Curriculum & Instruction

Curriculum maps will continue to be reviewed, updated, and added over the 2016-2017 school year.

Please click on a department name to obtain its mission statement, course flow, curriculum maps, and best practices.

 

Computer Education


Computer Education Mission Statement
It is the mission of the Spotswood Public Schools Computer Education Department to develop students' computational and critical thinking skills and show them not only how to use, but how to create, new technologies. This knowledge will help prepare students for the 21st century, regardless of their ultimate field of study or occupation.

Through Exploratory Arts at Memorial Middle School, students have the option to explore Computer Science through 21st Century Computer Solutions 6, 7, & 8. In these courses students will develop computer knowledge and skills they can apply to day-to-day tasks and will also build foundational knowledge and skills needed as they transition to high school.

Computer Education Course Offerings

Grade 6 Grade 7 Grade 8
21st Century Computer Solutions 6
21st Century Computer Solutions 7
21st Century Computer Solutions 8

Computer Education Best Practices
Computer Education teachers at Memorial Middle School consistently apply research-based best practices for effective instruction including, but not limited to, modeling, guided practice, independent practice, discovery learning, cooperative learning, use of manipulatives and tools, scaffolding, differentiated instruction, real-world applications, and technology.

Back to top

 

English Language Arts


English Language Arts Mission Statement
It is the mission of the Spotswood Public Schools English Language Arts Department to provide a comprehensive curriculum that is based upon research and best practice, ensuring that students become critical thinkers, proficient readers, writers, and communicators in a global and technological society.

It is the goal of the Memorial Middle School English Language Arts Department to provide students with quality, rigorous instruction that encourages them to become critical and creative thinkers through experiences that help them meet the particular challenges of reading, writing, speaking, listening, and language. The middle grades are intended to bridge the foundational skills of elementary school with the more complex concepts of high school English Language Arts classes. Memorial Middle School offers two English Language Arts sequences that provide students opportunities to master the content and prepare them for transition to high school. All courses are aligned to the Common Core State Standards with PARCC assessments being administered at every grade.

English Language Arts Department Course Flow Chart
This chart illustrates possible course sequencing in the English Language Arts Department. Courses have been grouped according to level of academic rigor. The rigor of a student's academic schedule and the grades received are key aspects considered for placement in high school courses. Please note: Sequencing need not be constant; students may move between "levels" as long as prerequisite courses are taken and student meets the criteria for placement.

Grade 6 Grade 7 Grade 8
Sequence I
6th Grade ELA
7th Grade ELA

8th Grade ELA

Sequence II
Honors 6th Grade ELA
Honors 7th Grade ELA
Honors 8th Grade ELA

English Language Arts Best Practices
English Language Arts teachers at Memorial Middle School consistently apply research-based best practices for effective instruction including, but not limited to, modeling, guided practice, independent practice, discovery learning, cooperative learning, guided instruction, use of manipulatives and tools, scaffolding, differentiated instruction, real-world applications, and technology.

Back to top

 

Health & Physical Education


Health and Physical Education Mission Statement
It is the mission of the Spotswood Public Schools Health and Physical Education Department to provide all students with the opportunity to engage in positive health-enhancing experiences. In both the health classroom and the physical education arena, staff to promote a lifestyle choice of physical activity and emotional well-being by educating in wellness, integrated skills, drugs and medicines, human relationships and sexuality, motor skill development, teambuilding and cooperative skills, and fitness.

Physical Education courses in grades 6-8 are designed to provide all students with the opportunity to engage in positive, health-enhancing experiences. In promoting wellness, integrated skills, motor skill development, teamwork and cooperation, and fitness, the department attempts to guide students to physical activities and life skills they will enjoy and continue to participate in through high school and the rest of their lives in order to maintain a healthy lifestyle. The curriculum is organized into three categories of team, individual, and fitness activities. By engaging in and focusing on each group area, the department believes students will be better prepared to fulfill the department mission and goals. To this end, the following activities are offered:

Team Activities
Basketball, Challenge/Team Building Activities, Elementary Games, Flag/Touch Football, Floor Hockey, Frisbee Games, Newcomb, Soccer, Softball, Speedball, Team Handball, Volleyball, Wiffleball
Mastery Objectives
Activities offered within the team activities section of the curriculum will involve students working as a large group to accomplish a specified goal. Students will develop the use of strategy and exploratory tactics. Students will also use cooperative and leadership skills in the group atmosphere with the occasional added motivation of competition. Skill development of kicking, passing, catching, throwing, and striking will be emphasized, practiced, and mastered.

 

Individual Activities
Archery, Badminton, Bowling, Golf, Lifetime Leisure Activities, Pickleball, tennis, Modified Track & Field Events
Mastery Objectives
Activities offered within the individual activities section of the curriculum will provide students opportunities to learn a number of activities they can do on their own or with a small amount of people or equipment. Student focus will be on developing and learning activities that foster an active lifestyle without the intensity of team sports and without the focus of "exercise". Students will master the concepts of hand-eye coordination, manipulative skills, and rhythmic skills.

 

Fitness Activities
Circuit Training, Core Training, Endurance Training, Interval Training, Jogging, Power Walking, Resistance Band Routines, Step Aerobics, Strength Training, Weight Training, Presidential Fitness Challenge
Mastery Objectives
Activities offered within the fitness activities section of the curriculum will allow students to participate in any activity that is directly related to improving flexibility, body composition, muscular endurance, muscular strength, and/or cardiovascular endurance. All students will apply health related and skill related concepts and skills to develop and maintain a healthy, active lifestyle. Students will also understand key components of training in regards to overload and specificity. They will also work to improve balance, agility, power, and speed.

Students in grades 6-8 are required to complete a Health course each year in accordance with New Jersey State Standards. Health courses at Memorial Middle School are organized by grade and include the following units of study:

6th Grade Health Education Program
Unit 1: Wellness
Unit 2: Puberty
Unit 3: Nutrition
Unit 4: Refusal Skills
Unit 5: Public vs. Private

7th Grade Health Education Program
Unit 1: Mental and Social Changes during Puberty
Unit 2: Physical Changes During Puberty/Reproductive System
Unit 3: Pregnancy and Birth
Unit 4: Tobacco

8th Grade Health Education Program
Unit 1: Relationships
Unit 2: Abstinence
Unit 3: Safe Sex
Unit 4: Sexually Transmitted Infections
Unit 5: Drugs

Back to top

 

Mathematics


Mathematics Mission Statement
It is the mission of the Spotswood Public Schools Mathematics Department to inspire students to understand the fundamental concepts of mathematics, think analytically, communicate mathematically, become resourceful problem solvers, and develop an appreciation for the usefulness of mathematics.

The middle grades are intended to bridge the foundational skills of elementary school with the more complex concepts of high school mathematics. Memorial Middle School offers two math sequences that provide students opportunities to master the content and prepare them for transition to high school. All courses are aligned to the Common Core State Standards with PARCC assessments being administered at every grade. Because of the sequential nature of mathematics course offerings, many courses have prerequisites.

NOTE: Students who complete Algebra 1 or Honors Algebra 1 and who meet all specified requirements will have the option to use this as credit towards graduation and move on to Geometry when entering high school. A minimum of three math courses will still be required at the high school.

Mathematics Department Course Flow Chart
This chart illustrates possible course sequencing in the Mathematics Department. Courses have been grouped according to level of academic rigor. The rigor of a student's academic schedule and the grades received are key aspects considered for placement in high school courses. Please note: Sequencing need not be constant; students may move between "levels" as long as prerequisite courses are taken and student meets the criteria for placement.

Grade 6 Grade 7 Grade 8
Sequence I
6th Grade Math
Pre-Algebra

Algebra I

Sequence II
Honors 6th Grade Math
Honors Pre-Algebra
Honors Algebra I

Mathematics Best Practices
Mathematics teachers at Memorial Middle School consistently apply research-based best practices for effective instruction including, but not limited to, modeling, guided practice, independent practice, discovery learning, cooperative learning, guided instruction, use of manipulatives and tools, scaffolding, differentiated instruction, real-world applications, and technology.

Back to top

 

Performing Arts


Performing Arts Department Mission Statement
It is the mission of the Spotswood Public Schools Performing Arts Department to:

  • Create a performing arts community that is rich with cultural, social, and intellectual diversity.
  • Foster self-discipline and focus in solving problems creatively.
  • Empower students to make informed aesthetic choices.
  • Provide all students with the opportunity to succeed as individuals and within a group setting.
  • Provide a productive and safe space for students to express themselves.
  • Develop social skills that enable each student to engage with his or her peers in a responsible and respectful manner.
  • Prepare students for active participation in creating the culture of the present and future.
  • Provide students with meaningful experiences to publicly perform and raise esteem of the performing arts in the local community.

Through Exploratory Arts at Memorial Middle School, students have the opportunity to develop knowledge and skills in the area of performing arts through the following course/grade offerings:

Grade 6 Grade 7 Grade 8
Music
Public Speaking
Drama
6th Grade Band 7th Grade Band 8th Grade Band

Performing Arts Best Practices
The performing arts faculty at Memorial Middle School applies research-based best practices for effective instruction that includes, but is not limited to, modeling, guided practice, independent practice, discovery learning, cooperative learning, scaffolding, differentiated instruction, real-world applications, and technology.

Back to top

 

Science


Science Mission Statement
It is the mission of the Spotswood Public Schools Science Department to provide safe, equitable, student-focused scientific experiences that encourage the development of intellectual curiosity and scientific literacy along with respect and appreciation for the world we all share.

The Memorial Middle School science program is designed to both give students a solid foundational knowledge base in the core scientific disciplines of Life Science, Physical Science and Earth/Space Science as well as continue to develop student's skills in the processes of scientific inquiry. The curriculum is designed to spiral through the core disciplines, reinforcing key concepts as students progress each year and laying a solid foundation for the formal study of Biology, Chemistry, Physics and Environmental Science in High School. The middle school science curriculum is aligned to the New Jersey Core Curricular Standards and incorporates essential elements of the Common Core State Standards for English Language Arts and Mathematics.

Grade 6 Grade 7 Grade 8
6th Grade Science
7th Grade Science
8th Grade Science

Science Best Practices
Science teachers at Memorial Middle School consistently apply research-based best practices for effective instruction including, but not limited to, modeling, guided practice, independent practice, discovery learning, cooperative learning, use of manipulatives and tools, scaffolding, differentiated instruction, real-world applications, laboratory experiences, problem-based learning, and technology.

Back to top

 

Social Studies


Social Studies Mission Statement
It is the mission of the Spotswood Public Schools Social Studies Department to investigate active citizenship in the 21st Century, World History/Global Studies as well as United States History with a concentration on civics, government, human rights, geography, the environment, economics, innovation, technology, history and culture from a variety of perspectives through the lens of document analysis skills and validating and documenting research. These skills are vertically aligned throughout the district courses to engage students in analytical thinking, critical analysis, adept decision making and effective communication.

The middle grades are intended to connect the fundamentals of citizenship within the schools and local community to the nation and the world. The Social Studies Department offers courses that are aligned with the New Jersey Core Curricular Standards as well as incorporating the essential elements of the Common Core Standards.

Grade 6 Grade 7 Grade 8
American History
World Geography
Ancient World History

Social Studies Best Practices
Social Studies teachers at Memorial Middle School consistently applies document-based and research-based best practices for effective instruction including, but not limited to, modeling, guided practice, independent practice, discovery learning, cooperative learning, use of manipulatives, scaffolding, differentiated instruction, real-world applications, and technology.

Back to top

 

Visual Arts


Visual Arts Mission Statement
It is the mission of the Spotswood Public Schools Visual Arts Department to provide students with art experiences that develop and refine their art making techniques, problem solving skills, and cultural and historical artistic awareness.

Memorial Middle School students are taught to analyze the characteristics and essential elements of the visual arts. The curriculum is designed to have students recognize that art is used to reflect emotions and communicate with audiences. Through investigating, evaluating, and problem solving within the realm of fine arts, students gain the knowledge needed for authentic art appreciation and understanding.

The courses are designed to allow for application of this knowledge into their own creative processes. The courses are sequenced across the grades to increase the complexity of the artwork studied and the sophistication of students' responses to specific pieces.

Visual Arts Department Course Flow Chart

Sequence
Art 6
Art 7
Art 8

Visual Arts Best Practices
Visual Arts teachers at Memorial Middle School consistently apply research-based best practices for effective instruction including, but not limited to, modeling, guided practice, independent practice, discovery learning, cooperative learning, scaffolding, differentiated instruction, real-world applications, and technology.

Back to top

 

World Languages


World Languages Mission Statement
It is the mission of the Spotswood Public Schools World Languages Department to provide a comprehensive curriculum where students learn to speak, read, and write in more than one language and develop an awareness and appreciation of diverse cultures, providing them with a tremendous advantage in school and the workplace.

Memorial Middle School students are provided with rich opportunities to effectively communicate in oral and written foreign languages. The sixth to eighth grade World Language courses investigate the language, culture, geography and history of diverse societies. The curriculum is designed to prepare students for continued language study in Spotswood High School and promote active citizenship in a global society. Students gain communicative skills and cross-cultural connections to enhance future career and societal success.

World Language Department Course Flow Chart

Grade 6 Grade 7 Grade 8
Spanish 6
Spanish 7

World Language 8

Spanish I

World Languages Best Practices
World Languages teachers at Memorial Middle School consistently apply research-based best practices for effective instruction including, but not limited to, modeling, guided practice, independent practice, discovery learning, cooperative learning, scaffolding, differentiated instruction, real-world applications, and technology.

Back to top