The Humanities curriculum in the Middle School uses an interdisciplinary approach toward learning the social sciences and language arts. The program develops an understanding of concepts and development of skills that draw upon such disciplines as history, geography, literature and English language.
This course honors the developmental level of the child, encouraging students to take academic risks, to seek connections among disciplines, and to challenge concrete and abstract thinking skills. Higher-level analysis of concepts is required and research skills are emphasized. A student’s need to reflect on and produce writing that is well organized, follows a clear structure, and expresses ideas meaningfully becomes increasingly important throughout their years in the middle school.
Students explore the connection between reading and writing by reading a variety of genres for a variety of purposes. Additionally, students are exposed to rich grammar and language, supporting critical language skills that shape their ability to meet the demands of the middle school curriculum. Teaching of the writing process is strongly emphasized. Focus on study skills, along with listening and speaking skills are also an important part of the curriculum. The 6th grade studies maps and globes, Europe in the Middle Ages, and Feudal Japan. The 7th grade focuses on China, India, and Africa, and the 8th grade studies current events, the US constitution, Western expansion, slavery, the Civil War, reconstruction, industrialization, immigration, and the World War I. Appropriate novels support all themes studied in order to reinforce a multidisciplinary approach.