become individual and group workers. The course is considered prerequisite for a number of high school courses, allowing for dual credit for some high school classes.


PHYSICAL EDUCATION- Physical Education is a semester long course designed to teach students skills, activities and games to help practice a lifetime of health and wellness as well as develop skills that demonstrate acceptable and responsible behavior in a social environment.


ATHLETIC CONDITIONING- Athletic Conditioning is a weight room based class that teaches proper lifting technique, weight room safety, and the process of creating a  workout routine. The main goal of the class is for students to take what they’ve learned and use it outside of the classroom setting.


ART 6 -   This is a semester class that will explore the elements and principles of design.  A variety of media will be used.  Various cultures and subject matter will be explored.


ART 7 - Students will study Two-Dimensional Visual Art through a variety of media such as drawing and painting.  Students will learn art elements; line, shape, space, value, color, form, texture and Art principles; rhythm, harmony, balance, movement, unity, and space. Thematic and cultural elements, art history and appreciation will be introduced.


ART 8-   Students will study Three-Dimensional Visual Art through a variety of media such as sculpture and ceramics.  Students will learn the art elements of line, shape, space, value, color, form, and texture.  Students will learn the art principles of rhythm, harmony, balance, movement, unity, and space.  This course will introduce thematic and cultural elements in addition to art history and appreciation.


WORLD LANGUAGE 7– World language exploratory is the study and introduction to foreign languages and culture in Spanish, German, and French.  Students have an opportunity to get a feel for the three languages so when entering high school, a valid interest for a foreign language can exist.


SPANISH 8 - Introduction to the world of Spanish, a semester long class teaching basics in the language of Spanish.


PRE-ENGINEERING A - (Design & Modeling/Automation & Robotics) This semester long course, available to 7th and 8th graders, sets the foundation for all Project Lead The Way courses, and is the ideal first PLTW course for a student to take. In the Design and Modeling unit, students apply the design process to solve problems and understand the influence of creativity and innovation in their lives. They work in teams to design various items, capturing research and ideas in their engineering notebooks. Using CAD design software, students create a virtual image of their designs and produce a portfolio to showcase their innovative solutions. In the Automation and Robotics unit, students trace the history, development, and influence of automation and robotics as they learn about mechanical systems, energy transfer, machine automation, and computer control systems. Students use robotics systems to design, build, and program real-world objects such as traffic lights, toll booths, and robotic arms. (2014-15 School Year Only: Current 7th graders who took Gateway 7 with Mr. Brown or Mr. Yearout are not allowed to enroll in this course)


PRE-ENGINEERING B - (Magic of Electrons/Flight & Space) Through hands-on projects in Magic of Electrons, students explore electricity, the behavior and parts of atoms, and sensing devices. They learn knowledge and skills in basic circuitry design, and examine the impact of electricity on the world around them. The exciting world of aerospace comes alive through Flight and Space. Students explore the science behind aeronautics and use their knowledge to design, build, and test an airfoil. Custom-built simulation software allows students to experience space travel. This course is one semester in length and is available to 7th and 8th graders.


PRE-ENGINEERING C - (Energy and the Environment/Green Architecture) In Energy and the Environment, students are challenged to think big and toward the future as they explore sustainable solutions to our energy needs and investigate the impact of energy on our lives and the world. They design and model alternative energy sources and evaluate options for reducing energy consumption. Today’s students have grown up in an age of “green” choices. In the Green Architecture unit, students learn how to apply this concept to the fields of architecture and construction by exploring dimensioning, measuring, and architectural sustainability as they design affordable housing units using 3D architectural design software. This course is one semester in length and is available to 7th and 8th graders.


COMPUTER SCIENCE 8 - This is a semester long Project Lead The Way course for 8th graders only that focuses on how computers are used for computational thinking, what most people call programming. In this course you will use MIT App Inventor to create simple apps for the Android system, and learn some basics about the Python programming language. You will often work in “real world” settings, where you are attempting to solve a problem for a potential customer or client, giving you great practice at real work skills!


6TH GRADE MUSIC

Students who are not enrolled in band or orchestra are required to take music and art in the sixth grade. Goals for this course are: 1. Explore the concepts of musical styles and genres, 2. Develop basic knowledge of music history, 3. Explore other world cultures through World Music Drumming (DNMS) 4. Develop a life-long appreciation of all aspects of music, 5. Build self-confidence and respect for yourself and others. 6th graders are also welcome to audition for the 6th Grade Honor Choir (Padawans) that meets from 7:50-8:30am, Tuesday-Friday.


7TH/8TH - VOCAL MUSIC - There are three choirs offered for 7th/8th graders - Wonder Women (7th/8th Women), Men of Steel (7th/8th men), Millennium Falcons (auditioned 7th/8th Women's). This class is designed for students who enjoy singing. Goals for this course are: 1. Develop the ability to sight-sing simple melodic lines and rhythms, 2. Learn and apply music theory to all choral literature, 3. Develop basic vocal technique/elements, 4. Explore various genres and styles, 5. Learn, memorize, and perform a variety of quality choral repertoire, 6. Develop concert etiquette skills, as a performer and audience member, 7. Evaluate musical performances, 8. Create a positive learning environment by working as a group towards a common goal, 9. Build self-confidence and respect for yourself and others, 10. Strive to become responsible and mature leaders in the Derby community.


Instrumental Music-Band and Orchestra


  • Develop the ability to sight read increasingly difficult melodic lines and rhythms and accurately play their assigned parts; alone and in a group

  • Learn and apply music theory to grade level appropriate instrumental literature, explore various genres and styles of music

  • Develop concert etiquette skills, as a performer and audience member, listen, analyze, and evaluate music performances

  • Manage instrument care and maintenance,

  • Audition, if interested, for a variety of honor groups offered outside of the classroom and opportunities to develop soloistic techniques

  • Create a positive learning environment by working as a group towards a common goal,

  • Build self-confidence and respect for yourself and others,

  • Strive to become responsible and mature leaders in the Derby community


BAND 6 (full year) In order to participate in 6th grade band, you must have one year prior experience in school band.  6th grade band performs two concerts per year.

BAND 7 (full year) In order to participate in 7th grade band, you must have had two years prior experience in school band.  7th grade band works on advanced techniques and performs three concerts each year.  

BAND 8 (full year) In order to participate in 8th grade band, you must have had three years prior experience in school band. 8th grade band performs up to four times a year with opportunities to play in an honor group for competitions.


ORCHESTRA 6 - year long - In order to participate in 6th grade orchestra, you must have had one year prior experience in school orchestra. There will be at least one concert per semester.


ORCHESTRA 7 – year long - In order to participate in 7th grade orchestra, you must have had two years prior experience in school orchestra. Students will be introduced to more advanced techniques such as tuning, shifting, and vibrato. There will be at least one concert per semester.


ORCHESTRA 8 - year long - In order to participate in 8th grade orchestra, you must have had three years prior experience in school orchestra. Students will master advanced techniques in order to be prepared for high school orchestra. There will be at least one concert per semester.


TEEN LEADERSHIP I - Students will develop leadership skills in personal and business areas by developing a healthy self-concept, healthy relationships, and learning to understand the concept of personal responsibility (prerequisite to Teen Leadership II).


TEEN LEADERSHIP II - Students must have had Teen Leadership I to take this class.  This class will continue to develop leadership skills, give an understanding of goal setting, and help develop their own mission statement.  This will help them to become better family members and citizens.


FAMILY AND CONSUMER SCIENCE 7 (FACS) - This class consists of one quarter food preparation, kitchen safety, food selection and wellness.  Another quarter consists of an introductory unit on child care and development and completion of two sewing projects—a patchwork pillow and an apron.


FAMILY AND CONSUMER SCIENCE 8 (FACS) —This class consists of an introductory unit on money management including advertising, comparison shopping and checking accounts.  Sewing project is pajama shorts.  The other quarter consists of food preparation skills, food/kitchen safety, nutrition, and teamwork concepts.


YEARBOOK 7 & 8 - Students are accepted into this year long course after interviewing with the advisor.  Students will learn photography, design layout, reporting skills and marketing to create and sell the school yearbook.


STUDENT HELPERS 8-  Teachers may elect to have student helpers, 1 per semester.  Student Helper forms may be picked up at the main office.




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