In their capstone year at St. Paul, sixth grade students truly partner with faculty and administration in executing the mission of the school, serving and leading their peers in meaningful ways. This is a complex year where students ponder the significance of what they are able to accomplish and how to live in a way that truly honors the Lord.
Bookended by the overnight leadership retreat in August and the week-long DC trip in May, the sixth grade year is saturated with experiences that stretch our students to think more critically about their specific gifts and skills and the ways they can grow as learners, as friends, and as agents of change in the world.
While the academic and athletic opportunities at hand demand poise and thoughtful execution, all eyes begin looking to 7th grade and preparing for the significant transition that awaits them in the months ahead.
Sixth grade students continue to connect the dots in the New Testament by learning what it means to be a follower of Christ in their day-to-day lives. This topical curriculum draws from works of fiction, fairy tales, biographies, sermons, film, and the Scriptures. It helps students grow in spiritual disciplines, such as Scripture study, prayer, worship, and service. It provides students with opportunities to examine basic Christian theology, such as sin, salvation, sanctification, resurrection, and heaven. Students are taught their responsibilities as members of the body of Christ, such as loving and serving the Church, growing in community with other believers, and sharing the gospel.
Students utilize well-developed reading comprehension skills to delve into a deeper analysis of literature. Newberry-winning novels are the platform used to compare different types of literature, to analyze plot lines and characters, and to engage in rich discussion on topics such as faith, perseverance, courage, and justice. Writing continues to be directly related to literature study and focuses on refinement and further mastery of the five paragraph essay. Essays include a compare and contrast of characters, composition of a personal narrative, and an argumentative/opinion piece. Students further their study of vocabulary, grammar, and mechanics, and they practice the application of each in their writing.
Sixth grade math changes slightly to a curriculum called Pre-Transition Mathematics. Developed by the University of Chicago School Mathematics Project which authored Everyday Math, Pre-Transition Math bridges the gap between elementary school and the curriculum that our sixth graders will encounter as they matriculate into seventh grade. Building on a strong foundation established in the lower grades, Algebra is integrated throughout the program as a way of describing generalizations, as a language for formulas, and as an aid in solving simple equations. In the classroom students are encouraged to not only solve problems, but also to be able to verbalize the process.
Sixth grade science is a lab-based program that focuses on classification, cells, bacteria, monera, protista, and fungi, the plant kingdom, the animal kingdom, human body systems, heredity, and properties and structure of matter. Students embrace opportunities for dissection and other labs, learning essential skills of observation and analysis that conclude in a formal written lab report. Two research projects challenge students to identify trustworthy websites, to collect and sort through information, and to produce a creative and informative finished product. The final unit of Sixth Grade Science introduces students to physics, providing a window into the intersection of math and science.
Students are introduced to world history in fifth and sixth grade. Sixth grade focuses on the time period from the Roman Empire until the discovery of America, including the Middle Ages, the Renaissance, the Reformation, and the Age of Discovery. Students review basic map and geography skills, practice research skills, grow in their understanding of the timeline of history and are exposed to different cultures.
What is your favorite thing about sixth grade?
"I love 6th grade jobs because you are a leader and are able to help around the campus and it is fun! It prepares us for later in life. Walking JKers is great because you get to see their smiles.”
"I have enjoyed learning about our immune system because it shows how great God really is."
“We have a lot more freedom, but with freedom comes responsibility. You have to take charge of your own actions.”
THE ADVENTURES OF SIXTH GRADE
Leading the school by: reading the daily devotion, walking junior kindergarten students to their classrooms, managing campus recycling, updating birthday board, helping in the Academy office, working in the Saint Shop, and running adopt-a-spot campus beautification program
Producing a cell mitosis video
Choosing the school's theme verse at the sixth grade leadership retreat
Spending five days in our nation's capital
Meeting representatives from next-level schools at Choice Morning
Visiting schools to consider for seventh grade
Completing the Chronicles of Narnia series by C.S. Lewis, as well as Hatchet, The Bronze Bow, and Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry
Celebrating Pi Day
Hearing from Trinity Forum speakers
Experiencing new elective classes each semester
... and many more adventures!