In sixth grade Bible class, we learn that the story of God’s people is our story. This course covers the Old Testament from Genesis to King Saul. Throughout the year we emphasize themes such as God is a faithful promise keeper, God can use anyone to fulfill His purposes, and Christians are called to influence their culture. Our units and Bible memory focus on how faith is a commitment to Jesus Christ and that it should lead to a life of gratitude and service. Our year-end justice unit points to how Christians are part of God’s plan for bringing justice to the world. Students learn about and have an opportunity to serve at various community agencies that are serving those who are often overlooked including the hungry, the homeless, and the unborn.
- Spiritual Portfolio – For the students’ spiritual portfolio, they write out their personal testimony stating their beliefs. They can include a life verse and favorite songs that have affected their faith journey.
- Capstone Project – At the end of sixth grade, students focus on the concept of justice. They explore topics such as homelessness, child labor, and hunger and reflect on how God can use Christians to be agents of change and renewal in His world. Our goal is to help students develop a heart for those facing oppression and injustice, to react with compassion and not judgment. Part of this week involves a service project to assist agencies that help the hurting such as In the Image and Dégagé in Grand Rapids.
LANGUAGE ARTS (WRITING AND READING)
In sixth grade language arts, we use writing, reading, speaking, and listening to learn to improve our communication skills and to better understand ourselves and our world. Language can be used for a variety of purposes – to describe, to inform, and to persuade. In our writing curriculum, teachers confer with the students as they work to guide them through the writing process. Our reading curriculum includes independent, whole class, and book club reading of a variety of genres.
The middle school uses the Big Ideas Math Program and it flows very nicely from the Math Expressions Program in K-5. Big Ideas Math also serves as a good transition to the programs used in local high schools. Big Ideas Math covers all of the basics that are required and does so with an approach that encourages student application and memorization. A detailed description of the program is available from your student’s teacher or the middle school office.
Building on the foundations laid in elementary school, students will “brush up” on contour drawing and human proportions, nearly become experts in applying the rules of composition through graphic design, and gain greater mastery of brush handling techniques while learning how to mix color families with paint. They will also hone sculpting skills while building a clay-slab constructs. All assignments are artist based, graded with rubrics, and involve written critiques based on self-learning goals and observations.
Students choosing band or orchestra will be meeting two days a week. Both are full year commitments and students will not be allowed to drop either band or orchestra once the year has begun.
Choir students will learn to use their vocal instrument to create a correct and pleasing singing sound. In addition to learning proper vocal production and technique, students will also learn music reading skills, sight-singing skills, and performance skills. Choir also offers opportunities for students to develop team building and leadership skills. This is a performance-based class. Participation in concert performances outside of regular class hours is required.
Music is a gift from God and is an important way we have of praising God. In general music, students will create an understanding, appreciation and life-long love for music. Our curriculum includes: the Baroque Period in music history, sight-reading, rhythm, instruments, world music and musical theater.
All students have P.E. classes two times a week for the entire school year. This co-ed program stresses participation, fitness, skills, knowledge, and proper attitudes. These are developed in the framework of taking care of the body and developing God-given abilities.
Sixth grade science consists mainly of the study of Life Sciences and Earth Science. We begin the year studying God’s amazing balance of how He created ecosystems and how we as humans need to care for these ecosystems. The rest of the year is learning about Physical Science concepts on energy transfer through potential and kinetic energy. The year ends with an Engineering/Robotics unit using Project Lead the Way curriculum.
Sixth grade social studies class begins in early history and travels through Ancient Egypt, Ancient Greece, and Ancient Rome to the Middle Ages. The second semester covers the geography and cultures of the Middle East, Europe, and Africa. We stress how God is Lord over all creation and how citizenship in His kingdom includes valuing all persons and cultures. To end the year, we focus on global issues and what Christians can do to promote justice for the oppressed.
In middle school Spanish classes students will acquire proper communication in real-life situations through the development of the four language areas: reading, writing, speaking, and listening. Middle school Spanish is designed to be exposure to the language and culture as taught in a high school Spanish level one class. Vocabulary and grammar from Realidades 1 is taught through hands-on, in-class experiences. Upon completion of the 3 years of Middle School Spanish at HCMS, students who are academically successful in Spanish will have the opportunity to test out of High School Spanish 1.