In both 7th and 8th grade, BlueSky students take a full-year course in each of the four core subjects: language arts, math, science, and social studies. A half-year of health and physical education and three semester-long electives each year round out middle school students’ schedule.
Middle School Group Pace
Group Pace courses are designed to create a highly interactive community of learners. Students have frequent opportunities for interaction with their peers in live, collaborative learning environments.
Students are expected to attend weekly live online sessions in their courses and stay on pace with their work. This allows all the students in the class to be familiar with the same content at the same time, creating more productive discussions, collaborative projects, and other interactive activities.
Language Arts 7
In Language Arts 7, students cover all of the required state academic standards for language arts. Lessons include reading for information, speaking and listening, media literacy and provide exposure to a variety of literature. Projects and assignments encourage real-life connections. Live class sessions are on Tuesday at 9:30.
Students will learn 7th grade math topics in the areas of numbers and operations, measurements, geometry, algebraic concepts, and data analysis and probability through hands on activities, interactive lessons, and practical math applications. Live class sessions are on Monday at 9:30.
This course will provide students with enlightenment and instruction on the nature of science, using a discovery process to teach the scientific method, and the use of metric measurements in scientific investigations. It covers the study of the Universe, stars, constellations, and objects in the Solar System. Movement and pathways of the Earth and Moon are investigated, with natural paths uncovered as students discover just how large the universe really is. Next, students will discover how Earth materials are formed and what they can teach us about Mother Earth’s past as they investigate the natural processes that shape its ecosystem, the landscape and the creation of different environments on Earth. The course then covers basic concepts of force, motion, and equilibrium. Concepts of human biology are also uncovered, with emphasis on body systems and those amazing functions that contribute to our wellness. Agricultural science and its impact on biotechnology is introduced, along with its effect on human interaction with the earth. Finally, the basics of environmental science are covered, and through the use of stunning photography and lively animation, students will interact with endangered species, learn about natural resource use, environmental health, pollution, and biodiversity. Live class sessions are on Thursday at 9:30.
American Experience 7
Students in American Experience learn about people, issues and events of significance to this nation’s history from 1800 to the current era of globalization. They examine the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution and the Bill of Rights, and Supreme Court decisions for their lasting impact on the American people, economy and governance structure. Students study civics and economic principles in depth, drawing connections between these disciplines and history to explain the impact of various policies on how people lived, worked and functioned in society. They create and use detailed maps of places in the United States and conduct historical inquiry on a topic in the nation’s history. Live class sessions are Wednesday at 9:30.
Health & Wellness 7
This course provides students with the opportunity to explore a variety of sports and sport related movements in addition to health and fitness concepts. Health topics relate to nutrition, fitness health and wellness, mental and emotional health, and stress reduction. Physical education units will include co-curricular activities around activities in the United States. Live class sessions are on Monday at 1:00.
This course offers students an introduction to art appreciation as well as preparation for high school art. The elements and principles of art will be studied and applied to personal expression in two and three-dimensional projects. Students will explore the creative process through projects and by studying works of individual artists. Analyzing and judging works of art is ongoing. Live sessions are Wednesdays at 1:00.
Behind the Music 7
How do instruments work? What makes that tune stop you in your tracks? Students will study music through the ages learning about Classical, Jazz, Movie music, and more. Daily activities will include listening and responding to music, and the study of basic music theory. Requires media player & ability to hear sound on the computer. Live class sessions are on Wednesdays at 1:00.
Come explore the exciting world of Family and Consumer Science! In FACS 7 you will learn awesome new things to help you with daily living! Refresh on safety tips and tricks for babysitting and being home alone, how to build friendships and self-esteem, make delicious food and do your own laundry! Students will be responsible for providing their own ingredients for recipes. Live sessions are on Wednesdays at 1:00.
Intro to Film 7
This elective course will introduce students to the history of film. Through movies, students will examine elements of plot, setting, style, and point of view. Class activities include viewing, listening, researching, and analyzing film. Students will also learn how to discuss and write about films critically. Live sessions are on Mondays at 1:00.
This course is designed to introduce the basics of computers and keyboarding skills. Students will develop and enhance touch skills for entering information using a keyboard to compose and produce personal, educational, and professional documents. Live class sessions are on Mondays at 1:00.
Minnesota Melting Pot 7
What is a melting pot, and how does it apply to our great state of Minnesota? The culture of Minnesota was created, and continues to be influenced, by immigrants. Students in this class will be introduced to the different cultures and people that live in Minnesota. In addition, students will explore their own culture and discover how they fit into the melting pot. Live sessions are on Wednesdays at 1:00.
Language Arts 8
The Language Arts 8 course promotes critical reading and comprehension across genres. Course assignments encourage effective writing for a variety of purposes while course materials provide real-life connections relevant to daily life and future academic and career goals. Live class sessions are on Wednesday or Thursday at 11:00.
Students will learn 8th grade math topics through hands on activities, interactive lessons, and practical math applications. Areas studied include linear functions and graphing, trigonometry concepts, probability and statistics, measurement, and geometry. Live class sessions are on Wednesday or Thursday at 11:00.
This course provides a rigorous and comprehensive foundation for the 8th-grade student about to enter high school science. It covers the relevant topics in all the major disciplines, building on prior knowledge and expanding on subjects introduced earlier in middle school. Students begin with a review of the scientific process and get more into depth with the idea of critical analysis of theories and experimental research. They will move on to discuss principles of physical science and energy. In the life science portion of the course, students will cover structure and function of organisms, genetics, and evolution, and tenets of ecology. This will flow into the environmental science topics including earth’s cycles and environmental problems. A brief discussion of the solar system will also be covered. Students will learn about the assigned topics through interactive activities, experimentation, discussion, and engaging text and animations. Graded assignments will be stimulating and thought-provoking, hopefully paving the way for future interest in the scientific disciplines. Live class sessions are on Monday or Tuesday at 11:00.
Global Studies 8
Students in Global Studies explore the regions of the world using geographic information from print and electronic sources. They analyze important trends in the modern world such as demographic change, shifting trade patterns, and intensified cultural interactions due to globalization. Students participate in civic discussion on contemporary issues, conduct historical inquiry and study events over the last half century that have shaped the contemporary world. They analyze connections between revolutions, independence movements and social transformations, and understand reasons for the creation of modern nation states. They learn that governments are based on different political philosophies and serve various purposes. By learning economic principles of trade and the factors that affect economic growth, students understand why there are different standards of living in countries around the world. Live class sessions are on Monday or Tuesday at 11:00.
Health & Wellness 8
This course provides students with the opportunity to explore a variety of sports and sport related movements in addition to health and fitness concepts. Health topics relate to nutrition, fitness health and wellness, mental and emotional health, and stress reduction. Physical education units will include co-curricular activities around from around the world. Live class sessions are on Tuesday at 1:00 (semester 1) or Monday at 1:00 (semester 2).