Academics
Middle School | Grades 7–8

Curriculum for Grades 7–8

List of 13 items.

  • Curriculum Overview

    The Middle School humanities curriculum employs the seminar format, based on the Socratic method, for in-depth exploration into the realms of literature, language, creative writing, history, geography and current events.
     
    To this end, the Middle School day combines regularly scheduled class time, along with opportunities for students to collaborate in small groups and to work independently during self-directed work time. The academic year is divided into five academic cycles and one three-week immersion cycle. Each cycle includes interdisciplinary projects designed to connect concepts and deepen understanding across discrete academic subject areas. A strong emphasis on Math and Writing Skills is reinforced in each discipline, and a differentiated learning approach ensures that each student is challenged.
     
    During self-directed work time, students can work closely with teachers and peers to absorb classroom content at a deep level. They are also charged with honing less tangible skills that, ultimately, allow them to succeed in a wide variety of secondary schools.
  • Language

    Literature
    Reading is a core element of the Inly Middle School curriculum. Students read assigned literature selections throughout the year, which are discussed in literature discussion group twice per week. Practice with written response in the form of short answer, reflection and formal essay, is an important component of our literature curriculum. In addition, students are required to read and write a review of one additional novel of their choice each cycle.

    Writing
    There is a heavy emphasis placed on writing in the Inly Middle School curriculum. Writing skills are introduced in a writing class that meets in small groups two times per week. The 10 elements of writing introduced in writing class are then practiced and reinforced in appropriate academic disciplines throughout the year. The 10 elements of writing central to our curriculum are:

    1.    Writing complete sentences and topic sentences
    2.    Cohesive paragraph construction
    3.    Personal essays
    4.    Five-paragraph essays   
    5.    Business writing (resume, cover letter, thank you note)
    6.    Note taking
    7.    Outlining
    8.    Report writing
    9.    Lab report/observations
    10.    Poetry

    Vocabulary
    We believe authentic learning to be of primary value for all learning styles. Therefore, whenever possible, our vocabulary curriculum comes from class discussion, as well as from independent and academic reading. Additionally, we supplement these sources with an ongoing independent study of vocabulary. Students self-assess, set work goals, and work independently throughout the week to master new vocabulary. Eighth grade students who are preparing for the SSAT may choose to use SSAT vocabulary preparation material in the fall.
  • Mathematics

    The central goals of the mathematics program are to introduce the students to the power of mathematical abstraction and to provide opportunities for them to develop their skills in solving real-world problems through the creation and use of mathematical models. Many of the concepts that we will develop will arise out of their work in science, and others will arise in response to problems in other arenas. In all cases, however, mathematical abstractions will follow concrete experiences.
    Algebra and Geometry
    Elementary algebra and geometry are studied over the course of two years. In the first year, topics of study include:
    • number theory,
    • the distributive property,
    • elementary techniques of solving equations,
    • solution of word problems,
    • graphing techniques, and
    • an introduction to linear functions.
    In the second year, these topics are developed further and we introduce:
    • the quadratic,
    • exponential, and
    • rational and square root functions.
    The depth of each child’s investigation of these functions will depend upon his/her interest in and facility for grasping mathematical ideas but, after a function has been introduced, it will be developed and extended throughout the year.

    The graphing calculator is a tool central to our daily work; it creates opportunities for students to investigate relationships in order to discover patterns that would otherwise escape all but the most insightful students.
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  • Science

    The Middle School science program is a discovery-based program which integrates mathematics, reading, writing and, when possible, the social sciences. The central goal of the science program is to help each student develop an appreciation for the formal process of scientific inquiry. Experiments are constructed and performed by the students, and their detailed analyses are kept in a portfolio. Emphasis is placed upon observation, measurement, organization of data and scientific inference.
     
    Our science curriculum follows a two-year cycle that focuses one year upon Physical Science, and the next upon Earth Science and Life Science.
  • History

    The Middle School humanities curriculum employs the seminar format, based on the Socratic method, for in-depth exploration into the realms of literature, language, creative writing, history, geography and current events.
     
    Our history curriculum cycles between modern American history and world history. History class formally meets twice per week and is often the topic of small group discussions during independent time. We use a textbook, The History of Us by Joy Hakim, supplemented with primary documents and other appropriate reference materials.
  • World Languages: Spanish

    Every Inly Middle School student takes Spanish. The Spanish program is designed to enable students to speak and write their basic thoughts and questions in a second language. The curriculum utilizes a combination of speaking, writing and activities that are often based on music, art or Total Physical Response. Students learn to express themselves in a second language environment that promotes confidence and creativity.

    Middle School Focus:
    • Creative writing and speaking
    • Vocabulary
    • Reading activities
    • Interactive games
    • Journals
  • Experiential Learning

    The curriculum is integrated, interactive and, whenever possible, experiential. Experiences like running a business, open ocean rowing and internships provide the context for students to apply their academic and social learning in authentic and memorable ways.

    Download the "Inly Middle School Experiential Field Studies" page to the right for details on each program. 
  • Practical Life

    Dr. Montessori recognized adolescence to be an age of great social development, an age of critical thinking and re-evaluation, and a period of self-concern and self-assessment. Personal reflection, goal-setting and journaling are integral parts of our life skills curriculum.
     
    The Inly life skills curriculum follows a two-year rotation. We read the book The Seven Habits of Highly Effective Teens by Sean Covey and do group and individual work in the accompanying workbook on a regular basis throughout the year.
     
    Our exploration of the individual’s relationship to society is further explored as the students construct and run their class government, create and assign classroom responsibilities, manage the middle school pizza business, volunteer time outside of the school day in the active learning business fund, and assume leadership roles within the broader Inly School community.
  • Visual Arts

    The Inly visual arts program seeks to foster creativity, problem-solving, and self-expression as it relates to each child's level of development from Toddler to Middle School. Art lessons use a variety of auditory, kinesthetic and visual components. Students are encouraged to experience the art process. Each concept is presented utilizing a variety of 2-D and 3-D materials to help them truly absorb and understand the lesson's objectives. Lessons include drawing, painting, sculpture, collage making, and print making.
     
    Middle School students learn to recognize and understand the following: 
     
    Concepts of line/shape/form
    • how a connection of point becomes a line
    • how a 2-D shape becomes a 3-D shape—as in sculpture
    • how a closed line of points becomes a line—showing movement, edges
    • expressing feelings
     
    Concepts of color
    • color terms and definitions: hue, value, shade, chroma, primary, secondary and intermediate colors
    • monochromatic/complementary colors
    • color wheel: the colors and sequences
     
    Concepts of texture
    • surface variations-implied or actual markings
    • sense varying texture by touch and sight
    • describe textures with words
    • create a variety of textures
     
    Basic patterns of organization
    • repetition/pattern
    • sequence
    • universal basic structures: radial, spiral, dendritic/branching, orbital, gradient, mosaic, modular chain, grid, waves closure, symmetry and rhythm
     
    Whole-to-part relationships
    • process of reduction of whole to parts
    • process of construction of parts to a whole
    • grouping by similarities and differences
    • spatial awareness—positive and negative space
     
    Processes of change
    • sequential process
    • abstraction
    • relationships between objects and symbols before and after change occurs
    • transformation
    • cycles of nature and time
  • Music

    The music curriculum combines individual and group work with work designed to appeal to a variety of learning styles. This directly relates to our philosophy of enhancing the Montessori philosophy with other innovative methods. The music curriculum also offers significant opportunities to build community through our numerous performances, field trips and assemblies.

    Middle School focus: 
    •    Continued use of all rhythmic combinations and the use of polyrhythms
    •    Focus on performance and analysis of popular music
    •    Study of the role of music in students' lives
    •    Examination of theater and film scores
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  • Movement Arts

    The ultimate goal of our program is to assist all children along the path to lifetime physical fitness, which aligns with our holistic mission. The benefits of this journey are many: health, longevity, positive body image, improved overall self-esteem, and increased energy and concentration in all areas. All students from Toddler to Middle School participate regularly in Movement Arts classes and activities.
     
    Our Movement Arts program embraces the philosophy of the school as a whole. At each level, the program is responsive to the needs and interests of the children, and the ultimate goal is the joyful discovery of movement and its benefits, both physical and psychological.
     
    Inly Movement Arts seeks to benefit all children, not just those with particular interest or talent in this area. Volumes have been written about the connection between body image and overall self-esteem, as well as the dangers of introducing children to competitive sports at an early age. Care is taken to keep the emphasis on fitness and fun, as opposed to individual superiority of skills.
     
    Middle School focus: 
    • Strength conditioning, increased endurance and flexibility
    • Relaxation techniques and stress management through movement
    • In-depth movement analysis
    • Creative self-expression and positive self-image through dance and movement appreciation
    • Advanced movement and manipulative skills through games and sports activities
  • Athletics

    All Inly sports curriculum units include stretching, running, basic movements and games. Students participate in skill-building games focusing on team building, learning individual strengths and areas for development, self-discipline, coordination, balance, endurance, sportsmanship, overall fitness and skill building for specific sports.
     
    Students are introduced to a variety of games and exercise, throwing and catching, relay races, obstacle courses, and drills. They also learn the fundamentals of soccer, basketball, baseball, and flag football building to the ability to scrimmage and play short games.
  • Library & Technology

    The library and technology curriculum for middle school continues to build on skills developed in upper elementary, especially as they relate to interpretation of material and evaluation of sources.
    Emphasis on planning and process:
    • Task definition
    • Information seeking strategies
    • Location and access
    • Use of information
    • Synthesis
    • Evaluation
    Exit standards
    • Advanced use of software tools through regular use: word processing, drawing, presentation, database, spreadsheet, digital image manipulation, and mixed media
    • Students will work with the director of technology with the goal of each graduating student having an electronic portfolio of their work on disc.
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Inly School

46 Watch Hill Drive | Scituate, MA 02066
Tel: 781-545-5544 | Fax: 781-545-6522
Welcome to Inly, a private, independent Montessori school with innovative programs that inspire toddlers, preschool and K-8 students to become independent, lifelong learners. Our inviting community draws students from 20 towns on the South Shore of Boston,
including Scituate, Cohasset, Hingham, Norwell, Hanover, Marshfield, Pembroke, Plymouth and Hull.