Middle School 6-8
Purposeful instruction, intensive skill development, and sound study habits drive the academic focus of the LTS Middle School. Attention to character, leadership skills, interpersonal relations, and accountability cultivate balance in the development of independence and interdependence in these important foundational years.
In this program, each student is assigned to an advisory team that is made up of 6th, 7th and 8th graders. Each advisory class will have 2 middle school teachers. This advisory team meets regularly throughout the school year and provides students and families with a support system to oversee each student’s academic performance and participation in Middle School.
It is important to note, this Advisory Program is not intended to replace the frequent, valuable student-to-teacher and parent-to-teacher interactions that make Lake Tahoe School an intimate academic environment.
The objectives of the Advisory Program are to:
- Assign a point person for each student with whom to communicate questions or concerns (e.g. Advisors help advisees compile and complete make-up work from missed School).
- Provide each student with an advocate with whom to discuss academics, social interactions, and personal issues (if need be).
- Review student progress regularly throughout the year and arrange and facilitate parent conferences and other meetings with students and/or parents and teachers (as necessary).
- Monitor each student’s academic performance and communicate with the Middle School Faculty as necessary.
- Provide a peer support system in order to cope with academic, social and personal challenges.
The structure of the Advisory Program is as follows:
- Advisory teams meet regularly during the week and a number of experiential workshops are scheduled throughout the year to provide hands-on learning opportunities.
- Through goal setting and reflection students evaluate their own academic performance throughout the year and play an integral part in determining the direction and content of meetings with advisors, teachers, and parents.
- Advisors may set up a meeting with advisees (or vice versa) and/or parents as situations arise.
Middle school English at Lake Tahoe School encompasses reading, classroom discussion, critical thinking, and ultimately clear and concise writing skills that can be adapted to a variety of subjects, genres and audiences. As the student progresses, the curriculum becomes appropriately and incrementally nuanced and complex.
6th Grade Language Arts
The sixth grader will review grammar and diagramming of sentences with both reexamination and teaching of the parts of speech and sentence structure. The student will read and discuss short stories, novels, poetry, and non-fiction with additional emphasis on vocabulary expansion. Writing assignments will be varied and may emphasize one major skill at a time.
7th Grade Language Arts
Seventh grade English will build upon the skills learned in the previous year and introduce more advanced grammar and writing skills. Literature will be critically discussed and analyzed and form the basis of longer themes and essays. Oral and group presentations and vocabulary enrichment will again be important.
8th Grade Language Arts
The eighth grade English class will read challenging works of literature and produce original, organized, thoughtful, and grammatically correct essays with enhanced vocabulary throughout. At this point, the student’s love of reading will have been appropriately nurtured and kindled, and the student’s ability to write clearly, correctly, and concisely will provide strong preparation for High School English and beyond.
The LTS Math Program blends traditional mathematics instruction and current educational best practices with math games and experiential learning in order to prepare students for high school and higher level mathematics. Students participate in the national Math League Contest, the Nevada Stock Market Game, and intra-school contests such as the Super Bowl Contest and class Stock Market Games. The LTS goal is for students to enjoy math, to be fluent with their skills, and to feel confident in their abilities. Topics covered by grade include:
Operations with Fractions, Negative Numbers, Proportional Reasoning - ratios, rates and percentages, Geometry, Statistics
Operations with Integers, Algebraic Thinking, Applying Rational Numbers in Multiple Contexts, Quantitative and Spatial Reasoning, Geometry, Statistics - populations and samples
Algebraic Thinking and Relationships: Linear equations, Systems of Equations, Functions, Quadratic Equations
6th Grade Earth Science
In 6th grade science we explore the complex and ever changing world that we live in. Students learn how the Earth came to look the way it does today and how it will change in the future. By looking at the Earth's surface, the tectonic forces beneath the ground, the oceans, and the atmosphere above us the 6th graders can see how each part of the world can affect the entire balance of the environment. Hands on experiments and projects help engage the creativity of students and to solidify vast ideas into concrete examples that can be referenced to throughout the year. Science can and should be fun!
7th Grade Life Science
In the 7th grade the students look to the molecular level at how life forms, grows, and changes over time as short as a minute or as long as a millennium. Students explore how cells form single cell organisms and how they can combine to form the most complex lifeforms on Earth. Life Science prepares the students for 9th grade biology by building a framework of understanding, study habits, and an adherence to the scientific method. Group projects and labs give students the opportunity to strengthen their understanding of the course material with hands-on demonstrations. Life Science is an opportunity for students to learn how to conduct long term experimentation and data collection.
8th Grade Physical Science
In 8th Grade Physical Science the students look at how everything we interact with is behaving on a molecular level. Beginning with what matter is and how energy is created and used we explore the complex relationships between the elements that occur in chemical reaction, motion, sounds, lights, and electricity. The 8th grade students are given more autonomy and trust to conduct experiments that showcase how things as chaotic as an exothermic reaction can be controlled and regulated when properly understood. This understanding is built by classroom discussions, self exploration, and project based learning throughout the year.
6th Grade Social Studies and Geography
Students will study the emergence of early civilizations by examining the major intellectual, political, economic, and social movements that influenced the development of people, societies, and cultures in the Ancient world. Students will also analyze the connections between geography, environmental issues, and historical events. Throughout the course, students will recognize and discuss the lasting influences of the Ancient world on our world today.
7th Grade Social Studies
Students will examine the geographical, religious, political, social, cultural, and technological changes in World History from 500 - 1789 AD. This course is designed to help students understand how civilizations, peoples, and societies develop and change over time. Students also study the rise of democratic ideas and how these ideas continue to influence the world today.
8th Grade Social Studies
Through the exploration of the United States and its diverse heritage, 8th-grade students will examine the history of the United States from exploration to the turn of the century. Students will study political, social, cultural, economic, and environmental aspects of the building of the United States in order to develop an understanding of themselves as members of American society. The 8th grade class will be introduced to the We The People program. We The People: The Citizen and the Constitution is an innovative course of instruction on the history and principles of the United States Constitution.
Certainly one of the main goals of middle school Spanish at Lake Tahoe School is to prepare students for the challenges of high school level Spanish courses that await. Most LTS students test out of first-year courses allowing them to take honors courses as upperclassmen. Without a doubt, daily language instruction at LTS provides students with the confidence and skill set to excel in an academic setting. Even more important than success in the classroom, however, is the understanding students have that learning a foreign language will unlock many opportunities in life and it can lead to many rich discoveries, both in self and the world around us. LTS Spanish is designed to engage, inform, and empower students to take the knowledge they have learned and use it to make the world a better place.
Each trimester, LTS offers various elective opportunities for students under the following categories. Please see examples of classes that have been offered in the past below.
Book Tastings, World Book Tours, Literature Circles, Comic-Con, Pin-Worthy Picks, Global Read Alouds, and any other reading-related thing you can imagine will be entertained in our Book Club. This class is for students who would like the opportunity to read more books and to share thoughts about their favorite and not-so-favorite choices with each other.
Students will be introduced to the fundamentals of running a small business, including viability analysis, planning, budgeting, accounting, marketing, business ethics, challenges, competition, and product life cycles. The first several weeks of the class will cover the initial steps in starting a business, then budgeting, promotion, and production. Midway through the trimester, students will break into teams and start their own micro businesses and rapidly implement what they have learned, adding new elements in the process.
This class is intended to provide students with an opportunity to explore and learn about student government, student council, and leadership. After reviewing past procedures, programs, and activities, students will create a student government handbook, conduct elections, and generate a calendar of events for the year. In the second and third trimester, lunch meetings will be held weekly for elected officials and representatives.
Sculpt. Glaze. Fire. This elective introduces students to basic hand-building techniques of clay, such as scoring, slipping, and slab building, as well as traditional glazing techniques. The elements of form and space will be explored through a variety of 3-dimensional assignments. Individual and group critiques are used throughout the course to evaluate processes as well as products. Students create and complete themed projects and participate in a school community-based art show.
Broadway is coming to LTS! If you are interested in performing on stage, learning about staging, sets, and production, you won't want to miss this exciting opportunity.
Rock Band is available to instrumentalists and vocalists who want to improve their ability to perform music, increase music skill, improvise, compose music, and have fun! A basic playing ability and basic musicianship is recommended. Students do not have to be able to read traditionally notated music. The class focuses on learning and performing rock music in an ensemble-based context and will conclude with the performance of a live rock concert in front of a live audience!
Have you ever needed to sew on a button? Repair your favorite jeans? Make a gift? If "sew", then this is the class for you. Join for a trimester of needle and thread techniques, pattern pinning and cutting, along with some sewing machine basics and tricks. We will put all your talents to test by creating a final masterpiece for you to take home and treasure foreveror until the stitching wears out.
Conditioning, Games, and Life Skills
The focus of the conditioning portion of this elective will be on improving the strength and balance of our legs and core muscles using isometrics, leg exercises (lunges, jumps, squats, etc.), and yoga for strength and stretching. Students will also do some light cardio. Other days, students will improve their thinking abilities and life skills by playing board and card games that utilize critical thinking, reasoning, and memorization while improving the following life skills: planning, problem solving, reflection, decision making, logic, emotional intelligence, cooperation, sportsmanship, learning from mistakes, etc. Games will include chess, poker, Settlers of Catan, Monopoly, and more!
Students explore the fun world of cooking. The main focus will be on instruction in basic cooking skills. Students will learn about nutrition, practice balancing a budget, plan menus, shop for ingredients, and cook meals together. Guest chefs will visit to lead cooking lessons.
If you're looking to unravel the intricacies of the mind or just want to find out what makes your friends tick, this introduction to psychology is for you. You will gain insights into human nature, understand yourself better, and make sense of individual and group behaviors.
Computer Aided Design
CAD is used for everything from mechanical engineering to architecture to designing clothing. For anyone destined for a career in engineering, CAD is an essential skill. Engineering can encompass electronics, mechanical engineering, product design, map making and more.
Students will learn how to create digital artwork using state of the art software. Digital design is a desirable skill in the workplace for everything from advertising to web design to graphics for software products and video animation.
Java Programming for Middle School is a course designed to introduce students to a wide array of general programming concepts with the Java Programming Language as the vehicle. Students will learn about language syntax, logic, flow control, algorithms, file access, programming and debugging techniques as well as the use of the NetBeans IDE (Integrated Programming Environment).