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Humanities:

Humanities is an integration of language arts and social studies. The emphasis is to provide students with a rich, literary based curriculum which includes a variety of texts, both fiction and nonfiction and integrates reading and writing daily. Class novel studies, combined with a focused independent reading program, develop comprehension and analytical skills, as well as an advanced vocabulary and a deeper understanding of grammar and sentence structure. Utilizing reading and writing strategies gained via a workshop model based on the Columbia Teachers College Reading and Writing Project; students engage in content-rich lessons which enhance their abilities as readers, writers, and thinkers. Students write narratives, informational, and persuasive essays displaying his or her ability to independently transfer strategies gained in the workshop. Content areas include Medieval history, the Renaissance, the Reformation, and the Age of Exploration. Class literature studies include Beowulf, The Outsiders, and Ender’s Game, as well as units on classic short stories and poetry. A rigorous vocabulary and grammar program are integrated within the novel studies and written work.

Science:

Seventh-grade science focuses on the study of biological science. This laboratory science course investigates the relationship between structure and function from molecules to organisms and systems, the interaction of biotic and abiotic components of the environment and mechanisms that maintain continuity and lead to changes in populations over time. This course also emphasizes internal and external anatomical structures and their functions, the processes of living things, the importance of biodiversity and changes in life forms over time. Students explore these concepts through hands-on investigations, discussion and direct instruction. In an effort to prepare students for advanced science coursework in high school, students learn to write comprehensive lab reports and utilize a high school level textbook.

Mathematics:

Seventh-grade students are enrolled in either Math 2 (grade level), Pre-Algebra or Algebra

Math 2:

In the first semester, Math 2 builds upon previous concepts taught in Math 1 and then leads students through basic algebraic, geometric, and statistical procedures in the second semester. The major goals of this course are to analyze proportional relationships; calculate percents in real-world applications; extend previous understandings of operations with the new twist of positive and negative integers; extend operations with fractions by including positive and negative numbers; introduce algebraic expressions to generate equivalent expressions; use properties of equality in algebraic expressions; solve one- and two-step algebraic equations and inequalities; draw, construct, and describe geometrical figures and describe the relationships between them; Solve real-life and mathematical problems involving angles measure, area, surface area, and volume; investigate, develop, and use probability models; and use random sampling to draw inferences about a population. Students will develop problem-solving skills to apply these problems to real-life circumstances. Students will use manipulatives and scientific calculators as a learning tool. Successful completion of this course will prepare students for Pre-Algebra.

Pre-Algebra:

This course centers on reinforcing and expanding upon the mathematical skills taught in general mathematics with additional advanced computation, with an emphasis on Algebraic concepts. A major goal of this course is to use beginning algebra to compute with positive and negative exponents, simplify monomials, simplify expressions, solve equations and inequalities, and utilize both algebra and graphing as a representation of linear functions and systems of equations. Students will additionally further develop and solidify the concepts of integers, rational numbers, ratios, proportions, percents, powers, roots, statistics and probability. Students will also be introduced to congruence, similarity, and transformations in the coordinate plane, as well as extending their knowledge of volume and surface area. Students will develop and expand problem-solving skills, both creatively and analytically, to solve word problems and apply it to real-world applications.

Algebra:

The Algebra curriculum allows students to make connections, discover relationships, figure out what strategies can be used to solve problems, and explain their thinking. Students are challenged to develop 21st-century skills such as critical thinking and making real life connections while engaging with exciting material within STEM related fields. The curriculum is aligned with the Common Core standards, emphasizing a depth of mathematical reasoning skills. Students will learn to write and simplify algebraic expressions, perform all operations with integers, solve equations and inequalities, radical functions, exponential functions, quadratic expressions and polynomials. Algebra students will also cover a unit on Geometry, Trigonometry and Data Analysis.

Spanish:

This advanced level Spanish class, which meets twice a week, will focus on developing and refining listening, speaking, reading and writing skills. The main goal is to demonstrate a greater proficiency in verb conjugations, conversational Spanish and a better understanding and appreciation of the Hispanic culture. Projects include biographical poems and storybook writing.

Jewish Studies:

Seventh-grade students explore major events of Jewish history that impacted world Jewry. The students learn about Dreyfus Affair and the pogroms in Europe during the late 19th century. Additionally, the seventh-grade Jewish studies class discusses the rise of the Zionist movement and the events that led to the Holocaust.

Holiday celebrations and a closer look at the mitzvot and traditions of each of the holidays is an integral part of the Jewish studies curriculum. Students who celebrate their Bar or Bat Mitzvah are invited to read from the Torah every Thursday.

Hebrew:

Our seventh graders progress to advanced levels of the Chaverim B’Ivrit reading series. This curriculum is based on the most current understanding of language acquisition in children. Chaverim B'Ivrit develops active language production in children by treating Hebrew as a living language. Through age-appropriate stories, conversations, poems, songs, journals, and many other child-centered activities, this unique curriculum pays special attention to the beyond-the-classroom interests and needs of students, allowing learners to transfer and apply their learning in new contexts and situations. Moreover, Pardes students learn about Jewish values and holidays using modern Hebrew reading, writing and conversational skills that are enhanced each unit.