The Middle School years at Oakcrest are filled with wonder and joy, allowing the girls freedom to explore, use their imaginations, and grow in curiosity.  As they put down roots, they learn about authentic friendship, freedom, and responsibility.  Our pedagogy is age-appropriate, respects our students’ development, and is reflected in our liberal arts curriculum.  Specifically, in 6th grade, students learn the art of observation, categorization, and memorization and in 7th and 8th grades, students learn to think clearly and well. They experience everything from hands-on lessons in Science, memorized recitations in English, and analysis of events in History.  They are taught to appreciate God’s work throughout the world, making connections between the different disciplines and understanding the integration of knowledge.  Entering Oakcrest in Middle School prepares students well for the Upper School years by laying the foundation of the skills necessary to succeed and advance. 

Grade Level Experiences

Grade 6: An Acorn Setting Down Deep Roots

Do not train a child to learn by force or harshness; but direct them to it by what amuses their minds, so that you may be better able to discover with accuracy the peculiar bent of the genius of each.”
Virtues: Order, generosity of heart, attitude of wonder
Theme: Getting to know our new home 
Grade Level Experiences: 6th Grade Club is a weekly lunch club spearheaded by the Deans during which the newest members of our community learn "what it means to be an Oakie." This club helps integrate them into our school culture all while helping them build friendships along the way. 

Grade 7: A Friend for Others

“A friend is another self.”  —Aristotle 

Virtues: Friendship, kindness, perseverance
Theme: Friendship 
Grade Level Experiences: 7th Grade Paint and Talk is an opportunity for the class to foster their friendships while spending time learning something new. The students spend an afternoon together following along with a skilled professional as they create a beautiful masterpiece while enjoying an atmosphere of building friendship with others. 
The 7th graders will also work on a Medieval Portfolio, an interdisciplinary year-long exploration of the medieval world.  Students will create a portfolio across the curriculum which demonstrates a deep and integrated knowledge of the medieval world, from which so much of our Western culture derives.

Grade 8: A Champion of Freedom and Responsibility

“There is no truth more thoroughly established than that there exists in the course of Nature, an indissoluble union between virtue and happiness.” 
—George Washington 

Virtues: Reflection, loyalty, justice
Theme: Branching Out 
Grade Level Experiences: A well-loved tradition at Oakcrest, the Most Courageous American Tournament will remain a hallmark of the 8th grade year. This year-long competition explores the lives of Americans who exhibited courage in a wide variety of situations. It culminates in a final showdown where the entire school casts a vote to decide the year's most courageous American. The true lessons are learned along the way, however, giving the students many examples to draw upon for inspiration when they are faced with difficult situations. 
The entire class will embark on a grand adventure – the Old Rag Hike and Bonfire – towards the end of the year.  After ascending this beloved local hiking destination, the students will finish the evening with dinner and a bonfire under the stars. 
Why start at Oakcrest in Middle School? Elena Kilner, Oakcrest alumna and mother of a Middle School Oakie, explains the many benefits of joining Oakcrest in the formative Middle School years. 

Course Guide and Textbook Lists

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