Academics
Middle School | Gr. 6-8
Enrichment Programs

Transition to Teel

Purposeful Support for 6th Graders

Incoming sixth graders face unique challenges during their first year of middle school. They step onto Teel Campus with an influx of new classmates, newfound independence and high academic expectations, all while managing the dramatic physical and emotional changes of adolescence. Transition to Teel is a purposeful series of 6th grade enrichment courses to support their growth.
Our Middle School faculty asked 'What are the things that kids need?' 'What are some of the demands they are going to face in high school, college and the working world?' They spent months discussing these issues and developed a plan to intentionally help our students get the most out of their school experience. The result of that strategic planning is Transition to Teel.
— Middle School Head Dan Keller

Study Skills

In Study Skills class we help our sixth graders learn how to learn. Using tested and proven methods for academic success, they learn study techniques for different types of assignments. They learn how to manage their time, how to use their planners, how to find their classes, and how to ask teachers for help. Study Skills teacher Ms. Longway works to make the class engaging and relevant for middle schoolers, using kid-friendly analogies and real-life scenarios students may face.

Design Thinking and Innovation

In Design Thinking and Innovation, students take on a collaborative design challenge: to create engaging, developmentally appropriate games for our prekindergarten and kindergarten students. Working in teams, 6th graders work through the design process using Tinkercad, the 3D printer and the laser cutting system to bring their digital designs to life. They learn not only how to use much of the technology in the Graw Innovation Center, but also how to work on a team and design creative solutions that have a real impact on their audience.

Civility Seminar

In Civility Seminar, students discuss real issues that happen in their lives and create solutions to deal with them effectively. Each class focuses on a particular set of scenarios or case studies based on actual interactions among students. They talk about everything from how to enter a room and hold the door for others to how to acknowledge other students’ success even when feelings of envy or jealousy are involved. It’s an opportunity for them to discuss relevant issues and brainstorm solutions they can put into play if and when the real thing happens outside of class.

Health and Wellness

Health and Wellness is a class designed to help our 6th graders understand the social, emotional and physical changes of growing adolescence. The goal of the class is to help 6th graders think constructively, make sound decisions, solve problems, access information, and take responsibility for their own lives. The class gives them a practical toolkit to manage future changes and challenges as they move through early adolescence.

Course Listings

We deeply understand the middle school learning experience. A vast part of that experience is the learning foundation set in 6th grade. As caring educators, we hope the adjustment to middle school for students is a comfortable, and engaging change. We carefully design enrichment classes that foster spirited growth in academics and character. We believe all of these courses cultivate a smooth transition to Teel Campus and middle school life, and promote overall healthy academic and social growth.

Electives

List of 3 items.

  • Chess

    Chess enrichment is a hands-on activity for players of all abilities and experience. Players spend the majority of the time playing scheduled games with their classmates.  Additionally, students receive introductory instruction in the strategy and tactics used in the beginning, middle, and endgame. Besides regularly scheduled matches, students play exhibitions, bughouse, and have an end of quarter tournament.  
  • Drawing

    In this class, students learn about the basic elements of drawing such as line, shape, value, color, and perspective while working towards their personal drawing goals. Through the use of an individual sketchbook to observe progress, students focus on developing personal creativity, technical skill, and the ability to draw what they see.
  • Outdoor Education

    In Outdoor Education, students will build and cook over campfires and cookstoves, construct  shelters  from natural materials and using tarps, learn the basics of orienteering and mapmaking, (both with compass and GPS), practice essential knots, identify fish, birds,  animals,  and their tracks, build snare traps and deadfalls, make kites, and play outdoor games.

Required Courses

List of 5 items.

  • Civility Seminar

    Civility is an important theme in our Middle School. In this enrichment, 6th grade students will be instructed in what civility is, examine examples of it in everyday life, and learn how to cultivate civility by small actions in school.

    The class will conduct this learning through case studies, where students will discuss and grapple with many civility dilemmas that appear in the lives of 6th graders. Students will be enrolled in this course for 4.5 weeks during the third or fourth quarter. The remaining 4.5 weeks in the quarter will be spent in Design Thinking and Innovation.
  • Design Thinking and Innovation

    Design thinking is a creative approach to finding meaningful solutions using logic, imagination and reasoning. This way of thinking is applicable to all classes, disciplines and life!  Through innovative problem solving, students will collaborate with their peers to solve a challenge while working through the design thinking process. 

    Throughout the course, students will be given opportunities to work in the RxNT Tech Center and become familiar with the school's 3D printers and laser system.
  • Health and Wellness

    The Middle School Health and Wellness program supports the philosophy and mission of Severn School by helping to educate the whole child. The curriculum encompasses character education and its purpose is to help our students develop good social relationships.

    No grades are assigned for Health and Wellness classes. They are conducted in an informal manner in order to foster free-flowing discussion. The goal is to help students think constructively, make sound decisions, solve problems, access information, and take responsibility for their own lives.
  • Study Skills

    This course focuses on maximizing learning by making the best use of: our minds, our habits, and the resources available at school. Students will cover topics such as strategies to study and remember information effectively, how to prioritize and plan in the short and long term, and routines and habits for organization. They will learn about the support available at Severn, such as regular study halls and extra help sessions with teachers.  Students will also practice advocating for themselves by communicating confidently and appropriately with their teachers. At the end of the quarter, students will leave armed with the tools and knowledge to take charge of their education.
  • Study Hall

    One of the biggest challenges for new sixth graders is simply having the time to do their work. Between after school activities and social obligations, time is a precious commodity. Study Hall gives them dedicated time to complete their homework on campus and to reach out to teachers if needed. While this may seem like a simple idea, it is integral to the success of new students. Building this supervised study time into their schedule helps them establish good routines now and for the future.

Lower School

Preschool-Grade 5
Chesapeake Campus
1185 Baltimore Annapolis Blvd
Arnold, MD 21012
410-647-7700

Upper School

Grade 6-12
Teel Campus
Severna Park, MD 21146
410-647-7700