The middle school students have multiple teachers who specialize in individual subjects.
Sixth grade learners participate in higher order thinking, concepts, and activities. Students have the opportunity to work with the San Francisco Opera Guild which leads to a deeper appreciation of performing arts. In Literature, the students are assigned books from a multitude of genres in order to enhance reading comprehension skills which will be essential for understanding textbooks and other more complex texts. The Language Arts, Religion, and Social Studies programs employ project based learning which prepares students for future academic, personal, and career success. Students will prepare for and take the test for Citizenship in order to experience what immigrants actually experience while attempting to become a U.S. citizen. The test has three components which include reading, writing, and speaking. Sixth grade math students focus on understanding the number system as it relates to negatives and positives, greatest common factors, least common multiples, coordinates, expressions, equations, finding area of polygons, finding volume of rectangular prisms, and using nets to find surface area. Students also begin statistics concepts which include mean, mode, median, range, interquartile range, and mean absolute deviations. The Earth Science curriculum examines the Earth’s energy, atmosphere, weather, plate tectonics and the causes of earthquakes and volcanoes. Students conduct in-depth experiments in order to investigate the science behind global warming. Students also participate in the San Mateo County Science Fair by completing a long-range investigation on a matter of global scientific importance and by presenting their results to the school community. In technology, students learn how to design and print 3D objects. Using Audacity and Adobe Premiere, students also create their own audio poetry and movie trailers.
Each Day, a seventh grade student acquires the skills necessary for becoming an effective, successful, and lifelong learners through academic pursuits related to language arts, math, science, humanities, and the arts. In technology, students are introduced to C++ programming language. Using if conditions, loops and arrays, they begin to build applications such as grade books and temperature converters. The Social Studies curriculum includes hands-on activities such as mock trials, debating, and preparation for the Citizenship Test for Naturalization. 7th grade math students focus on ratios and proportional relationships, addition, subtraction, multiplication and division of integers and rational numbers, expressions, equations, statistics, probability, and formulas for geometry. The Language Arts program places a focus on the principles of effective and organized writing, acquisition of literary concepts, and the development of academic vocabulary. In studying Life Science, students in the 7th grade investigate cell structures and delve into genetics, evolution and the history of life on Earth. They explore the musculoskeletal and cardiopulmonary systems. In taking part in the San Mateo County Science Fair, students are encouraged to choose and explore questions related to key issues in health and nutrition. The Religion curriculum examines the life of Jesus Christ, and the rippling effect his teachings have had on society as a whole. Good Shepherd 7th graders will be presented with challenges which will equip them to become the problem solvers of the future.
During the eighth grade, students are devoting much of their time and energy preparing for high school. Developing self-confidence prior to graduation is an essential objective in the Eighth grade as well. Responsibility, community building, and leadership skills are developed in order to enhance the all around skills of each individual student. Math students study Algebra 1 concepts and fundamentals while utilizing common core math online programs such as www.ixl.com and www.Alek’s.com. In Language Arts, students focus on developing reading, writing, grammar, and vocabulary skills while placing an emphasis on social injustices from the past and how to relate these experiences to their roles as future leaders. The Eighth Grade Social Studies curriculum focuses on our nation’s history and government. A class trip to Washington, D.C. and New York will be the culmination of their studies in this content area. The Physical Science curriculum provides students with an in-depth study of motion, forces, density, the structure of the atom, the periodic table, chemical reactions, the chemistry of living systems, the solar system, and stars and galaxies. Students conduct hands-on experiments related to speed, velocity, and acceleration. Software is written that can measure and calculate variables which can be used in their physical science experiments. While participating in the San Mateo County Science Fair, students are encouraged to explore topics and questions related to physical phenomenon. For Technology, students are introduced to C++ programming language.