Junior High Curriculum Overview
The junior high teachers foster an atmosphere of respect and integrity for our junior high students, which is clearly evident when you meet them. The Discipline with Purpose school-wide program is employed to encourage responsibility and respect in our students. The last DWP skill of service to others is particularly emphasized in seventh and eighth grades.
Students also attend enrichment classes taught by certified teachers for Spanish, library, STEM, and P.E.
Seventh and eighth grade are years of growing responsibility in preparation for high school; they are the bridge years between junior high and high school. Students transition between various rooms for instruction; they learn to study, take notes, and are fully responsible for their learning. They are taught and challenged to advocate for themselves.
At St. John Bosco, students are explicitly taught the Student Learning Expectations, known as LASER Skills: Life-Long Learners, Active Catholics, Self-Aware Individuals, Effective Communicators and Responsible Citizens. Developed on campus from Pre-K through 8th grade, mastery of each skill is expected upon completion of junior high. They are defined as what students should know, understand, value, and achieve by graduation.
Student planners are mandatory in seventh and eighth grade. Regular checks occur to ensure students have mastered the necessary habit of recording both short- and long-term assignments. In junior high, students practice the skills of goal-setting and time management, life-long skills that create independent, efficient and successful young men and women.
The junior high team is dedicated to educating the whole child. Students are taught to strive for academic excellence and are instilled with the lifelong joy of serving others, all within the traditions of our Catholic faith. Through weekly junior high team meetings, weekly newsletters, Google Classroom and RenWeb (electronic grade book portal), consistent weekly communications between junior high teachers and parents, the primary educators, result in a complete curriculum. Our students routinely test into honors courses and our alumni report being highly prepared for high school.
In addition to a highly-qualified faculty and staff, students are blessed with numerous resources including SmartBoards, one-to-one Chromebooks, Z-Space, Google Classroom, and opportunities to take curriculum-specific field trips. To enhance differentiated instruction, students utilize Accelerated Reader and IXL online learning systems.
Junior high teaches based on Diocese of Phoenix Curriculum Guidelines that include:
- Textbook: Blest Are We
- Scripture study
- Church structure, the universal church
- Gospel Value (8th – Trust in God)
- Gospel Value (7th – Compassion)
- Social Justice
- Church History
- Old Testament and New Testament Scripture
- Coordinated service hours
- Called to Protect for Youth
- Support the Adopt-a-Family program
- Participate in spiritual activities and prayer
- Adopt a Godchild from Nuestros Pequeños Hermanos
- Host class Masses, Adoration in Chapel, Reconciliation
- Textbook: Prentice Hall’s Literature: Timeless Voices, Timeless Themes and Writing and Grammar – Bronze (7) and Silver (8)
- Sadlier-Oxford Vocabulary Workshop Level B (7) Level C (8)
- Literature-based curriculum
- Accelerated Reader supplementary reading program
- Novel studies focusing on literary analysis and literary elements
- Supplementary vocabulary program
- Easy Grammar emphasis on: Parts of speech, Sentence diagramming and Issues in writing
- Writing styles used in high school (Organization)
- 6 +1 Traits of Writing Focus
- The writing process (prewriting, drafting, revising, editing, and publishing)
- Writing applications (analytical, persuasive, expository and narrative)
- Editing & journaling experiences
- Textbook: Prentice Hall’s America-History of Our Nation (7 & 8)
- The social studies curriculum focuses on an in-depth study of American history spanning seventh and eighth grade years.
- Topics include:
- Beginnings of American History
- The New Republic
- The Nation Expands and Changes
- Civil War and Reunion
- An Age of Industry
- Moving Toward the Future
Our math curriculum is aligned to the Diocesan Standards.
Connected Mathematics Project (CMP)
Connected Mathematics is a problem-based curriculum that consists of two courses. Student voice is central in learning and lessons consist of Launch, Explore and Summarize phases. Students will typically solve one problem per day.
CMP is aligned with IXL. IXL will be used for homework practice of skills learned.
7th Grade Mathematics
- Textbook: Connected Mathematics Project Grade 7
- Generalizing and Using Properties of Geometric Shapes
- Operations with rational numbers (integers, fractions, decimals, mixed numbers)
- Developing Proportional Reasoning in the Context of Similarity (Scale Drawings)
- Developing Proportional Reasoning in the Context of Number (Quantities)
- Linear Relationships, Expressions, and Equations
- Developing Proportional Relationships in the Context of Probability
- Three-Dimensional Measurement
- Making Comparisons and Predictions – More Proportionality
8th Grade Mathematics
- Textbook: Connected Mathematics Project Grade 8
- Linear Functions and Bivariate Data
- The Pythagorean Theorem
- Exponential Expressions and Exponential Functions, Non-Linear Functions
- Quadratic Functions, Distributive Property and Equivalent Expressions*
- Exploring Transformation
- Reasoning with Equivalent Expressions and Equations
- Systems of Linear Equations and Inequalities
- An Algebra/Function Summary*
Units with * are considered Algebra I curriculum and may be taught depending on time/interest level of students and their families.
- Textbook: McGraw-Hill Integrated Science (7/8)
- Introduce (7) and develop (8) the scientific process by using claim, evidence, and reasoning skills.
- Observe, collect data, and generate hypotheses (7)
- Study states of matter (7)
- Analyze light, sound, and electricity (7)
- Study topics of oceanography, earth science and human body skeletons (7)
- Evaluate interactions in living world (7)
- Emphasize development and analysis of conclusions (8)
- Observe and discuss chemical reactions (8)
- Geological Time (8)
- Synthesize knowledge in content area (8)
- Utilize reliable sources, linking real world science.(8)
- Study topics of forces and motion (Newton’s Laws), changes through time and evolution, and sun and moon systems (8)
- Model and integrate scientific concepts; utilize engineering processes by developing, using, and revising models to describe, test, and predict more abstract phenomena and design systems.
- Scheduled classes 2 times a week
- Create videos, web pages, 3D models and computer programs
- Develop internet research skills
- Utilize WeVideo, TinkerCAD and other software
- Research applications in all subjects
- Receive instruction in spreadsheet, presentation, database and word processing tools
- Use of Google applications and resources
- Read more information about our STREAM program
- TPRS: Teaching Proficiency through Reading & Storytelling, foreign language acquisition curriculum.
- Knowledge of grammar rules in particular; gender, noun-adjective and subject-verb agreement and application.
- Expand knowledge of verb conjugation to include verbs ser, estar and regular present tense verbs.
- Gospel Value focus is equality.