Middle School Enrichment classes are interest-based seminars. Most are graded on a pass/no pass basis; however, Yearbook, Band, and Art will be given letter grades. These classes require students to produce work both in and out of the classroom. In addition, students must work together to make the classes successful. Elective grades are calculated into the grade point average; however, they are not calculated into the 8th grade Academic Award.
Placement decisions in some classes are made on a variety of criteria that include student interest as well as performance in classes throughout the year. The Woodside Middle School teachers, in consultation with the administration, determine placement of all rising sixth, seventh and eighth grade students. Students will be directed based on the following:
Be in good academic standing and maintain at least a C average each trimester in all core academic courses including math, language arts, science, social studies, Spanish, physical education, art and music.
Be mature, self-directed, and show high levels of motivation, responsibility and reliability by maintaining a C average in all their core academic courses.
Students who are not in good academic standing and receive a grade below a C will be assigned to courses that will support improved academic achievement such as study skills. If a student’s academic performance improves by the end of the trimester, the student may be able to select from available electives.
In the event that a student’s grades deteriorate during the course of the year, the student will be removed from their electives and placed in the appropriate support classes.
Enrichment offerings vary over the course of the school year and from trimester to trimester based on students’ needs.
Students will work on advanced art projects and a mentored, project-based curriculum. This course will emphasize creative exploration and development. Students explore the structure of art, including line, texture, color, value, and space; learn basic drawing techniques; work in two and three-dimensional forms; and experiment with diverse media.
Students will have an opportunity to play a variety of music that ranges in time period and style. As we rehearse the music, we will build on general musical skills, technique specific to instruments and individuals, and work together as members of a team to create a final musical product that they will perform for the school community. 7th and 8th grade students who want to be in Jazz Band are required to be in this elective.
Join a team of dedicated students to design, create, and publish our school yearbook. We start with 88 blank pages, and by the end of the 2nd trimester, we will have a complete book highlighting the 2016-2017 school year. If you are a student who likes a challenge, is responsible and able to meet deadlines, understands the importance of a quality product, and is willing to put in some extra time, then this elective might be for you.
A few things to know:
Yearbook is a graded elective
You will need to attend one lunch meeting per week
Some work will need to be done outside of class hours
This course will allow students the opportunity to explore different aspects of our virtual reality devices. We’ll work on the logistics of how to best use this technology, while also learning about a multitude of interests; both science-related and with other subjects in mind.
This course will allow students to learn about the different systems of the body. Whether it be through zSpace, guest speakers, dissections, or engaging projects, we’ll take an in-depth look at the intricacies of our body in a fun, comprehensive format.
This course will allow students to take advantage of our wonderful school garden, while learning about plants and nutrition. We’ll focus on learning about the differences of particular plants, harvesting, planting for the seasons, nutrition, and composting (and recycling). In addition, we’ll also set time aside to learn about wellness and stress management and how nature can be a catalyst in achieving a more peaceful mindset.
Start your digital education by learning the principles of game design. Learn what makes a great game by playing existing games and creating your own custom video game! What you learn in game design can impact your design projects for years to come!
Learn how to make interactive toys with littleBits electronics! After learning the tools, you will create your own toy by observing and testing with our preschoolers. You might just make the next big thing!
The Community Service elective is designed to give students the opportunity to learn about Community Service opportunities both within and outside of the school. In addition, students will assist Woodside School teachers in their classrooms and earn Community Service hours.
This elective is designed for students who will participate in the Peer Leader program. Students will receive leadership training as well as participate in activities that focus on the skills needed to be effective Peer Leaders In addition, students will assist Woodside School teachers in their classrooms and earn Community Service hours. Students in this class must be enrolled in the Peer Leader program.
Students will learn strategies for staying organized, time-management, completing homework assignments, task completion, researching skills, editing skills, comprehension strategies, and test taking skills. Overall students will learn advocacy skills that will help set the foundation that is needed before the next level of schooling. This class is strongly recommended for Middle School students who need help staying organized and completing homework assignments. This class is designed to help struggling learners. Class size will be limited, and placements will be made by the staff.
Students will explore the world of short stories by writing creative stories of their own. Students will be encouraged to write a variety of stories, including children’s stories and fantasy. Each student will create a final project of a complete short story book with illustrations.
Students will write and produce a middle school newspaper using a Desktop publisher program by studying basic journalism and ethics in writing, story structure, writing elements, and tricks of the trade to creatively hook readers using attention-grabbing headlines and relate expert opinions, facts, and statistics. Students will take on newspaper positions to run the class and prepare a published middle school newspaper featuring WES and community news and feature stories, sports, reviews, editorials, advice columns, and puzzles/comics among others student generated ideas. This class is for the most dedicated students and requires a commitment to excellence.
Documentary Filmmaking (Modified History Day) Top of Page
Students will conduct in-depth original research and create documentaries to be shown at the Woodside Film Festival. This elective requires a yearlong commitment. Students have the option to submit their documentaries to various competitions and film festivals, which may require travel. Students and parents should also be aware that the competitions occur around the same time as the Science Fair competitions.
8th grade students will participate in one of the most enjoyable Woodside School traditions, the annual Operetta. Each spring, the Operetta stars the entire 8th grade. Each year's musical production is a lovely farewell from the 8th grade to the entire school. 8th grade students will be enrolled in Operetta for all of their elective classes during the 3rd trimester.
The Woodside School Student Council consists of officers and class representatives who are elected by the Middle School to represent them. Student Council teaches self-government and leadership through participation in parliamentary procedures and the election process. The Student Council supports the school and numerous organizations with both time and donations.
The Woodside School Student Council meets each week and works very hard to offer events to the students. Some of these events include Middle School dances, weekly ice cream sales, and several school spirit dress-up days. Please refer to the Student Council page in the Middle School section of the school’s webpage for more information. Student Council meets on Tuesdays at lunch.
In a setting modeled after a big band, students will focus on traditional and modern jazz ensemble music including swing, rock, salsa, and popular music. Through the music, students will expand their knowledge of syncopated rhythms, jazz harmonies, and techniques needed to play in a variety of styles. This class meets during zero period (7:30 - 8:20 a.m.), is by invitation only, and all Jazz Band students must participate in the Band elective.
In a "glee club" like setting, students will practice the specific techniques relevant to singing. Time will be spent on good tone, singing strong, preparing the solo voice and small ensemble harmonic singing. Students will do this while learning music from pop culture and musicals. Students will expand their knowledge and comprehension of music and improving using their ear training skills. Students will also be asked to participate in active listening to each other and giving positive and constructive peer feedback. Teamwork, respect, and responsibility are key personal characteristics for success in music while having fun and spreading the joy of music to others. This is a zero period elective (7:30 - 8:20 a.m.) for 8th grade students only who are in the Chamber Singers.
In an ensemble setting, students will practice the specific techniques relevant to singing. Time will be spent on posture and position, listening for the accurate pitches, and good tone. Students will do this while learning music from a varied repertoire - classical and romantic styles, folk songs, multi-cultural, and popular music. Students will expand their knowledge and comprehension of music and improving on reading notation, recognizing patterns, and listening for cues. Students will also be asked to participate in active listening exercises wherein they analyze or form an opinion on what they hear. They will discuss the role music plays in the many aspects of their lives and the world around them. Teamwork, respect, and responsibility are key personal characteristics for success in music while having fun and spreading the joy of music to others. This is a zero period elective (7:30 - 8:20 a.m.).