Grades 7 – 8: Arcola Intermediate School
The English program at Arcola is aligned with the Pennsylvania Core State Standards. The curriculum program goal is to have students achieve high academic standards in the language arts: reading independently, reading critically, analyzing and responding to literature, writing in various forms for a variety of audiences, producing compositions of high quality, speaking proficiently, and using research skills. Daily lessons focus on students becoming critical thinkers, effective communicators, analytical readers, and informed consumers of media.
The focus of the mathematics courses in grades seven and eight is to provide a cohesive, balanced, student-centered mathematics program aligned to the PA Common Core standards. This sequential program integrates algebra, geometry, measurement, logical reasoning, probability, statistics, discrete mathematics, and function strands throughout each course. Lessons center on using the Eight Common Core Mathematical Practice Standards to develop procedural fluency and conceptual understanding, while creating an absorbing learning experience that can be applied to everyday life. Students will cultivate and expand their skills through practice, inquiry, evaluation, collaboration, and problem solving. These endeavors seek to convey deep, crucial content understanding, so students are challenged at a level that meets their own mathematical needs.
The Arcola science curriculum is aligned to the Pennsylvania Standards for Science and Technology, the Pennsylvania Standards for Environment and Ecology, and the Pennsylvania Science Curriculum Framework (which is based on the Next Generation Science Standards). Topics addressed in Grade 7 are Structure and Function of Organisms; Heredity; Natural Selection; and Ecological Behavior and Systems. Grade 8 topics include Structure, Properties, and Interaction of Matter and Energy; Forms, Sources, Conversion, and Transfer of Energy; Principles of Force and Motion; and Waves. Students are engaged in the nature of science via activities that require reasoning and analysis as they apply knowledge to make predictions, draw inferences, develop models, plan and carry out investigations, analyze data, solve problems, and construct explanations. Students are exposed to hands-on experiences through project based learning, on-line simulations, and labs. Students also visit the planetarium to support and expand their science learning.
The Social Studies program is a comprehensive program which integrates the disciplines of history, geography, economics and citizenship education aligned with the Pennsylvania Common Core Standards. Instruction with our curriculum utilizes critical thinking and inquiry-based learning. Teachers guide students to examine issues, past and present, from a variety of perspectives and resources. They model and encourage the close reading of authentic primary documents. The aim of social studies is the promotion of civic competence—the knowledge, intellectual processes, and democratic dispositions required of students to be active and engaged participants in public life. High expectations for writing and projects demonstrating mastery of identified skills and knowledge are vital to the success of our students.
Technology Education courses provide hands-on learning experiences along with skill development fostering the understanding of technology by the student. Students develop insight and understanding of our technological society and the current emerging trends that will affect them. By practicing a variety of methods and processes, students develop the ability to evaluate the quality of finished products as well as develop work ethics in the timely completion of projects. Beginning in grade 7 students learn the proper use of tools, processes, and resources of technological and industrial systems. Technology Education is an academic setting in which success depends on the application of learned skills, cooperation and the social interaction among students. Students planning careers in engineering, the sciences, management, sales, or general employment can benefit from a series of Technology Education courses. Communication courses and drafting courses are particularly valuable for students considering engineering, graphic design, photography, and architecture.
Methacton’s World Language Department follows the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL) standards, which promote the belief that competence in more than one language and culture enables people to develop lifelong skills related to communication across cultures; insight to personal language and culture; demonstration of greater awareness of self, of other cultures, and relationships to those cultures; ability to access additional bodies of knowledge; and fuller participation in the global community and marketplace. As a result, our World Language department incorporates effective strategies, assessment procedures and technologies to achieve this goal. Our primary resources for World Language are carefully selected to support a curriculum that focuses on concepts and competencies related to culture, reading, writing, speaking, and listening skills. World Language classes offered in grades 8 through 12 are German, French, and Spanish.