Welcome to Middle School
AEC Upper School (Middle School/6th-8th Grade)
The next level of academic and community engagement for your pre-teen.
Now, as your child enters the pre-teen or early teenage years, you have a renewed sense of urgency about their academic achievement. College suddenly seems just around the corner.
AEC’s Upper School environment nurtures pre-teens as they negotiate the challenges of adolescence and provides the stimulation they need to stay focused and engaged.
Within the same physical learning environment as high schoolers, AEC middle schoolers are prepped to transition seamlessly into high school from day one. They are provided opportunities for independence, self-direction and responsibility as they build the skills necessary for high school, college and future careers.
Selective Class Sizes
Pre-teens naturally become hyper-aware of their social environment at this stage. Smaller class sizes help them feel more comfortable, engaged with their work and less preoccupied with how they are perceived by their peers.
Middle school and high school faculty are combined in the Upper School, offering middle school students more than a familiar face as they progress. If your child is advanced in certain subject areas, her or his teachers are prepared to offer advanced coursework, up to and including Honors or AP-level courses.
Technology and Maker Tools
All AEC students have access to one-to-world Apple devices as well as creative tools in our Startup Incubator, a makerspace where they begin to learn coding and apply design thinking to bring their ideas to life. These experiences prepare them for advanced coding and their capstone ACE project at the high school level.
Core and Focus Area Courses
As at the high school level, core courses involve deep reading, critical analysis and discussion-based learning. Learning is hands-on, focusing on the application of skills and concepts, not just the memorization of facts and theory.
In addition, we begin to introduce Focus Area Courses to students at this level. Exposure to these electives in 6th grade provides an opportunity for students to explore their interests. They begin to select courses in 7th and 8th grade as precursors to a greater focus in high school.
- Tech Biz
- Media, Arts & Communications (MAC)
- Jewish Studies
Path to High School
AEC helps middle schoolers prepare cognitively, emotionally, socially and physically for high school and teenage years through a variety of programs.
In this homeroom experience, teachers engage students in reflective dialogue each day to discuss what’s going on in their lives, their highs and lows, in a safe, intimate environment.
Counselors meet with students to discuss a variety of life skills to help them transition from being members of a family to members of society.
In partnership with our EdTech Coordinator, middle school faculty help students view their online activity as part of the digital community, consider the benefits and risks of digital engagement, and take proper precautions.
Instruction progresses throughout 6th, 7th and 8th grades from discussions around changes to the body and related knowledge vital to entering young adulthood.
Your child’s enthusiasm for special interests - such as performing arts - is growing, as is their desire to connect with groups around those interests. AEC provides the opportunities she or he craves through clubs during the school day, athletics, and academic competitions that give your child the opportunity to achieve and build confidence.
AEC also organizes trips for middle schoolers to engage with nature and each other.
Travel is on hold for the 2020-21 school year due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Athletic opportunities at AEC include:
- Cross Country
Respect and Empowerment
Mutual respect (kavod) is offered equally to everyone at AEC. Your child will have a voice here, and we will encourage them to use it for the benefit of all. This builds confidence. It empowers our students to feel less afraid to challenge themselves to grow academically and personally.
At AEC, we provide opportunities for pre-teens to exercise their leadership skills, from participation on the student council, to welcoming new students as ambassadors, and simply being heard when they share ideas they believe will strengthen our community.
Cell Phone Policy
6th and 7th graders are not permitted to use cell phones during the school day and 8th graders are allowed limited cell usage at breaks and lunch. This is part of our strategy to keep your child both focused on their academic work and safe from cyber bullying, distressing web content, and other digital threats.
Safety and Security
AEC is a safe environment not only because of our investment in security personnel, technologies and practices. Students also experience safety through connectedness with one another, our staff and faculty, and the values we share.
Staff and faculty in AEC’s Upper School understand how challenging this period is in a child’s life. They will pour their attention, support and instructional skill into ensuring your child is prepared for high school and beyond.
Learn more about your investment in this important work.
Ready to apply?