Our Middle School Program

Middle school serves as a transition between elementary school and high school, and choosing the right middle school for your child is a critical decision that can shape their academic and personal development during the formative years of adolescence. We recognize and address middle schoolers’ unique needs, preparing students for high school by providing rigorous instruction with built-in and pull-out support. We also understand that middle schoolers often need help with organization, and daily What I Need (WIN) time helps students develop study skills. 

Tremendous social growth also takes place during middle school. Daily recess time allows DaVinci middle schoolers the opportunity to work off their energy and socialize with friends. Middle school overnight field trips allow students to create strong bonds with their classmates and teachers. These field trips are connected to what students are already studying in class, and many middle schoolers identify these trips as the highlight of their time in middle school.

Middle School Curriculum

As a public school, DaVinci Academy’s curriculum is guided by the Minnesota Academic Standards, which detail expectations for what students should learn and be able to do during each year of their schooling. The Minnesota Department of Education writes the standards, which you can view by visiting the Minnesota Academic Standards (K-12) website.

In order to develop “lifelong learners who make meaningful contributions to society” (DaVinci Vision), our middle school language arts curriculum focuses on reading literature that relates to students’ daily lives while also teaching them about lives that are different from their own. By providing scaffolded and differentiated instruction, our students become critical thinkers and passionate readers. We focus on equipping students with the reading, writing, and speaking skills needed for success.

Math in Focus: Singapore Math, used in grades 6-7, empowers students to develop critical mathematical thinking skills. Math in Focus recognizes problem-solving as central to learning in math class and uses a three-step learning model, moving from the concrete to visual representation and then on to the more abstract. Students are taught not only to know how to do something but also why it works. 

Holt Algebra 1 is used in 8th grade.

Integrated iScience encourages students to relate the science concepts they learn to the world around them. Inquiry-based 5 E (Engage, Explore, Explain, Elaborate, and Evaluate) lessons provide active, hands-on explorations. 

The social studies curricula follows the Core Knowledge sequence as well as the Minnesota standards for social studies. Northern Lights, which focuses on Minnesota’s past and present, is used in 6th grade.

Our specialist courses utilize many different curricula resources and units created by DaVinci. Our middle school specialist courses are as follows:

  • Physical education
  • Art
  • Spanish
  • Technology

Our music elective courses utilize many different curricula resources and units created by DaVinci. Middle school students can choose from the following electives:

  • Choir
  • Show choir
  • Band
  • Jazz band
  • General Music
  • Orchestra

Character Strong helps students become thoughtful, healthy, and kind human beings. The middle school curriculum focuses on teaching healthy habit development, social awareness strategies, and empathy-building techniques.

Curriculum Supplements

DaVinci Academy places a strong emphasis on utilizing curriculum supplements to enhance the educational experience for students. These supplements play a crucial role in our approach to education by complementing, enriching, or extending the core curriculum. Our Instructional Leadership team collaborates closely with our teaching teams to identify the most suitable materials that align with the specific learning needs of individual students or classes. Our dedicated educators are empowered with the autonomy to incorporate these resources into their teaching when they deem it necessary to support instruction effectively.

To ensure that families are well-informed and engaged in this process, we encourage them to attend open houses and parent conferences, stay updated through regular school communications, and to reach out to teachers or administrators whenever they have questions or concerns. This collaborative approach to curriculum supplementation at DaVinci Academy aims to provide a well-rounded and tailored education that meets the diverse needs of our students.

Listed below are just a few of the numerous curriculum supplements utilized at DaVinci Academy:

IXL is an online educational platform that provides adaptive learning content for students in language arts and math, allowing them to practice and master skills at their own pace through interactive exercises and assessments. IXL differentiates for each student based on his/her skill level and needs.

Kesler Science resources are utilized to enrich the learning experience of McGraw Hill iScience, providing educators with a robust set of tools to complement their science instruction. Within the Kesler Science resources, teachers can access a wide array of materials, including assessments, labs, modified work, modified notes, PowerPoints, readings, videos, and more, enhancing their ability to create engaging and interactive science lessons for students.

Membean is an online adaptive vocabulary platform used to extend vocabulary instruction in middle school language arts by employing higher-order thinking skills rather than memorization. It differentiates for each student based on their skill level and needs, offering personalized vocabulary instruction and assessments to enhance language proficiency in an engaging and effective manner.