Middle School Program

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Middle School Grades 5-7

The curriculum for grades 5–8 is designed to help students develop academic and organizational skills that will prepare them for the demanding BASIS Independent grades 9–12 curriculum. We recognize that the abilities to organize time, manage and control oneself are not innate: we must all learn these skills. Our middle school teachers focus on this every day and aim to fine-tune these intrinsic skills.

In a very real sense, 8–12 program. By introducing high-level content standards here, we ensure students are exposed to these concepts early and often and have mastered the material by the time they enroll in Honors and AP-level courses. Our curriculum in these grades is designed to provide one of the most advanced private middle school programs available in the world.

Learn more about our program by attending an informational event.

Grade 5 Curriculum Detail

Math: Introduction to Pre-Algebra  
  • Spiraled and incremental curriculum with daily practice of both new and old topics
  • Focus on computation/basic math facts, word problems, fractions/decimals, fundamental geometry
  • Introduction to algebra
  • Introduction to literary analysis using texts from multiple genres
  • Composition in varied formats
  • Traditional grammar students support composition and reading comprehension
Physical Geography
  • Natural phenomena, geologic time scales, and earth system interactions
  • Studies of human geography, including population analysis, cultural trade, and political boundaries
  • History of mapping technologies and applications
Introduction to Science
  • Practice with scientific methodology as it applies to critical thinking
  • Introduction to biology, chemistry, physics, and astronomy
  • Laboratory methodologies and analysis of data and results 
  • Focus on historical understanding of ancient cultures
  • Analysis of foundations of western civilization through narrative, text, and art
  • Objectives often integrated with English, Latin, and art classes for interdisciplinary learning
  • Broad study of Latin roots, prefixes, and suffixes to support vocabulary building
  • Roman culture and history supply key texts and points of interest
  • Latin grammar as a foundation for romance language acquisition
Visual arts 
  • Study of art through history and development of media, technique, and style
  • Principles of design, color, shape
  • Collaboration and discussion skills enhanced in various projects
  • Performance of vocal and instrumental foundations in group settings
  • Rhythm notation, and composition of important periods in musical history
  • Listening skills practiced in classroom and community settings  

Grades 6–8 Curriculum Detail


Grade 6: Pre-Algebra

Grade 7: Algebra 1/Geometry

Grade 8: Algebra 2/Geometry


Grade 6–8: Biology, Chemistry, and Physics (all three each year)

Social Sciences

Grade 6: World History (Pre-History to Enlightenment)

Grade 7: U.S. History

Grade 8: World History II, Economics

English/Language Arts

Grades 6–8: English

Foreign Language

Grade 6: Latin

Grades 7–8: French, Latin, Mandarin, or Spanish; AP optional

Fine Arts, PE, and Electives

Grade 6: PE, plus Music, Art, or Drama (choice of one)

Grade 7: Music, Art, Drama, or PE (choice of one)

Grade 8: General electives*, AP elective, or post-AP elective

*Minimum of one fine art elective required.

Grade 8 Curriculum Detail

Grade 8 acts as a transitional year for students who have completed the BASIS Independent Middle School program and are preparing to enter high school. These grade 8 students continue to build their knowledge base with a wide variety of rigorous courses, including a full year of introductory-level Economics and the chance to enroll in advanced electives like Environmental Science, Computer Science or Psychology, which are aligned with the AP curriculum.

The Learning Enrichment Academic Program (LEAP)

Although BASIS Independent Schools provide a rigorous and accelerated program for all students, there are some students who are ready to move even faster in certain disciplines. In order to give these students the chance to move ahead to more challenging courses, and in order to further develop the advanced nature of the BASIS Independent Curriculum, we provide LEAP courses in select grade 8 core disciplines: Science and English. LEAP students must apply for entry to the course, obtain a recommendation from a teacher of that particular subject, and maintain an acceptable overall academic record.