Programs - Grades
Middle School - This year often marks the beginning of the pre-adolescent’s journey through puberty with all its accompanying tumult. The study of the rise and fall of ancient Rome meets the challenge of this age head on. Construction of magnificent cities, aqueducts, roads and the establishment of social structure juxtapose the damage to indigenous culture and the destruction of the Roman Empire itself through conquest, hubris and excess, which metaphorically reflect the changes and contrasts the children are experiencing in their own bodies. Then on through time they travel, learning about the birth of both Christianity and Islam, and into the middle ages. Previous math operations are reinforced, and the practical topics of ratio and proportion, percentages, principal, interest, discounts and other aspects of business math are the new topics of the year. The beauty of math is explored through geometry. Precision is honed with the tools of the draftsman: protractors, rulers, right angles and compasses. The names of geometric figures and the numerical properties embodied in these figures are learned at this time. The geography curriculum expands beyond North America with a focus on the land and people of South and Central America. Geology, astronomy and an introduction to physics (sound, light, heat) are the major topics in science study this year. Often class trips to caves or a coal mine and overnight star-gazing are planned to bring the curriculum to life. In physics, students are challenged to observe and record their observations during each stage of the scientific demonstration.
To peruse some of the major themes of River Valley’s grade school curriculum at each grade level, please see below:1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 Specialty classes