In the context of a challenging, relevant, and multisensory curriculum, our middle school students (known as Helix Bridge) acquire skills relevant to their learning needs, develop strategies necessary to tackle more complex academic material, and learn the value of good study habits. They continue to develop sound Christian values in the face of complicated social experiences, and realize how they are uniquely designed to contribute to a community. In this stage of learning, our students reflect regularly on how they learn and become more self-aware.
Our Approach to Language and Math
Strong literacy skills continue to be the foundation for all subject areas in Middle School. Students extend their knowledge of grammar and basic conventions of written language through integrated grammar lessons in writing, which emphasizes the development of oral to written expression (listening, speaking, discussing, observing, and brainstorming for ideas prior to writing). In the initial stages, most written work is done collaboratively, and by analyzing mentor texts. Once skills are mastered, students gradually work independently with teacher support as needed. Vocabulary expansion is practiced in all subject areas. Basic sentence and paragraph skills are taught in highly structured sentence and paragraph frames, which improve the ability to visually organize materials and to structure the patterns of newly introduced sentences and paragraphs.
The goal of the math program is to tackle increasingly complex ideas with hands-on, concrete experiences first, while preparing to shift to more abstract thinking. Emphasis is placed on logical thinking and problem solving using manipulatives, experiential and project-based learning, collaboration, visual aids, and technology. Multisensory math is continued in middle school to build students' math knowledge from whole-to-part, and differentiated instruction is used to accommodate a wide range of academic abilities and learning styles.
Middle School Profile
Class Size: 8-10 students
With daily participation in our strengths-based, supportive community, academic and social successes lead to self-confidence that serves as the foundation for students to assume responsibility for their own learning. As they begin to experience real accomplishments, greater curiosity and motivation follows. Awareness of unique strengths and learning styles emerge, and Middle School students develop the early skills of self-advocacy and prepare to meet the challenges
of High School.
The Middle School program includes the following:
- Language Arts
- Reading (decoding, fluency, vocabulary, and comprehension)
- Literature (novel studies)
- Science/Social Studies
- Physical Education/Recess (daily exercise and movement)
- Executive Functioning Development (management of time,
materials, and information)
- Social Emotional Development
- Christian Character Class (C3)
- Study Skills (weekly classes)
Enrichment through Electives
Electives vary each year depending on programming, staffing, and scheduling
issues and may include:
- Visual Arts
- Culinary Arts
- Performing Arts
- Game Design