Seventh Grade

The midpoint of the journey through Middle School, Seventh Grade is a time of consolidating academic skills and developing deeper interests and friendships. One minute, students are looking upward and outward at the future before them -- discussing high school, college, and the big world beyond Aspen -- and the next minute, they are laughing together at recess about a silly memory from the Outdoor Ed trip. Seventh Graders are a busy group at ACDS, with many special projects and activities throughout the year.  

Advisory


Personalized guidance

Each student is assigned to an Advisory group led by a Middle School teacher. Advisory groups meet three times each week: first thing Monday morning for a “connections” session, a second time for an advisory period, and a third time in a directed study hall. The Advisory program is designed to guide students in academic life, provide developmental guidance (both formal and informal), encourage supportive peer relationships and practice conflict resolution, promote character development and much more. See more about Advisory

 

Language Arts


Essential Questions

Seventh Grade English students refine their language arts skills by grappling with essential questions that push them to confront themes of classism and prejudice, conflicting human perspectives, and the nature of innocence. Literature selections include The Outsiders, The Pearl, House of the Scorpion, Macbeth, and many short stories and poems. They engage in small and large-group discussions and write five-paragraph essays where they develop a thesis independently, work to incorporate meaningful quotes, and craft a compelling conclusion. They also craft original short stories. The students extend their working knowledge of literary devices such as paradox, biblical allusion, irony, and juxtaposition. They continue to develop their understanding of grammar and writing mechanics through exercises in Rules of the Game 2. See all Language Arts

Mathematics


Pre-Algebra at the right pace

All Seventh Graders take a pre-algebra course in Seventh Grade; however, at this level we split the students into two groups. As students move into a formal study of algebra, they are required to think more abstractly and use flexibility to apply concepts to multi-step equations. Middle School students do this at different developmental points, so we provide instruction at two different paces, and there is additional differentiation within the small groups. In Seventh Grade, students study integers, decimals, fractions, proportions, percent, solving for x, and basic geometry. See all Mathematics

Life Science


Biological basics

Seventh Grade Science focuses on cells, genetics, evolution, microorganisms, and plants. Students write labs as well as more creative pieces to demonstrate not only their understanding of scientific content, but also their ability to use scientific thinking to assess a problem or investigate an area of interest. In addition to learning how to write lab reports, students engage in variety of projects which require them to use creativity and application of understanding. These projects include Cell City, Create-A-Species, Cutting Edge Genetics, and a plant study. See all Science

Western Civilization


Empires and Explorers

The Seventh Grade Social Studies curriculum is a survey of Western Civilization. Students also participate in creating projects for the National History Day competition. In a unit on the Empire of Byzantium, students conduct research to create a timeline of the major events in Byzantine history. In studying the Empire of Islam, they learn about the development and basic teachings of Islam. When delving into the Middle Ages, students focus on the role of Christianity in society and the feudal system. In a study of the Renaissance, they investigate the new world view that characterized the era, along with the birth of the era's new economic and political systems. There are also investigations of explorers and the expansion of empire. A fascinating unit about the era of Revolutions wraps up the year. See all Social Studies

Foreign Language


Learning in the language

Seventh Graders most often enroll in Spanish II or French II, where they become more independent in their study of language. More of the class content, including instructions, is delivered in the target language. Students develop understanding of verb tenses by focusing on present progressive, preterit, and reflexives. They learn about direct and indirect objects and demonstrative adjectives. Students read and write more complex texts. See all Foreign Language

Technology


TOOLS FOR ACADEMIC GROWTH

Middle School students use technology daily. Each Sixth Grader is issued a school Chromebook, which serves as the primary academic tool throughout Middle School. They access online text books, teacher blogs, videos, TED talks, primary sources, and other resources to curate the information necessary to participate in the curriculum in each class. They also use technology to create presentations which may include, Lucidchart, films, blogs, podcasts, or original TED Talks. Students can further their understanding of computer science or coding in the Electives program. See all Technology

Middle School Arts Electives


CHOICES, CHOICES

In Middle School, students choose from a variety of electives. Most electives offered are in the traditional arts, yet the elective program also includes other forms of creativity and innovation, along with physical activities and leadership opportunities. Sixth, Seventh, and Eighth Graders are together for the electives in small groups. They meet two to four times per week. Sample classes include Filmmaking, Improv, Chorus, Guitar, Painting, Sculpture, Yoga, Strength Training, Leadership, and Coding. Coming in 2015 are online classes in CAD, Digital Film, and Chinese! See more about Electives

Physical Education


Strategy and Fair Play

Seventh Graders build their skills in traditional team sports: volleyball, basketball, soccer, flag football, badminton, and hockey, with a focus on development of strategy and fair play. They are also introduced to Ultimate Frisbee and other non-traditional sports and games. In preparation for their winter hut trip, Seventh Graders practice ski touring with climbing skins and telemark skiing. In Middle School, students ski in multi-grade groups with teachers as chaperones; we ski every Friday from January until March break. See all PE

Outdoor Education


Mountain Mastery

All Middle School students participate in the fall trip at Lincoln Creek. Students are put into multi-grade groups to develop bond among grade levels. In these groups, students participate in rock climbing, a ropes course, a hike, community service, and some orienteering. In the evening, students participate in activities and discussion to promote a sense of community. A highlight is a campfire with alumni who return to provide insight into high school and how to keep the Middle School experience in perspective. Seventh Graders' second OUtdoor Ed trip of the year is a hut trip in midwinter. They ski in to the Sangree Froelicher Hut at 11,650 feet above sea level, spending four days studying snow science, writing in their Outdoor Ed journals, and enjoying all the classic ski touring traditions. See all Outdoor Ed

Signature projects & traditions


In the school's Buddy Grades program, Seventh Graders are buddies with the Third Graders, and the two enjoy a wide variety of activities together. Highlights of the Seventh Grade year include National History Day, when the students create interactive projects to display at a forum with their peers at the Aspen Middle School, and the four-day ski touring trip to a backcountry hut. Many Seventh Graders are getting involved with more demanding activities outside of school, and they learn a lot about time management. 

Aspen Country Day School
85 Country Day Way Aspen, Colorado 81611
Phone: 970.925.1909
Time to consider ACDS

Our PreK to Eighth Grade school in the mountains of Colorado

The Way School Should Be

With a balance of nurture and rigor, children become their best

The Power of Three

Rigorous academics, creative arts, outdoor education

A welcoming community

Our motto, de amicitia: in the spirit of friendship

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