The Language Arts Curriculum is literature-based with an emphasis on vocabulary development and application. Our program is enhanced by additional projects using grade appropriate novels. Each grade level reads to analyze and interpret appropriate literature. They describe and connect the essential ideas, arguments and perspectives of the text by using their knowledge of text structure, organization and purpose. As they read and discuss the various selections, the students learn lessons about life and gain exposure to many different cultures and customs.
Middle school students write narrative (story), expository (informational), persuasive, and descriptive texts. They are introduced to biographical and autobiographical narratives. Poetry and research papers are incorporated in the writing curriculum. Students are taught to deliver focused, coherent presentations that convey ideas clearly and concisely. Reading and writing skills are strengthened by use of technology.
Science in the middle school is charged with inquiry and discovery. The scientific method is developed and mastered through challenging lab projects. Students focus on the nature of science and technology, scientific thinking, and the three branches of science (physical, life, and earth). Also, middle school students explore patterns in science using models and the mathematical world with its relationship to science. Historical perspectives are introduced for students to gain understanding of how the scientific world operates. All middle school students are exposed to robotics on a weekly basis. This is embedded in the middle school science program and enhanced by volunteers from Patuxent Naval Air Station.
The Archdiocese of Washington’s Academic Standards for social studies are organized around 5 content areas that include the study of the History, Civics and Government, Geography, Economics, and the Individuals, Society and Culture of various regions throughout the world. Students in Grade 6 focus on the study of Europe, North and South America to include the regions of Central America and the Caribbean Islands. In Grade 7 students study the regions and nations of Africa, Southwest and Central Asia, South Asia, Southeast Asia, East Asia and the Southwest Pacific. Students in Grade 8 concentrate on the United States and study the early history, Revolution and founding era, the principles of the United States and Maryland constitutions and other important founding documents and apply them to political and civic life. Students also study the development of the nation, social reform movements, westward expansion, the Civil war, and Reconstruction.
The Archdiocese of Washington’s Academic Standards for religion are organized around 6 Key Elements that include the Knowledge of Faith, Liturgical Education, Moral Formation, Prayer, Education for Living in the Christian Community, and Evangelization and Apostolic Life. Grade 6 Students focus on the Old Testament and learn how the Church is rooted in the signs and symbols of the Old Testament. Grade 7 students focus on the New Testament and the life and teachings of Christ, the role of the Holy Spirit as a guiding force in the life of the church, the role of the apostles and our mission as Christians. Students in Grade 8 focus on the Church History and the role of the Holy Spirit in the Church and in our lives as we are called to be disciples.
The 6th grade math curriculum includes the investigation of mathematical connections through the Saxon Math series. Students explore and solve problems using number sense, computation, algebra, functions, geometry, measurement, data analysis, and probability. Problem solving is based on real world situations using learned content and concepts. Students in the 7th grade take Pre-Algebra and cover the following topics: operations with integers and rational numbers, expressions and equations, solving for variables in multi-step equations and inequalities, solving proportions and similar figures, percents, linear and nonlinear functions and graphing, real numbers and right triangles, distance and angles, surface area and volume and statistics with probability. The 8th grade math course is Algebra 1 and it is preparation for their high school math careers. Students will learn about expressions and functions, linear equations and inequalities, exponents and exponential functions, quadratic equations and functions, radical functions, basis of geometry, rational functions, statistics and probability, and graphing systems. The Algebra 1 course taken during the student’s 8th grade year is equivalent to the Algebra offered in high school.
Our Specials classes are designed to enrich our students’ learning environment. This is achieved through cooperation between all teachers that work with our Middle School students. Special projects, performances, and holiday tributes are coordinated with the overarching goal of providing our students with opportunities to experience differentiated instruction.
Little Flower’s visual arts program is standards-based and built around the elements of design. We work to integrate themes from core subjects into our study of art and design. Student projects often correspond to a unit in one of their core classes. Students are given the opportunity to experiment with a variety of artistic materials and supplies. Master works are studied, with an emphasis on connecting the artist’s time period to lessons learned in Social Studies, Religion, etc., in order to provide the students with additional context.
Students interested in continuing their music education in middle school have the opportunity to participate in our School Choir, which is open to Gr. 4-8, and/or band.
Middle School students take enrichment courses each week, with quarterly rotations. These classes are designed to expose students to areas of interest and enhance their well-rounded, comprehensive education.
The primary goal of Little Flower’s Middle School Physical Education program is to assist students in understanding the connection between physical activity, good health and quality of one’s life, and also to enable them to be responsible for their individual choices. The standards-based program allows students to learn and participate in preparation, technique and rules of games as well as physical activities outside of sports.