Language Arts in Sixth Grade is split between our dedicated English teacher and our dedicated Reading and Writing teacher. Middle school Language Arts provides an in-depth study of both areas as students move forward and prepare for high school.
Reading and Writing:
This curriculum is an essential core class structured to engage, nurture, challenge and further academic growth for students. Reading classes are project-based with an emphasis on perspective, service and character, as reading ties in with each core curriculum class. Our cross-curricular approach strengthens not only reading and writing skills, but understanding of other core curriculum classes. Along with our in-class unit, students are expected to read one "choice novel" per month, and to complete a project on that novel that is presented to the class.
Texts used include:
The Giver, Lowry
One Dead Spy, Hale
Love that Dog, Hate that Cat", Creech
-Graphic Novels (cross curricular method)
-Poetry (cross curricular method)
-Author studies (cross curricular method)
Strategies and methods include:
-Introduction to young adult novels, literary elements and poetry
-Literature circles focused on fluency, comprehension, vocabulary, and literary elements.
-Discussions and debates
-Research and writing
-Field Trips that revolve around current reading selections
Students will write clear, coherent and focused essays through ten step Process Writing. This method of writing development is extremely successful in encouraging young writers by building confidence through completion of specific stages.
Grammar will be supported and mastered through daily language review with concentration on simple versus complex sentences, pronouns, prepositional phrases, and punctuation.
Vocabulary is a tool for expression and reading comprehension.
Texts used include:
-Exercises in English
English studies focus on the following areas:
-Persuasive Research Papers
-Utopia Project (Cross curricular with Reading class when reading The Giver)
On a typical day, students strengthen computation and estimation skills, expand logical reasoning, analytical and problem solving abilities by exploring patterns and mathematical rules. These practices cultivate a strong understanding of concepts and processes, which is critical to one's academic success.
Instruction frequently includes work at the board, the use of hands on materials, and working with partners or in differentiated small groups to develop math confidence. We work on applying math knowledge and skills to real life situations in order to stimulate a lasting interest in math.
Our standards-based math curriculum develops understanding of algebraic concepts and skills involving integers, ratio, proportion, percents, data analysis and probability.
Students continue to develop their understanding of the Catholic faith. Curriculum in Sixth Grade is primarily focused on students having a deeper understanding of their faith through the study of the Old Testament (Salvation History). Sixth Grade students embark on this faith formation journey by receiving a Bible during a special ceremony to commemorate this journey.
In addition to these academic areas, students engage in a unit of study and reflection known as "Family Life". During this study, students learn about how they are created in God's image and how the family is both the domestic church and a reflection of God's love. Finally, students learn about their role in the family and their life vocations.
Texts used include:
-Christ our Life 6
Teaching methods include:
-Cooperative Learning Groups
-Whole Group Instruction
-Play based instruction
-Project based learning (often cross curricular)
-Seder Meal participation for the upper school to remind students of our Jewish heritage while calling to mind the Paschal sacrifice of Christ on the Cross.
Sixth Grade students also begin to model leadership and social responsibility as they serve as Mass buddies for our Kindergarten students.
The main focus of our science curriculum is to study not only specific subject matter, but to also understand the history of science, to gain and increase general knowledge and learning how science a valuable tool in understanding our world. Science is a field of study that helps us interconnect systems of knowledge and is greatly helpful in promoting problem solving in the curriculum. In science, we focus on how and why things work.
Students engage in multiple types of learning, including:
-Interactive modules including, videos, games, Powerpoints, and Chromebook use and daily Mimeo Board use.
Science in the Sixth Grade is focused on Life Science. The course is designed around various areas including the study of
-The human body
-Genetics and heredity
-Our fragile environment
There will be numerous demonstrations, experiments, hands-on activities, and videos.
Middle school Social Studies is structured to prepare students for the high school experience. While these are survey courses, students should be pushed to excel and be accountable for their work. Themes woven into the classwork during the year include duty, patriotism, civic service, current events, and social justice.
Classwork consists of essential skills building, including:
Teaching methods and Strategies include:
-Chromebook interactive work
-Mimeo interactive board work
-Projects, including cross curricular projects about Roman Art/Christianity Collage & Cathedral Design/Renaissance Fair
-Text vs. novel reading
-Identifying primary vs. secondary sources
-Utilizing and understanding geography and maps
Texts and resources used include:
-Prentice Hall: History of our World
-Smithsonian's "Tween Tribune" for current events
-Kahoot and Chromebooks
-ADW Social Studies Weebly
Assessments consist of regular review of homework that is turned in, exams and quizzes, midterms and finals.
The middle school Spanish program at St Bartholomew is intended to build student's confidence in communicating in Spanish. The curriculum presents grammar concepts verbally, visually, through interactive exercises, and through reading in order to improve comprehension, retention, and confidence. We engage students in activities that enable them to apply the concepts taught in an environment where the student feels safe to participate actively. Participation in class, which is conducted in Spanish, reinforces concepts, enhances vocabulary, improves pronunciation, and builds confidence. There is discussion of the different customs of Spanish-speaking countries, with a focus on specific places, local foods, holidays, and other traditions. Students are assigned projects throughout the year which reinforce reading and writing skills. Listening skills are taught through activities that include games, songs, and dramatization. During these four years students attend two hours of class weekly.
Teaching materials include textbooks, videos, CDs, presentations, and the internet. Their textbook includes a workbook which the student should use for practice at home, and an interactive website with various activities.
Areas of study in Sixth Grade include:
-Using speaking and listening strategies to facilitate communication
-Compose simple cohesive written information using appropriate formats
-Make presentations to peers in Spanish
Students will continue to learn and build skills in the following areas:
-Microsoft Word 2010
-History of Computers
-Internet Safety and Surfing
Students continue to work with their secure school email accounts so that they can work on Google Docs and Google Slides at home and in the classroom with Chromebooks. Students in Sixth Grade come to the computer lab once a week.
STEM class is currently offered once a week for students in grade 5-8, in addition to an after school club offered for all ages. Each week, STEM class works to address science, technology, engineering, and math skills in a highly engaging environment.
Students develop communication and collaborative skills by working in groups to solve real-world problems and develop robotics skills.
Throughout their projects, students will use the engineering design process to
Ask what the problem is
Imagine possible solutions
Plan to create a prototype
Create and test a prototype
And improve that design