Curriculum

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Middle School (grades 7-8)

Middle school is a developmental period when young people are absorbed in defining themselves and beginning to explore the world beyond their families. Students investigate new courses, new ideas, new friends, and a new school community.

Crossroads College Preparatory School teachers prepare middle school students for high school by blending traditional content with active, participatory learning, and by encouraging students to move from logical, concrete thinking to abstract reasoning in all areas of study.

The middle school academic program provides:

  • Analytical study of literature and social studies
  • Challenging and flexible study of mathematics
  • Hands-on, exploratory study of biological, chemical, earth and environmental sciences
  • Beginning Mandarin and Spanish, with an emphasis on speaking the language

The faculty fosters students’ academic success with the following offerings:

  • Exploratory courses — including art, drama, music, and computers — are designed to provide middle school students with an introduction to areas that may be unfamiliar to them but are nevertheless an integral part of their education
  • Cooperative investigation is a vital part of the program through the practice of effective communication, conflict resolution, tolerance and acceptance of differences, and balancing of individual and community needs
  • Essential study skills are taught such as note-taking, outlining, test preparation, organizing homework, and prioritizing time
7th Grade Classes
  • English: Fundamentals of English
  • Social Studies: World Cultures
  • Science: Earth and Environmental Science
  • Mathematics: Algebra 1A
  • Foreign Language: Spanish A or Mandarin A
  • Explore Classes: Music, Foundations of Art, Computer Applications, Drama
  • Physical Education or Team Sports
  • Extra-Curricular (Activity) Class
8th Grade Classes
  • English: American Literature 8
  • Social Studies: Intro to American History
  • Science: Introduction to Biology and Chemistry
  • Mathematics: Algebra 1B
  • Foreign Language: Spanish B or Mandarin A
  • Explore Classes: Music, Foundations of Art, Computer Applications, Drama
  • Physical Education/Team Sports
  • Extra-curricular (Activity) Class

Upper School (grades 9-12)

The upper school academic program emphasizes mastery of rich content in the humanities, natural sciences, and social sciences. Individual progress is measured by the student’s refinement of skills and ability to demonstrate his or her understanding of the material studied. Faculty members work closely with each student to hone the following skills:

  • Writing logically, precisely, and substantively
  • Taking accurate notes and assimilating diverse materials
  • Substantiating one’s opinion in oral discussion
  • Listening actively and speaking effectively in class
  • Pursuing the complexities of a subject through questioning and additional study
  • Problem solving independent of a teacher
  • Mastering the processes necessary to perform well on various types of tests and exams
  • Applying what has previously been learned to new tasks
  • Effectively communicating original ideas
  • Meeting deadlines and completing tasks thoroughly
  • Taking pride in one’s accomplishments including the successful selection of a college of one’s choice
9th Grade Program
  • English: World Literature
  • Social Studies: World Civilizations
  • Science: Physics
  • Mathematics: Algebra I or Geometry
  • Foreign Language: Spanish I or II, Mandarin 1
  • Freshman Seminar and Physical Education
  • 1 Elective
  • Extra-curricular (Activity) Class
10th Grade Program
  • English: Classics of World Literature II
  • Social Studies: Modern World History
    (Optional:) Prep for AP World History Exam
  • Science: Chemistry
  • Mathematics: Geometry or Algebra II/Trigonometry
  • Foreign Language: Spanish II or III; French III; Mandarin I or II
  • Art in Perspective
  • 1 Elective
  • Extra-curricular (Activity) Class
11th Grade Program
  • English: American Literature
  • Social Studies: United States History, AP US History, AP Psychology
  • Science: Biology (required), AP Environmental Science, Advanced Chemistry, Advanced Physics, Eco-Act
  • Mathematics: Algebra II/Trigonometry or Pre-Calculus
  • Foreign Language: Spanish III or IV; French III, IV, or V; Mandarin I, II, or III
  • 1 or 2 Electives
  • Extra-curricular (Activity) Class
12th Grade Program
  • English: AP Literature; AP Language and Composition; Literature and Language
  • Social Studies: Comparative Philosophy, AP Psychology, AP World History
  • Science: Advanced Chemistry, Advanced Physics, AP Biology, Eco-Act
  • Mathematics: Pre-Calculus, AP Calculus AB, AP Calculus BC, AP Statistics, Statistics, Introduction to College Algebra
  • Foreign Language: French IV or V; Spanish IV or V; Mandarin I, II, or III
  • Fine Art: AP Studio Art, AP Art History

Electives

Students may elect one course a year (or two one-semester courses) with which to expand their scholarship. These courses include classes in the arts, computer, health, and physical education as well as additional courses in social studies, English, math, science, and foreign language. Electives fulfill requirements for graduation.

Extra Curricular (Activity) Classes

As part of the regular school day, a wide range of extra-curricular “activity” classes is offered from which students choose according to their interest. All students in grades seven through eleven are required to take an activity as they use their imaginations to discover their potential. Seniors may elect these classes according to their interests and schedules. Offerings vary from year to year. Recent activity offerings have included:

  • A Cappella Singing
  • A Night at the Improv
  • Amnesty International
  • Archery
  • Bicycle Repair
  • Chess
  • Classic Film Studies
  • Club Francais du Cinema
  • Cooking
  • Chorus
  • CurrentNewz: School Web News
  • Cycling for Fitness
  • Dance Team
  • Engineers Without Borders
  • Fencing
  • Football
  • IDEA (Invention Design & Engineering Activities)
  • Improvisation
  • Japanese Culture and Media
  • Knitting
  • Middle School Art
  • Middle School Band
  • Middle School Collage Explorations
  • Middle School Robotics
  • Mock Trial/Law Club
  • Open Art Studio
  • Prom
  • Racquetball
  • SAT/ACT Prep
  • School WebNews
  • Science Fair Lab Support
  • Singing & Songwriting
  • Social Justice
  • Speech and Debate
  • Test Kitchen: The Art and Science of Cooking
  • Ultimate Frisbee
  • Yearbook
  • Yoga