Junior High Curriculum & Instruction
Our junior high schools offer a variety of educational opportunities and support programs for all students. Curriculum is aligned to the Illinois Learning Standards and incorporates the Common Core Standards.
The junior high instructional program includes the following subject areas:
- Language Arts (reading, writing, listening, and speaking):
- Junior high students participate in a double period of language arts each day, which includes a reading class and a writing class. The curriulum balances the teaching and learning of reading strategies, writing processes, listening, and speaking skills.
- Grade 7: The social studies curriculum centers on United States history—the Constitution through the Civil War period.
- Grade 8: The social studies curriculum centers on United States history—Civil War to the present time.
- Grade 7: Students engage in the study of the life sciences, including cell structure, ecology, biological studies, genetics, and health.
- Grade 8: Students engage in the study of the chemical and physical sciences, including chemical interactions, forces, motion, and atomic structure.
- Grade 7
- 7th Grade Math: This course aligns to the 7th Grade Common Core State Standards with a focus on problem solving and application. Integers and rational numbers, proportional relationships and percent problems, equivalent expressions, equations and inequalities, sampling, probability, and basic geometry concepts are covered.
- 7th Grade Accelerated Math: This course is a compacted curriculum of both 7th and 8th Grade Common Core State Standards which includes: number systems, rational number operations, ratios, proportionality, percentages, expressions, solving linear equations, inequalities, exponents and scientific notation, graphing proportional and non-proportional relationships, angles and angle relationships, circumference and area of circles, volume of cylinders, spheres, and cones, and the Pythagorean Theorem.
- 7th Algebra 1: This advanced 7th Grade algebra course introduces the fundamental principles of algebra. Course topics include linear equations, graphs and inequalities, systems of equations, exponents and scientific notation, simplifying and factoring polynomials, quadratic equations and functions, rational expressions, and introductory radical operations.
For seventh-grade students who took Algebra 1 in sixth grade, these courses are also available:
- Advanced Topics of Algebra 1 (see course description below)
- Honors Plane & Solid Geometry (see course description below)
- Grade 8
- 8th Grade Math: This course aligns to the 8th Grade Common Core State Standards with a focus on problem solving and application. Topics include the real number system, linear equations, modeling relationships using functions, bivariate data, identifying and solving systems of linear equations, transformations, solving problems including congruence, similarity, the Pythagorean Theorem, surface area, and volume.
- 8th Grade Algebra 1: This advanced course introduces students to the fundamental principles of algebra. Algebraic symbolism, simplifying expressions, solutions to equations, the graphic representations associated with variables, and statistical variability are among the course topics. Additional points of emphasis include graphical representations, connection to related functions, and algebraic processes applied to word problems. Common Core State Standards provide the foundation for the course.
- Advanced Topics of Algebra 1: This advanced course is designed to focus on problem solving, word problems and higher-order thinking. It incorporates previously learned concepts from 7th Grade Algebra and delves deeper into the material and application process.
- Honors Plane & Solid Geometry: This advanced course is a comprehensive study of plane and solid geometry including constructions, formulas for measurement and formal proofs. It is based on the theorems and axioms that relate points, lines, planes, and solids. Topics are covered in great depth, especially area and volume of solids. Additional emphasis is placed on the integration of algebraic techniques in solving geometric problems.
- Accelerated Algebra 2: This highly accelerated high school course is designed for students who demonstrate a strong command of algebra and geometry. M328 Accelerated Algebra 2 is provided at a high school location. The course briefly reviews concepts presented in earlier course work and then rigorously expands and applies them to other areas of mathematics. In addition, selected topics from pre-calculus are studied. Ideas presented in this course involve advanced techniques of graphing and solving equations and inequalities and will prepare students to take Trigonometry/Calculus A. This course requires a graphing calculator.
- Grade 7
- Physical Education
The Junior High Enrichment Program consists of courses in fine arts, practical arts, technology, and foreign languages. The Enrichment Program is designed to provide students with an exposure to some courses in the above areas.
Academic interventions or targeted assistance may be provided to qualified students based upon the consideration of multiple data points. Interventions or supports are provided within a student’s daily schedule.
Homework is an important component of all academic programs because it provides students an opportunity to practice and apply skills and concepts taught in the classroom.
Homework assignments are due on the date specified by the teacher. Teachers will provide guidelines for their individual classroom expectations at the beginning of the year. Late homework assignments may result in a reduction in credit. Students who have excused absences are responsible for asking teachers for the assignments missed and completing them in the timeframe the teachers specify.
The amount of time students should spend on homework will vary depending on their unique needs and the work requirements of each class. However, as a general guideline, seventh-grade students may be required to spend approximately 70 minutes daily on homework assignments and related reading, while eighth graders should plan on approximately 80 minutes per day of homework assignments and related reading.Extracurricular Activities
- Language Arts (reading, writing, listening, and speaking):
Junior High Lockers
In conformance with mandated health and safety guidelines, District 15 may alter the use of lockers in 2021-22. Students will be directed where to place their personal items during the school day. The procedures on locker use described below also may be changed; school principals will alert you to updates.
Students in junior high school are assigned a locker for storing coats or jackets, book bags or backpacks, and other personal items during school hours. Students may not change lockers without permission from administrative staff. Lockers should be kept locked and the combination kept confidential. The school assumes no responsibility for the loss of articles from a locker. School administrative personnel have the right to inspect lockers at any time.
Lockers are on loan to students and remain the property of the Board of Education. Any damage to the locker is the student’s responsibility. Lockers should be kept clean and neat. No open food or beverage other than water may be stored in lockers. Scotch tape and masking tape may be used inside lockers, but stickers are not permitted, as they damage the paint. Lockers may be decorated before or after school for special occasions, but permission must be obtained from the office before decorating. No balloons, confetti, or hallway signs are permitted.