Looking for Something Extraordinary? – SJCS Sixth Grade Academy

Beginning Fall 2018 – An educational experience that will allow sixth graders to grow and flourish during their middle school years.


Is your family looking for a truly unique and empowering 6th grade experience that will set your child on a strong foundation for their middle and high school years? We are pleased to introduce our new Sixth Grade Academy, starting Fall 2018. The Academy is designed to not only ease the transition of this critical year in your child’s education, but to ensure that they are surrounded by caring and dedicated teachers who create a supportive environment to encourage your child’s love of learning.


What is the Academy?

The Academy is a new approach to middle school for all incoming sixth graders at St. Joseph’s.

Featured in the Greenville Journal

What’s “new” about the approach?

Sixth grade is a significant transitional year for most students. There’s more movement, more teachers, more classes, and of course, there are more students, many of whom are bigger and older. In order to ease this transition, our Academy will provide both a unique place and teaching staff for sixth graders during this important time.

So is it really just new space?

Not at all. The dedicated space is merely a means to an end. It will allow the sixth grade teachers to collaborate across disciplines much more effectively, while also allowing them to be more responsive to the needs of their students. Within the Academy, teachers will be able to take part of a day, or an entire day if necessary, to reinforce and apply particular concepts, lessons, and information to the sixth grade as a whole. For example, should students need help with math concepts with which they have obviously struggled, the Academy will make that possible. Additionally, this format will allow for the sixth grade class to view topical films, hear inspiring and informative guest speakers, and address specific behavioral/social issues that are unique to these students.

Will the students be on their own all day?

No. All sixth graders will still participate in Middle School Households with seventh and eighth graders, and lunch will still be with all students in the cafeteria. Both PE and Fine Arts classes will be outside the dedicated space, though sixth graders only will be in these classes. There will also be opportunities throughout the year where sixth graders will interact with other students, making it easier for them to integrate into the wider school community.

Will the classes still be single-gender?

Yes. The benefits of single-gender classrooms at this age are well-documented, and we have no desire to lose this important aspect of our middle school education model.

In a nutshell, here’s what’s NEW! in Sixth Grade for next year:
• Dedicated teachers that will ONLY teach in sixth grade means better connections with their students
• Dedicated space that includes not only classrooms, but meeting space for cross-curricular activities
• Responsive schedule that can change according to student needs within the curriculum
• A focus on team-building and belonging, including activities that help integration into a new school
• More access to Chromebooks and classroom technology
• Virtue and character focus within the curriculum, especially literature
• More opportunities for field trips and guest speakers
• Common planning period for all sixth grade teachers to help identify student needs and design support
To schedule a tour or for more information, contact the Admissions Office at admissions@sjcatholicschool.org.

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