Learning and Leading Start with Community
Each fall kicks off with an adventure that becomes a metaphor for growth all year.
- Sixth Grade: Staying overnight at the Farm School is a rite of passage where students take on responsibilities of a working farm.
- Seventh Grade: Students band together to climb Cardigan Mountain.
- Eighth Grade: Outward Bound on Thompson Island encourages teamwork and a sense of adventure.
Advisory Groups—with a mentor teacher and small groups of students—nurture the bonds and well-being that are foundational for learning.
Experiment with Science
- Sixth Grade: Students discover how circuits work and gather before sunrise to observe the night sky. They design, build, test, and modify solar cars to achieve peak performance.
- Seventh and Eighth Grades: Students move into the lab to apply the scientific method to questions about osmosis, photosynthesis, precipitate change, and reactivity.
“I’m teaching students to think and write scientifically. It’s important to know how to learn information and then how to apply it successfully.”
—Sandra Trentowsky, science teacher
Discover the World in Social Studies
- Sixth Grade: Students examine the Civil Rights Movement through the lenses of the legal system, primary sources, music, and literature. They write their own script to perform at Freedom Night.
- Seventh and Eighth Grades: Students study geography and analyze how historic events impact the modern world. Topics include European expansion, the Atlantic slave trade, the American Revolution, U.S. westward expansion, U.S. immigration, and World War II.
- Eighth Grade: Students take a trip to Washington D.C. to explore museums, memorials, and how government works.
“The sixth grade Civil Rights project is like a mini-Capstone. Students choose what they want to study in-depth, they choose the project format, and they present me with a plan for accomplishing their goal.” —Dean Spencer, social studies teacher
Flourish in the Arts
- Sixth Grade: Students sample every media, rotating through classes in music, theater arts, digital technology, visual arts, and woodworking.
- Seventh and Eighth Grades: Each term, students choose from a wide variety of specialty topics, ranging from ceramics to blues guitar, from poetry performance to web design. Spring term is devoted to producing a musical, with electives in acting, set design, and theater tech.
“Arts electives let you expand to try things you’ve never done. Or you can do more of something you know you like. I tried knitting for the first time, and now I’m doing stand-up comedy.”
—Jacob, seventh grade
Become a Leader on the Field
All middle school students represent Belmont Day by competing in our interscholastic athletics program. Over the course of three seasons, students choose from 18 athletics offerings, learning important lessons about teamwork, sportsmanship, and leadership.
Take Pride in Clubs and Partnerships
All middle school students participate in two clubs each year. Possibilities include Model U.N., math club, Echo literary magazine, and Roots and Shoots service learning.
Middle school students also serve as the cross-graded partners for some of our youngest students. They meet regularly to read or do projects together.
“It’s lovely to see the middle school students connect with little ones. They enjoy being role models, while remembering back to when they were the younger partner.” —Kaleen Moriarty, sixth grade teacher
Graduate and Go to High School!
Starting in seventh grade, BDS guides families through the search process to identify best-fit schools for each student. Our graduates head to high school with confidence and excitement.
“Admissions officers appreciate BDS graduates as unique individuals who have a strong sense of self.” —Sarah Merrill, Director of High School Placement