Grades 6-8

middle-school-students-group-pictureThe grade-level environment and integrated curriculum are specifically designed to encourage students to think independently, impartially, critically, and creatively.

The innovative architecture of the building makes use of grade-level pods, providing our students with a smaller school setting, a safe and secure learning environment, and a place to collaborate and build teams. Pods are equipped with audio/visual technology and provide a space for teachers to combine efforts in instruction across the curriculum.

Two deans are the primary contact for parents, students, and teachers as they work together to foster an age appropriate culture of hard work, dedication, and love.

Academic Excellence

Grade 6

Art History

Students will be introduced to the world of art beginning with prehistoric and continuing through art of today. They will learn to articulate interpretations of art and art styles using an understanding of its place in history. Students will be doing art projects, which will allow them to exercise their creativity, experiment with different media and techniques, and make a connection with the art they are studying.

Bible Foundations

Bible Foundations is an introductory course introducing students to the foundational doctrines of the Bible. The goal of the course is to provide students with a framework from which to understand the Scriptures. This course also includes a survey of the historical developments of how, when and why the Bible came into existence.

English

This course seeks to integrate the various components of thinking, reading, writing, speaking, and listening. Through class discussions, projects, and presentations, students will develop the skills of expressing themselves verbally, listening actively, using evidence to support their opinions, and carefully, respectfully, yet critically considering the opinions of others. Students will intelligently evaluate, verify, and articulate their own thoughts along with many competing ideas. Assigned material coincides with all grade-level courses.

History

Sixth grade history is an introduction to the first great civilizations of the world, from beginnings in the Fertile Crescent to Ancient Greece. This is the ancient world, as written in the Bible and revealed through the telling of stories based upon the lives of those who came before us.

Language Wheel

(Chinese, French, Latin, Spanish) Students rotate each quarter to a different language. The 6th grade Language Wheel introduces students to basic structures, high-frequency vocabulary, art, culture and geography of today’s Chinese/French/Spanish speaking countries and the historical Latin speaking world. At the course’s completion, students are expected to be able to compare and contrast the different languages and cultures, and to engage in basic conversation in each modern language.

Mathematics

This course is designed to review the four basic mathematical operations using whole numbers, decimals, and fractions, and apply these operations to the use of ratio, proportion, and percent. The study of algebraic concepts becomes more sophisticated as the students learn integer computation, explore the coordinate plane, write and evaluate expressions, and solve for the unknown. The study of geometry and measurement includes perimeter and area of polygons, circumference and area of circles, and surface area and volume of solids. In addition, sixth grade students study real world applications and problem solving.

Physical Education

The sixth grade Physical Education course focuses on teamwork, team building, and putting the success of team above the achievement of self. Students learn how to relate to each other in an atmosphere of togetherness, utilizing their unique strengths to achieve common objectives. Each student will experience the roles of leader and follower, learning the important characteristics and challenges in each role that help determine the success of a team, group, or community. Students learn basic movement skills, including striking, throwing, kicking, catching, and running within the context of team sports such as, volleyball, soccer, basketball, touch rugby, and hockey, as well as activities like endurance runs and Survivor. An introduction to exercise physiology is also presented, providing knowledge of heart rate, muscular strength and endurance, and flexibility. Character building and the implementation of Christian values on and off the field of play is an overarching focus of the course.

Science

The sixth grade life science course places more emphasis on process than on terminology. Students will use appropriate tools and techniques to gather, analyze, and interpret data. The students will think logically to make the relationships between evidence gathered and explanations given. They will be asked to communicate about their investigations through written reports and oral presentations. Furthermore, students will go on several field trips ranging from walks around the school campus to a three-day science institute on Catalina Island.

Period 7/Academic Support

At the end of each school day, teachers are available during period 7 course time to assist students with homework, studying, and discussion of course material. All students have Academic Help 3 days in their 6-day cycle, alternating with a Period 7 course. The period 7 course for sixth grade students is Introduction to Language.

Core Electives

  • Beginning Band
  • Beginning Piano
  • Beginning Strings
  • Advanced Concert Band
  • Advanced Orchestra Strings
  • Vocal Ensemble

Grade 7

Bible

The primary objective for this course is to introduce students to the life and teachings of Jesus Christ through the Gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John. Students will attain a clearer understanding of the deity of Jesus, the kingdom of God, and the reason for and significance of Christ’s suffering on the cross and resurrection. Study of the parables, the Beatitudes, and Christ’s miracles will also be examined. Students will be encouraged to grow in knowledge and in spiritual depth as they uncover the love and power of our Risen Lord.

English

Each element of the 7th grade English course seeks to integrate the components of thinking, reading, writing, speaking, and listening. This process occurs through the study of literature, grammar, sentence structure, and word origins. Compositions stem from the literature reading and perfecting the eye of student observation.

History

This 7th grade course of study includes:

1st Quarter-

  • Introduction to timelines. Geography of Asia
  • China. The Mongols. Japan

2nd Quarter-

  • Finish Japan
  • Geography of Europe
  • Ancient Europe and Rome

3rd Quarter-

  • Dark Ages and Vikings
  • Geography of the Middle East
  • Islamic simulation activity
  • Medieval Europe and the Crusades

4th Quarter-

  • Finish Medieval Europe
  • Renaissance/Age of Exploration
  • Geography of Latin America; Maya/Aztec/Inca
  • Geography of Africa; Africa

Modern and Classical Languages

Introduction to French
Intro to French is the introductory course to the three-year foreign language requirement for all students. This college preparatory course introduces basic grammar, speech patterns, sentence structure, and common vocabulary used in daily interchange. In the classroom, reading is highly emphasized along with listening to the language in order to acquire the language and then be able to produce the language, thus beginning to learn the skills to be able to communicate effectively in French. Through the process of learning the language, the students explore different Francophone cultures.

Introduction to Latin
Intro to Latin course introduces students to the Latin language through the study of basic grammar, vocabulary and syntax. The students will be using "The Oxford Latin Course, Book I". In addition, the students will use a Latin/English dictionary in and outside the classroom. Students will begin to develop reading, writing, and translating skills in Latin through constant reading and writing exercises, and the practice of parsing Latin sentences. To help the students become more familiar with the Romans, the students will learn Greek and Roman mythology in addition to highlights of Roman history.

Introduction to Mandarin
Intro to Mandarin course prepares students to gain a better understanding of learning the Chinese language. Students learn pinyin (Chinese pronunciation system to represent characters) and a simplified version of Chinese character writing. The culture, traditions, geography, and history of China will also be integrated into the curriculum.

Introduction to Spanish
Intro to Spanish course introduces students to the basic structures, high-frequency vocabulary, speech patterns, sentence structure, art, culture, and geography of Spanish speaking countries. At the course’s completion, students are expected to engage in basic conversations using present tense verbs.

Physical Education

The seventh grade Physical Education course focuses on teamwork, team building, and putting the success of team above the achievement of self. Students learn how to relate to each other in an atmosphere of togetherness, utilizing their unique strengths to achieve common objectives. Each student will experience the roles of leader and follower, learning the important characteristics and challenges in each role that help determine the success of a team, group, or community. Students learn basic movement skills, including striking, throwing, kicking, catching, and running within the context of team sports such as, volleyball, soccer, basketball, touch rugby, and hockey, as well as activities like endurance runs and Survivor. An introduction to exercise physiology is also presented, providing knowledge of heart rate, muscular strength and endurance, and flexibility. Character building and the implementation of Christian values on and off the field of play is an overarching focus of the course.

Pre-Algebra

The Pre-Algebra course provides a foundation in elementary techniques of algebra so that students may go into depth in the subsequent Algebra 1 Honors, Algebra 1 CP, or Algebra 1A course. Pre-Algebra students are expected to develop speed and accuracy in solving problems and multi-step equations with integers, decimals, and fractions. In addition, the course covers laws of exponents, linear functions, statistics and probability, and solving inequalities. Students study the Cartesian coordinate system and fundamentals of geometry. They also learn to apply algebraic methods to the solution of word problems and utilize critical thinking skills.

Principles of Pre-Algebra

The Principles of Pre-Algebra course is designed to review the four basic mathematical operations using whole numbers, decimals, and fractions, and apply these operations to the use of ratios, proportions, and percents. The study of algebraic concepts becomes more sophisticated as the students learn integer computation, explore the coordinate plane, write and evaluate expressions, and solve for the unknown. The study of geometry and measurement includes perimeter and area of polygons, circumference and area of circles, and surface area and volume of solids. In addition, students study real-world applications and problem solving.

Science

The 7th grade earth science course is an integrated, hands-on, inquiry based class that uses materials collected from a wide variety of sources. This course will include the study of topics in life, earth, physical sciences, and astronomy.

Period7/Academic Support

At the end of each school day, teachers are available during period 7 course time to assist students with homework, studying, and discussion of course material. Every student has three days of Academic Help in each 6-day cycle that alternates with one semester of Health/Technology and one semester of an elective.

Core Electives

  • Advanced Concert Band
  • Advanced Orchestra Strings
  • Beginning Guitar
  • Ceramics
  • Dance I & Dance II
  • Digital Design
  • Drama
  • Drawing & Painting
  • Multicultural Art
  • Musical Theatre
  • Speech and Debate
  • Yearbook

Period 7 Electives

  • 3-D Art
  • Advanced Vocal Ensemble
  • Health
  • Mixed Art Media
  • Strength and Conditioning
  • Technology

Grade 8

Algebra

Algebra 1 CP
Algebra I CP focuses on the introduction to and study of linear and quadratic equations, their graphs, and their properties. Major emphasis will be given to understanding patterns, underlying mathematical laws, and reasoning. In the transition to algebra, attention shifts from arithmetic operations to the application of the properties of these operations; all work will revolve around the process of solving a problem.

Algebra 1 Honors

Algebra I Honors focuses on the introduction to and study of linear and quadratic equations, their graphs, and their properties. Major emphasis will be given to understanding patterns, underlying mathematical laws, and reasoning. In the transition to algebra, attention shifts from arithmetic operations to the application of the properties of these operations; all work will revolve around the process of solving a problem. The Honors course requires students to demonstrate a higher level of understanding of these core concepts.

Algebra 1A
Algebra IA focuses on the introduction to and study of linear equations, their graphs, and their properties. Major emphasis will be given to understanding patterns, underlying mathematical laws, and reasoning. In the transition to algebra, attention shifts from arithmetic operations to the application of the properties of these operations; all work will revolve around the process of solving a problem.

Bible

Bible 8 is an introduction to the exciting story of the first believers. We will begin to look at what happens when people and communities follow Jesus. Some of the concepts we will explore through the year include:

  • Early church history
  • Transformation in the lives of the early disciples and communities of believers
  • Spiritual formation—how followers of Christ are shaped by the Holy Spirit Christian community and mission.

Bible Discipleship is an introduction to the exciting story of the first believers. We will begin to look at what happens when people and communities follow Jesus. In the Bible Discipleship course, we will follow the same Bible curriculum as well as spending time exploring the spiritual disciplines as a community of students that have an interest in Christian Leadership. Some of the concepts we will explore through the year include:

Some of the concepts we will explore through the year include:

  • Early church history & leadership
  • The life and leadership of the Apostle
  • Transformation in the lives of the early disciples and communities of believers
  • Spiritual formation—how followers of Christ are shaped by the Holy Spirit Christian community and mission

English

English 8
The word—spoken, written, thought—is full of powerful potential. The study of language and literature, then, becomes a study of works that have shaped our culture and our thinking. But not only that, working hard at the way we use language becomes a key to effective communication, powerful expression, and clear thinking. This English course will stress clear and logical thinking, strong study in the conventions of language, reading, critical thinking, speaking, and listening. We seek to teach students the value the gift of words and to encourage them to develop their own communication skills—particularly the written word—with fine and refined precision. This English course will involve four areas of instruction: literature, writing, grammar/vocabulary, and speaking.

Honors English 8
Honors English is designed for students who have previously demonstrated a natural gift for the English language. These students have shown facility with grammar; lucid writing; broad, self-directed reading; and the ability to move beyond concrete explanations and strictly-limited assignments to more abstract thinking and application. Students will be encouraged to grow into self-directed, and ultimately lifelong, learners of language, and so we will focus on learning and using the tools, methods, and resources available to the language scholar. To that end, this English course will involve four areas of instruction: literature, writing, grammar/vocabulary, and speaking/discussion.

History

In studying the past, students will master specific skills, gain an appreciation for and interest in American history, understand who we are as Americans and learn how God has revealed himself in the history of our nation.

Modern and Classical Languages

By the end of the school year, students will have the equivalent of one year of high school language credit.

French 1

French 1 is the introductory course to the three-year foreign language requirement for all students. This college preparatory course introduces basic grammar, speech patterns, sentence structure, and common vocabulary used in daily interchange. The class is held in French, giving the students the opportunity to absorb as much comprehensible input as time permits in order for natural acquisition of that language to occur. This process allows students to retain the language instead of cramming and promptly forgetting.

Latin 1B
Latin I-B continues where Latin I-A ended, progressing in the study of the Latin language through the study of grammar, vocabulary and syntax. The students will be using "Latin for Americans". In addition, the students will need a Latin/English dictionary to use in and outside the classroom. In this course students will continue to develop reading, writing and translating skills in Latin through constant reading and writing exercises, and the practice of parsing Latin sentences. To help the students become more familiar with the Romans, the students will learn Greek and Roman mythology in addition to highlights of Roman history.

Mandarin Chinese 1

Students will develop a fundamental level of proficiency in oral/aural and written use of basic conversational Chinese. Students will learn pinyin (English letters used to represent the Chinese pronunciation), and simplified version of Chinese character writing (简体字). History, geography, culture, and traditions of the Chinese people will be taught.

Spanish 1
Spanish 1 introduces basic grammar, speech patterns, sentence structure, and common vocabulary used in daily interchange.. This college preparatory course also introduces students to the art, culture, and geography of the 21 Spanish-speaking countries. At the course’s completion, students are expected to engage in basic conversations using present, present progressive, simple future, and past tense verbs.

Physical Education

The Grade 8 Physical Education course builds on the foundation laid in the sixth and seventh grade courses with the addition of individual fitness activities such as aquatics, weight training, and track and field. As in sixth and seventh grade, this course focuses on teamwork, team building, and putting the success of team above the achievement of self. Students learn how to relate to each other in an atmosphere of togetherness, utilizing their unique strengths to achieve common objectives. Each student will experience the roles of leader and follower, learning the important characteristics and challenges in each role that help determine the success of a team, group, or community. Students learn basic movement skills, including striking, throwing, kicking, catching, and running within the context of team sports such as, volleyball, soccer, basketball, touch rugby, and hockey, as well as activities like endurance runs and Survivor. An introduction to exercise physiology is also presented, providing knowledge of heart rate, muscular strength and endurance, and flexibility. Character building and the implementation of Christian values on and off the field of play is an overarching focus of the course.

Science

The eighth grade science course will focus on various areas of physical science including the study of matter, atoms, forces, machines, and chemical reactions. A primary focus will be for the students to gain laboratory experience and develop critical thinking skills. They will also encounter hands-on projects that will require them to work as individuals or teams.

Period 7/Academic Support

At the end of each school day, teachers are available during period 7 course time to assist students with homework, studying, and discussion of course material. Every student has three days of Academic Help in each 6-day cycle that alternates with one semester of Health/Art History and one semester of an elective.

Core Electives

  • Advanced Concert Band
  • Advanced Orchestra Strings
  • Beginning Guitar
  • Ceramics
  • Dance I & Dance II
  • Digital Design
  • Drama
  • Drawing & Painting
  • Multicultural Art
  • Musical Theatre
  • Speech and Debate
  • Technology
  • Yearbook

Period 7 Electives

  • 3-D Art
  • Advanced Vocal Ensemble
  • American Art History
  • Health
  • Mixed Art Media
  • Newspaper
  • Strength and Conditioning

Artistic Expression

Students have an exciting range of opportunities to explore their talent and their interest in the arts. Arts include a wide selection of courses, but also includes opportunities for students not enrolled in a particular class. Many fine arts courses do not presuppose any special talent but do require energetic participation and effort.

Arts Offerings

  • Advanced Concert Band
  • Advanced Orchestra Strings
  • Beginning Band
  • Beginning Guitar
  • Beginning Strings
  • Ceramics
  • Dance I & Dance II
  • Digital Design
  • Drama
  • Drawing & Painting
  • Exploring Art Media
  • Multicultural Art
  • Musical Theatre
  • Speech and Debate
  • Vocal Ensemble
  • Yearbook

For more information, visit the Arts.

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Athletic Distinction

The focus of Oaks Christian Athletics is to develop positive and confident boys and girls who express exceptional character and high moral values on and off the field. We embrace the belief that the athlete's character comes first. Winning is secondary.

Athletic Offerings

  • Baseball
  • Basketball
  • Cheer
  • Cross Country
  • Flag Football (Grades 6-8)
  • Golf
  • Lacrosse
  • Soccer
  • Softball
  • Swimming
  • Tackle Football (Grades 7-8)
  • Tennis
  • Track & Field
  • Volleyball
  • Water Polo

For more information, visit Athletics.

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Signature Programs

Grade 6

Becoming an Oak - We understand that the path to success is a journey. Our incentive program is to reward students along the way. Students can earn tickets throughout the month in order to participate in a monthly grade-level drawing to earn prizes.

Walk Through the Ancient World - This program is designed to allow students to actively participate in a rich retelling of ancient history. Through storytelling, games, and drama, history will come alive! Discover Ancient Egypt, Greece and Rome through an imaginary tour of the ancient civilizations. Students portray historical people of the past, broaden their understanding with maps, timelines, and games while depicting a character from ancient history.

Catalina - Students and teachers experience three days at Long Beach Marine Institute’s Catalina Island Camp. Students are immersed in life science and marine ecology while hiking, kayaking, snorkeling and other activities. It’s a wonderful opportunity to build relationships and spend time in nature.

Greek Days - This annual event integrates all subject matters with two days of recreating the times of Ancient Greeks. Dressed in costume, all the students take the runway and model in a fashion show/contest. Students compete against each other in “Olympic” games. The top boy and girl of each event are crowned with a wreath in our Olympic ceremony. A highlight of the day is our Greek Feast with authentic Greek food.

Getty Center - The Getty is a world renowned museum with a collection that features many of the pieces our students study in 6th grade Art History class. This is an amazing opportunity to spend the day exploring the museum and experiencing art first-hand.

Arts Extravaganza - The MS Arts Extravaganza is an evening to celebrate both performing and visual arts in the middle school. All students in grade 6 perform with their music class but also participate in the annual Art History Showcase that same evening. Students showcase their knowledge of their Art History curriculum and the art they’ve created throughout the year in a cumulative art show where each student serves as a “docent” to tell the story behind the art.

Grade 7

Student of the Month - In support of our school motto, “Preparing Minds for Leadership, Hearts for Service”, students are selected each month by the 7th grade teachers in recognition of their outstanding character, attitude, participation, leadership, and/or service.

Lost Canyon Retreat - Spiritual Emphasis Week is a tradition at Oaks Christian Middle School. We purposefully schedule this retreat near the start of the school year to help students create solid connections with friends and encourage them in their relationships with the Lord. Students enjoy four days in the beauty of Arizona engaging in unique and fun experiences designed to encourage class unity and build teamwork.

Medieval Day - This annual event integrates all subject areas with a full day spent recreating the times of Medieval Europe. Dressed in costume, all students participate in a fun-filled day of activities including jousting and building catapults. The excitement builds as student groups present their castles for judging and the most creative costumes earn a prize. We conclude the day with a delicious Medieval Feast.

Arts Extravaganza - The MS Arts Extravaganza is an evening to celebrate both performing and visual arts in the middle school. Students from all visual arts classes display their art, our dance classes perform, and each beginning and advanced music class performs.

Grade 8

Lost Canyon Retreat - Spiritual Emphasis Week is a tradition at Oaks Christian Middle School. We purposefully schedule this retreat near the start of the school year to help students create solid connections with friends and encourage them in their relationships with the Lord. Students enjoy four days in the beauty of Arizona engaging in unique and fun experiences designed to encourage class unity and build teamwork.

East Coast Adventure - Los Angeles to Boston, then on to Lexington and Concord, New York City, Philadelphia, Gettysburg, Washington, D.C. and back to Los Angeles. Nearly 1,000 miles by bus through eight states in eight days! That is what the eighth-grade students will experience on the annual East Coast Adventure. From Boston’s historic Freedom Trail to the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier at Arlington National Cemetery, the group of students, chaperones, and teachers will explore our nation’s history. Filled with memories of once-in-a-lifetime experiences, insightful knowledge of our nation’s past, and opportunities to forge new and lasting friendships, the annual eighth-grade East Coast Adventure will inspire the young Americans who represent the future of our nation.

Arts Extravaganza - The MS Arts Extravaganza is an evening to celebrate both performing and visual arts in the middle school. Students from all visual arts classes display their art, our dance classes perform, and each beginning and advanced music class performs.