Grade Seven

Grade seven further prepares boys as active learners and critical thinkers. Students expand upon academic skills learned in grade six and delve more deeply into the study of core subjects. In the middle of Middle School, boys solidify their foundational skills.

In Grade Seven, your son will study:

Language Arts

Seventh grade language arts focuses on furthering key skills in literature, grammar, vocabulary, and writing. Students will comprehend deep scholarly analysis, build upon a strong foundation in grammar and vocabulary, and learn to organize, compose, and edit various modes of writing. Each student should comprehend and dissect appropriate literature of various genres, examine sentence structures as well as functions of words and phrases, memorize and correctly use new vocabulary, and create a strongly organized and edited expository three‐paragraph essay of literary analysis as well as assorted creative compositions.

Pre-Algebra

In this course, students become proficient at the skills they will need for success in grade 8 Algebra I: operating with integers, exploring algebraic expressions, and solving simple equations. They firmly establish the relationship among number sets and become comfortable making decisions when operating in the rationals. The students apply their skills to word problem settings and real life geometry. An enriched class is also available.

United States History

"...That all men are created equal..." from the Declaration of Independence provides a theme and checkpoint for students as they progress through different time periods in U.S. history. In addition, the course is designed so that events are studied largely in the context of the people who helped shape them. For example, while learning about Thomas Jefferson and his central role in the country’s founding, students examine America's struggle to become an independent country and its efforts to establish a democratic government. Projects, research, and internet exploration highlights students’ study of the Constitution, the War of 1812, westward expansion, the inception of the Industrial Revolution, the study of slavery and its impact on the country, Abraham Lincoln, the Civil War Reconstruction, Jim Crow laws, and the Civil Rights movement of the 1960's.

Life Science

Seventh grade life science defines what it means to be living and focuses on life at the cellular level. The boys begin learning the proper technique involved in scientific sketching and labeling. Sketching is used throughout the year in all units of biology. Each unit focuses on a combination of rigorous science content and thorough laboratory work. The boys begin to apply the concepts learned through their textbook and class discussions to the samples seen through the microscope.

French or Spanish

Students in French and Spanish continue to study elements of the language with a strong emphasis on basic oral and written sentence construction and aural and reading comprehension. Initially the program concentrates on the alphabet and phonics, subject pronouns, the present tense of regular and select irregular verbs, articles, classroom commands, the negative, and basic prepositions. Grammar is illustrated through simple vocabulary themes such as classroom objects, the calendar, weather and seasons, numbers, colors, time, and school subjects. Throughout the remainder of the year, the daily life of a typical French/Spanish‐ speaking teenager provides the core of the cultural content of the course. Classroom instruction is conducted in the target language.

Talk II

Talk II encourages students to develop positive human values and to become constructive participants in their communities. Specifics include: group dynamics; self‐concept development; parent‐child interaction; relationships; discrimination and prejudice; the decision‐making process; substance abuse prevention; human development; and school issues. Students will explore values and ethics as they relate to human development and sexuality.

General or Instrumental Music

General music in the seventh grade builds a stronger understanding of the elements of music. Students are exposed to a variety of music styles, including jazz, classical, and non‐western music. They learn how to analyze rudimentary song forms and work with software programs such as Finale Notepad to create individual compositions. Students enrich their understanding of staff and keyboard organization, key signature and scale identification, and other essential elements of music using the software program Music Ace. In addition, students work as a team to develop performance skills through the study of keyboard and drum circles.

The emphasis of the sixth and seventh grade band programs is to build a strong base of music reading and appreciation through instrumental study. Students are expected to perform notation as a result of individual and group practice. The students are provided opportunities to perform styles of music from various time periods and cultures.

Art

Students increase and enhance their critical thinking skills through closer observations of the visual world in which they live. Students are encouraged to document their observations with the use of a camera from personal device of choice. They continue to build skills in articulation by expressing ideas and perspectives verbally, in written form, and through the interpretation and creation of art. Seventh grade students are also encouraged to explore their drawing, writing, and creative developments through a sketchbook.

Design and Woodworking

Students construct wooden stepping stools from poplar wood. They create plans for the stool legs and seat inlays, make dimensional sketches and scale drawings, and measure, cut, and assemble the stool. Students also learn how to safely use many new tools that they could not use in sixth grade. They safely use the table saw, chop saw, band saw, and drill press in constructing their stools.

Leadership

The seventh grade leadership course operates under the central assumption that everyone can be a leader. Students develop a personal definition of leadership and identify opportunities to demonstrate leadership and discern the variety of ways people lead. They learn to work with others on a team, identify productive approaches to problem solving and conflict resolution, and feel confident to act as a leader in everyday situations.

Public Speaking

This course exposes students to the exciting challenges of speaking in front of peers and adults. Students learn the important traits of a good speaker and watch and analyze examples of famous and effective speeches. They speak on a variety of topics throughout the course. The course culminates with a formal presentation of a persuasive speech in front of both peers and adults.

Interscholastic or Intramural Athletics

Seventh graders participate in three trimester‐length sports programs. The students choose one sport, depending upon season, from flag football, soccer, tennis, cross country*, water polo*, basketball, wrestling*, swimming*, Polar Bears, lacrosse, baseball, track and field*, and tennis*. They receive daily instruction and game competition as a member of an intramural team. Additionally, seventh graders may have an opportunity to participate on an interscholastic team (indicated by an *).

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