Camp 2013 - Lyons

Middle School

Welcome to Middle School! This division includes grades 6-8:

Each subject area teacher provides instruction for all the middle school grade levels.  We believe that having the same teachers throughout middle school is a special advantage for our students because of the close relationships that form over those four years together.   Middle School is a period of extreme change for students, and having the stability of the same teachers provides a dependable support system around our students.

The primary goal of the Middle School program is to meet the educational and developmental needs of our students as they begin adolescence.  The Middle School years are a challenging time because the social and emotional needs of children change along with their maturing minds and bodies.  We strive to create a challenging yet nurturing environment that helps our students become more advanced and confident as thinkers, communicators, and citizens.  By achieving this goal, we prepare students for success in high school and beyond.

Building on the skills and lessons of Lower School, the Middle School program challenges students with more sophisticated work, a broader and more complex range of assignments, more creative and analytical writing, more experience in problem-solving, participation in debates and other public speaking assignments, and an expectation that students will develop a higher level of personal responsibility and community awareness.

The curriculum reflects a belief that teaching students how to think and how to communicate their thoughts clearly is just as important as expanding their knowledge base.  Another important goal is for students to learn to appreciate multiple points of view and to have the skills for meaningful discourse, whether through writing or classroom discussion.  The small classes at Da Vinci afford students every opportunity to develop these crucial skills that will guide them toward a successful future.

What happens after students graduate from Da Vinci?
Da Vinci students leave 8th grade well-prepared to succeed academically in any high school environment.  Da Vinci graduates have gone to all types of schools: public high schools, independent or parochial schools, Illinois Math & Science Academy, and selective college prep boarding schools out of state.  Wherever they have gone, Da Vinci alumni report feeling prepared and ready to take on the challenges at the next level of their education.  Students often test into higher placement levels as freshmen, or end up taking advanced placement and honors courses as upperclassmen.  Some of our oldest graduates are in college and attending outstanding schools like Columbia University, Harvey Mudd College, and Wellesley College.  As Da Vinci grows and sends more graduates into the world, our graduates' experiences in high school, college, and beyond will reflect the life-long value of a Da Vinci Academy education.