CURRICULUM | GRADES 7 & 8
Students in 7th grade Social Studies will be introduced to a comprehensive study of the world. Through an introduction to the basic skills of geography, students will become familiar with reading physical and political maps, charts, and pictures, and explaining how locations, physical characteristics, climate, and natural resources have influenced the development of countries. Students will gain a foundation in these basics that will serve them throughout the year. Utilizing these skills, students will build their global perspective in the examination of culture, population, language, religion, and current events.
Students can expect to develop a number of skills that will be essential for them as they continue to study Social Studies during their time at Saint John’s, including note-taking, working with primary, secondary, and tertiary sources, and recognizing and analyzing cause and effect, as well as utilizing evidence to write and speak clearly and effectively to a group.
Students in 8th grade Social Studies will learn foundational civic knowledge of the United States and use it to become active, thoughtful citizens. Building on prior knowledge from the 5th grade, students will look at political documents that influenced the founding of the United States along with important documents, texts, and court cases throughout the history of our country. Through primary source analysis, students will learn how to look for bias and arguments in writing while also learning how these sources affect us in the modern-day. These skills will translate over to working with secondary and tertiary sources and help them develop their ability to write persuasively and analyze bias in modern documents. Students will also work on connecting the lessons and precedents set in these documents to the modern-day and how that can help make them active, responsible citizens in our country who work for freedom and justice for all.
CURRICULUM | GRADES 9-12
In 7th-grade English, students will analyze a variety of genres of writing with a focus on textual as well as interpersonal connections. The class will seek to foster an interest in reading independently as well as through class-wide assigned readings. A study of novels, poetry, and short stories will lead students to the examination of several themes that are relevant to the new student at Saint John’s, with a central theme of what it means to be a Pioneer.
Students will develop their skills in written and verbal expression through a variety of modes of expression. Students will build mastery in the areas of narrative, informative, and argumentative writing. Grammatical instruction will focus on proper sentence structure, with an eye towards mastery of parts of speech and conventions of punctuation and spelling. A study of vocabulary in the context of class readings will enable students to expand their communication skills. Public speaking will be an integral part of the course. Assessment for the course will be based on a combination of formal and informal written assignments, and the ability to recall details of class readings, as well as class participation and organizational skills.
In 8th grade English, students will work to both strengthen and acquire new skills in reading, writing, and the English language. Students will be encouraged to make connections and inferences, as well as ask questions in order to gain a better understanding of a work of literature. This class will seek to cultivate a passion for reading and writing, and encourage both outside of the classroom. The eighth-grade curriculum will continue to develop the theme of what it means to be a Pioneer, including the five core values of the Xaverian Brothers: compassion, humility, simplicity, trust, and zeal.
Literature units will focus on different genres that include the short story, fiction, non-fiction, drama, and poetry, to name a few. Writing units will focus on different styles of writing. Grammar and vocabulary will also be incorporated into weekly lessons. Public speaking will be an integral part of the course, as well. Assessment for the course will be a combination of formal, informal, and authentic assessment. At the culmination of the eighth grade, your son will be prepared to begin the challenging, yet engaging curriculum at the high school level.