Beginning with Sixth Grade, the middle school curriculum aims more strongly at enhancing the reasoning capacities of students, encouraging their transition into becoming critical thinkers able to dialogue with and synthesize a multiplicity of information before drawing conclusions. Scientific observation and discovery are engaged, mathematical concepts are explored, historical changes, migrations of cultural development, and systems of governance in various eras are studied.
In the social realm, much attention is given to students' interpersonal skills and communicative abilities, bolstered by opportunities to engage in projects with practical and ‘real world’ applications. Class field trips become more ambitious in scope, and often include the physical challenges of ropes courses, rock climbing, caving, outdoor wilderness camping and more. Such travel tests students and supports them in building confidence in their capabilities, as well as creating memorable bonding experiences.
Sixth Grade topics include Mineralogy, Geography, Astronomy, an introduction to Economics, and the study of the Roman system of law. Physics lessons bring first conscious experiences in causality. Mathematics in this year exposes students to the precision of geometry, serving to reassure them of the beauty and order of the natural world.
In Seventh Grade, studying the Renaissance and great world explorations inspires students’ perspectives on human capacities and cultures. Training in scientific observation continues through experiments in combustion and mechanics, resonating with the emerging forces of the adolescent, and laying the foundation for an understanding of technology.
Eighth Graders delve more deeply into the physical laws of the universe, studying Meteorology, Physiology, and Hydraulics. They explore their burgeoning inner life of feeling through the study of Poetry. Rounding out their journeys through main lessons in history, the teacher brings an overview of the revolutions of the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries - apropos of this stage in their lives - during which they spend time composing their own personal "declarations of independence."