MIDDLE SCHOOL CURRICULUM
Middle School students are viewed as leaders on our campus. As a result, we encourage and expect them to exhibit self-discipline, Godly moral judgment, pride in our school, and respect for self and others. These principles are evidenced in the curriculum as well.
The Middle School language arts curriculum at Shepherd of the Desert is thorough. Students develop and expand their skills in reading fluency, literature analysis, reading comprehension, vocabulary usage, and English grammar as it pertains to both speaking and writing. They continue to develop higher level thinking and critical reasoning skills and demonstrate those skills through research projects and formal writing assignments.
The Social Studies curriculum for Middle School encompasses both world and U.S. history. 6th grade students learn about early civilizations and cultures throughout Central and South America, Asia, and Europe. 7th and 8th graders learn about the history of the U.S. and the historical foundations and democratic principles upon which it was founded.
Our Middle School science program covers all of the major strands of science. 6th grade Earth science focuses on rocks and minerals, plate tectonics, weathering and erosion, and weather and climate. Life science is the focus of 7th grade, as students learn about the five major kingdoms and their interaction with one another. Students also learn about the theory of evolution as compared and contrasted with creation. 8th graders have the opportunity to take a more hands-on approach in the areas of physics and chemistry. Physics topics include force, motion, energy, electricity, sound, and light. Chemistry topics include the chemical and physical properties of atoms, elements, compounds, and mixtures. In addition, all 7th and 8th grade students prepare science projects that apply the scientific reasoning and communication skills they have learned.
The Middle School math curriculum reinforces previously taught skills and challenges students to apply those skills to solve complex problems. 6th grade students review number sense, order of operations, measurement, and graphing. In addition, they are introduced to integers, functions, and algebraic reasoning. 7th grade students learn about proportional relationships, data analysis and statistics, and rational and irrational numbers. Advanced 7th graders and 8th grade students study pre-algebra, which involves solving one-step algebraic equations and inequalities, solving problems involving integers and exponents, and more complex data analysis. Our advanced 8th grade students complete a high school level algebra class in which they solve and graph multi-step one and two variable equations and inequalities, solve polynomials, interpret quadratic equations, and are introduced to trigonometry.
Middle School students continue to receive enrichment through our “specials.” More information regarding specials classes can be found under the “specials” tab.