Program of Study

Saint Francis Middle School continues to build on the strong foundation in basic skills areas established Copy of 079in the elementary school. Class sizes typically range from ten-to-sixteen students.  Material is presented in a multi-modal format, taking into account each student’s learning style.  This environment allows students to be challenged to the maximum of their ability in every subject area.

The development of strong reading and writing skills are evident by the two separate periods that are devoted to areas in Literature/Vocabulary and Grammar/Writing.  Significant emphasis is placed on developing strong written expression in all subject areas by “writing across the curriculum.”  Writing classes learn the process approach by planning, organizing, writing, and revising in a variety of writing styles.  Lifelong reading appreciation is encouraged through a sustained silent reading program (SSR) and summer reading assignments.

Subject Offerings

6th Grade 7th Grade 8th Grade
English Literature
Writing/Grammar
Earth Science
World History
Math – Course 1
English Literature
Writing/Grammar
Life Science
United States 1/2
Course 2/Pre Algebra
English Literature
Writing/Grammar
Physical Science
United States 1/2
Pre Algebra or Algebra I

Specials: Physical Education, Art, Music, Drama, Technology   

Subject Descriptions

Language Arts
In the language arts program there is a strong emphasis on the acquisition of basic skills.  One period is devoted to Literature and a separate period for Writing/Grammar.

Reading/Literature
Students continue to work on comprehension skills as they study literary styles and elements related to different genre.  Additional novels are used for sustained silent reading (SSR), where students learn to become more independent and to develop an appreciation for literature.

Grammar
Students reinforce basic grammar skills by identifying parts of speech, in practicing correct usage and when studying sentence structure through diagramming.

Writing
Students develop writing skills necessary to move from the creative writing formats to more informative and analytical writing used in every content area, known as “writing across the curriculum”.   The writing teacher introduces the 5-paragraph format typically used in different forms of writing: expository, persuasion, compare-contrast, cause-effect and short essay.  Students are evaluated on the process as well as the content and mechanics of their writing.

Math
In the math program students move from basic skills practice to higher level math skills involving problem solving, mathematical reasoning, algebraic concepts, geometry, probability and statistics as they prepare for Algebra I.

Science
Students learn to think scientifically.  The science curriculum emphasizes reading in the content area, writing across the curriculum, note-taking skills (Cornell Method) vocabulary development, deductive reasoning and research skills.  Teacher demonstrations and student labs are conducted throughout the school year.

Social Studies
A major emphasis in social studies is “reading in the content area.”  Students develop note-taking skills (Cornell method) by reading and interpreting the major ideas and supporting details from the text.  Students practice their writing and presentation skills when preparing reports and projects related to subject material.  Additional skills include:  timelines, charts, maps, fact/opinion, cause/effect relationships, and writing in the content area.