Middle school at Allendale Christian School is designed to nurture the child emotionally, physically, academically, and spiritually. We help each other experience God through the lens of scripture and discern how we can apply that to our daily lives. While in sixth grade we help students adjust to middle school life and in eighth grade we begin the preparation for high school; seventh grade is a time to help students foster positive habits in all areas of school and life.
Bible: In seventh grade Bible we use the updated Christian Schools International Bible curriculum, Walking with God and His People. Most of the year is spent in the Old Testament. We begin with an overview of the major themes in the Old Testament, followed by a unit on some of the major Jewish feasts and festivals. Through all of this, we try to learn more about our faith and how it is shaped through the history of the Old Testament. These two units are followed by a unit on the book of Job and lastly prayer. The unit on Job helps give us perspective and strengthens our faith in new ways. The unit on prayer causes the students to really stop and think about how they communicate with God.
Language Arts: Seventh grade language arts starts out with a lively poetry unit which includes analyzing, writing, and selecting poetry. In addition to grammar and independent reading requirements, highlights for the course include a short story unit, in which students will read and analyze various science fiction short stories and culminates with the students writing their own science fiction stories. Students will also participate in an argumentative writing unit, in which they will learn to effectively formulate and articulate an argument which includes opposing viewpoints. Students will learn to make connections between various stories through a common theme of “heroism” via a unit that centers around CommonLit readings.
Math: The ACS middle school use Big Ideas Math. This rigorous curriculum “balances conceptual understanding with procedural fluency, as research shows that students benefit from equal exposure to discovery learning and direct instruction” (http://www.bigideaslearning.com/). In 7th grade, students will take either the 7th grade or 7th grade accelerated options. Our study of math enables us to understand in a fresh way our orderly, creative God.
Science: Middle School Science is taught from the Biblical perspective of creation (Genesis 1) and God as the creator of our magnificent universe. The curriculum is a hands-on, problem-solving based curriculum, in which students learn through activities and experiments through a combination of Battle Creek Science units, nature-based experiences, and intentional faith-based reflection opportunities. We begin the year by delving deeper into the energy of sound and light. We also learn about the majesty and power of God as displayed through our climate and weather. One area of study that the students always find amazing is our introductory unit into the world of chemistry. This provides a glimpse into some of the intricate ways that God has created atoms to interact with each other. A final unit of study introduces the students to another area of God’s amazing creativity in heredity and genetics.
Social Studies: (For 2019-20, ACS is switching to History Alive by TCI) We begin the year with a unit on mapping and basic geography skills. We use the World Studies curriculum by Pearson/Prentice Hall beginning with the ancient civilizations from the Fertile Crescent through Ancient Rome followed by a unit on Europe and Russia, a unit on Asia, and finally a unit on Africa. In each case, we study the geography and culture of the various parts of the world. Nystrom Mapping Labs also provide hand-on experiences to coincide with several of our units. Finally, our language arts units often provide enhancement for the content studied in seventh grade social studies. Seventh grade social studies is often a time when the students’ understanding of the length and breadth of God’s world becomes much more real to them.
Art: Seventh Grade students receive one or two (student choice) minutes of art instruction each week. Students are encouraged to explore personal meaning in their art. Students create with the Principles of Design as a main focus and guideline.
Music: Seventh Grade students are involved in band (55 minutes/ 2 days) and/or choir (50 minutes/ 1 day). The mission of the music program at Allendale Christian School is to allow students to discover and develop the musical gifts that God has given them through an appreciation of, enjoyment of, and success in music. In band and choir, students will develop the following musical skills through performance: creating a clear tone with voice and chosen instrument, reading pitches on the treble and bass clef, reading a variety of musical symbols, and performing contrasting parts.
Physical Education: Seventh Grade students receive one or two (student choice) fifty-minute sessions of PE each week. At this point, students should be able to work effectively independently or in groups and make appropriate decisions to resolve conflict in game situations. Each day in class there is a focus on fitness development and skill development.
Spanish: Seventh Grade students received one fifty-minute period of Spanish each week. Additionally, they will receive an extra 50-minute period per week for one trimester during a rotating FLEX class.
Technology: Seventh Grade students receive one fifty minute class related to technology each week. Student learning is focused on using technology responsibly to bring glory to God. Students spend time coding, engaging in research as a part of a 'Genius Hour', discussing relevant technology issues, and implementing their technology skills in the classroom.
Specials Choice: In 7th and 8th grade, students have one 'specials choice' period where they are able to select from options that include classes include Art (clay, painting, etc.), Music (ukulele, film music, etc.) and PE (competitive sports, individuals sports, etc.). This allows students to take an extra class in an area of interest to them.
Extra opportunity for 7th and 8th grade students: In 7th and 8th grade, students have one 'specials choice' period where they are able to select from options that include classes include Art (clay, painting, etc.), Music (ukulele, film music, etc.) and PE (competitive sports, individuals sports, etc.). This allows students to take an extra class in an area of interest to them.