Middle school is a time of transition and a time for students to rise to the next level of academic responsibility.

It is a time to more fully realize their potential to be true citizen scholars who are getting smart to do good. Middle School at Amana offers students the opportunity to become social justice champions and technology wizards, utilizing their STEM skills and their culture and character knowledge to make meaningful change in the world.

Starting in 7th grade at Amana, students have the opportunity to pursue High School coursework. 7th graders may choose to take 9th grade Biology, and 8th graders may choose to take both 9th grade Algebra and 10th Grade Physical Science.

We offer a unique structure called Power Hour, where students can participate in meaningful enrichment activities such as Robotics, Science Olympiad, Georgia Tech’s Inventure Prize, and many others.

English Language Arts

A measured approach to literacy

Much like in Elementary school, Middle School ELA is rooted in the EL Education ELA Curriculum, which is a comprehensive, standards-based core literacy program that engages teachers and diverse learners through compelling, real-world content. Curriculum modules are centered around diverse and current topical issues and texts, which makes them emotionally resonant for students during a particularly challenging transitional growth period.


Developing mathematical understanding

Math instruction at Amana is based on the Georgia State Standards of Excellence, which focus on actively engaging students in the development of mathematical understanding by using manipulatives and a variety of representations, working independently and cooperatively to solve problems, estimating and computing efficiently, and conducting investigations and recording findings. Students learn to apply mathematical concepts and skills in the context of authentic problems and gain the ability to understand concepts rather than merely follow a sequence of procedures. In mathematics classrooms, students learn to think critically in a mathematical way with an understanding that there are many different ways to a solution and sometimes more than one right answer in applied mathematics. Students in 8th grade have the opportunity to take high-school algebra.


The framework of learning expeditions

At Amana, what students learn about in social studies often drives the framework of one of their learning expeditions. As students learn about history and discover the societal and political repercussions of the events that shape it, they are able to use their critical thinking skills to examine things from a historical perspective, but also to think about how those events might apply to our current world and communities. In Middle School, students really start taking a Social Justice lens to these discussions, talking about human rights and why they matter. They are encouraged to think critically about the relationships between people and their surrounding geography, and how that might shape policies and politics in a particular region of the country or the world. 


Knowledge about the natural world

Science consists of a way of thinking and investigating, as well as a growing body of knowledge about the natural world. To be literate in science, students need to possess sufficient understanding of fundamental science content knowledge, the ability to engage in the science and engineering practices, and to use scientific and technological information correctly. Technology is infused into the curriculum and the safety of students is always foremost in instruction. In 7th and 8th grade, students have the opportunity to take high-school level coursework with 9th grade Biology and 10th grade physical science.

Arabic is one of the United Nations’ six official languages and is spoken by 400 million people around the world. Like Chinese and Russian, Arabic is considered by educators and policymakers to be a language of economic and cultural significance.

This course is designed for high school students to understand, communicate, and adapt to a digital world as it impacts their personal life, society, and the business world. Introduction to Graphic Design is the prerequisite course for both the Graphics Production and Graphics Design pathways. The Graphics and Design course provides students with the processes involved in the technologies of printing, publishing, packaging, electronic imaging, and their allied industries. 

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Expeditionary STEM

Design thinking process

While STEM is integrated throughout the curriculum, students do have a dedicated STEM lab class daily. It is during this time that they practice and utilize the design thinking process to design and produce meaningful products that answer a question or solve a problem either locally or globally. 

Middle school students at Amana will have the opportunity to take two high-school STEM courses – Introduction to Digital Technology and Introduction to Graphic Design. Introduction to Digital Technology is a prerequisite course for Web & Digital Communications, Programming, Advanced Programming, Information Support & Services, and Network Systems pathways.


Integrating global skills

Fully integrating global skills and knowledge into the curriculum is tied closely to environmental stewardship and social justice as students are challenged to grapple with the most complex problems facing the world such as climate change, structures of economic inequities, and international terrorism and conflict. They are asked to probe how the peoples of the world are connected and what young people can do to make a difference. One of the unique core practices of Expeditionary Learning is a focus on global awareness and world language learning. At Amana Academy, this is evidenced in our Arabic world language program, which is taught in all grades. A firm command of Arabic will enhance cognitive skills; broaden students’ perspectives and cultural understanding. 

Arabic is one of the United Nations’ six official languages and is spoken by 400 million people around the world. Like Chinese and Russian, Arabic is considered by educators and policymakers to be a language of economic and cultural significance. 

Fluency in Arabic will give Amana students an important edge in getting into top colleges, and in the job market of the 21st century, as a firm command of Arabic will enhance cognitive skills, and broaden students’ perspectives and cultural understanding. Students in Middle School receive daily Arabic instruction. If they complete all three years of middle school Arabic at Amana, they receive one full high school credit for foreign language. Students may also take French in 7th and 8th grade, which makes them eligible for a second high school foreign language credit. 

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Creating opportunities for leadership

Students in grades 6-8 receive two days per week of Adventure PE instruction. A clear expression of EL Education’s roots in Outward Bound, the spirit and experience of adventure permeates Amana Academy. It helps to create student engagement and focus on character that distinguishes the EL Education experience. Adventure can be any physical, artistic, or intellectual experience that involves risk, challenge, and discovery. We promote the kind of adventures that create opportunities for leadership and collaboration as groups of students and teachers face challenges together.

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Enrichment and extension activities

Power Hour is a designated time at the end of the school day where students can participate in enrichment and extension activities, or receive remediation if necessary. Students participate in competition-level club activities such as First Lego League Robotics, Science Olympiad, Technology Fair, Science Fair, and the Georgia Tech Inventure Prize. This is also a time to complete additional work on expedition products.