Welcome to the Middle School
Middle school is a challenging time for students, and a time of significant transitions. Students leave the comfortable elementary school they have most likely known for most of their lives and enter a new, different, more challenging school environment amidst tremendous changes happening in their bodies and minds.
Our middle school curriculum considers the developmental needs of these students as they transition into and travel through this new phase of their education.
Overview of Middle School Curriculum
Middle schoolers’ schedules consist of:
Core courses attended 5 times per week: ELA (known as “Point of View” at Q2L), math (known as “Codeworlds”), science (known as “The Way Things Work”), and social studies (known as “Being, Space and Place”)
Home Base: a class/advisory program students attend 2-3 times per week throughout middle school in which each student has a faculty advisor who knows them well and is their advocate, and with whom families can communicate about their child.
Game Design and Visual/Media Art (known as “Sports for the Mind”)
Spanish (for 8th graders)
Wellness: A holistic approach to health involving physical education and sports in the gym three times per week, and classroom work two times per week focused on topics including nutrition and social and emotional health
Boss Level: A one week “intensive” at the end of each trimester where students apply acquired knowledge and skills in a collaborative project to propose and design solutions to complex problems with a game-design slant.
Leah Hirsch – The Way Things Work, (known as “Science” in other schools) – sixth grade
“In The Way Things Work, my sixth graders play digital and analog games, design games, and even get into the game, as medical detectives on a mission to help save a wayward but well intentioned doctor, Dr. Smallz. For 12 weeks, they embark on a learning adventure based on Dr. Smallz’s mishaps. Students get a chance to be scientists, designers, makers and players as they learn all about human body systems, cellular functions, and the ability of the human organism to maintain dynamic equilibrium. The Dr. Smallz Mission is an example of the type of game-like learning experience that creates a powerful “Need to Know” in students, leaving them hungry to learn more.”
Mission Lab is a cooperative learning space for our teachers, a place where they can collaborate with each other to create curricula using the Seven Principles of Game-like Learning. In addition, in Mission Lab our teachers have the opportunity to work with game designers from The Institute of Play.