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Science

The science program at Montgomery comprises five main strands that spiral PreK through 8th Grade. These strands are: Chemistry, Physics, Biology ( including Human Biology), Environmental and Earth Science ( including Space), and we are continuing to develop a STEM strand (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) that will include activities in each grade. We learn a lot of content in these five strand areas, but we are essentially a “hands on" program, where the application of skills is our main emphasis. Our ultimate aim is to inspire a love of science and to develop science students who are inquisitive, creative, innovative and also good problem solvers.

Lower School

The study of science in lower school introduces students to the scientific method, which includes observation, hypothesis formation, hypothesis testing, controlled experiments, measurement and conclusion drawing. Classroom demonstrations, discussions, field observations, and hands-on projects involve students in the learning experience. The students regularly use sophisticated science equipment and exciting learning activities provided through the Scott Foresman program of study. Students relate scientific content to their lives and to environmental issues. Enrichment activities include creek walks, field trips, classroom pets, hands-on projects, and Stem activities. The lower school curriculum has been designed to provide a strong foundation that spirals naturally into the middle school science program.

Middle School

A hands-on approach is the basis for the Middle School Science Program. Discussions include observation, hypothesis formation, hypothesis testing, controlled experiments, measurement and drawing conclusions. More focus is made on student learning from direct experience through lab experiments, student directed activities, classroom demonstrations, STEM activities and field observations. Communicating their experiences and observations is emphasized with increasing demands for scientific reporting, diagramming, and creating charts, graphs, and spreadsheets. Emphasis is placed on relating scientific content to the student’s lives, societal issues, and environment.

6TH GRADE SCIENCE

The sixth grade science program delves into topics of Hydrology, Geology, and Biology. Students are challenged to utilize and hone scientific process skills while exploring the structure, function, and processes of Earth and Life on Earth. Students work on analyzing and evaluating the changes observed and formulate understandings through hands-on activities and experiments. Students engage in comprehensive investigations and design projects that integrate knowledge, life-skills, creativity, and a sense of responsibility for the environment.

Some of the activities that students encounter in sixth grade include a qualitative investigation of water, the building and topographic mapping of watersheds, a water audit to address conservation issues, exploration of Earth’s structure and the development of the Theory of Plate Tectonics, building an Earthquake-proof structure, creating a taxonomic system and identification key, discovering the diversity of life-forms on Earth while developing proficiency in the use and care of microscopes. Montgomery School has assumed the role of stewards of the Pickering Creek that runs through the property. Students participate in stream assessments that provide accurate data for outside agencies including the World Water Monitoring Day’s collective database. An environmental initiative will focus on sustainable waters.

7TH GRADE SCIENCE

Our objective is to emphasize hands-on learning through structured inquiry. Most science lessons include activities that will engage and challenge our students. Hands-on learning is the best way for students to directly observe and understand science. It holds their attention on a personal level and encourages direct involvement and responsibility for their own learning. More importantly it allows the students to think for themselves and make connections to the outside world. By relating what we do in the classroom to real life applications and by using critical thinking exercises, we thoroughly assess our students’ comprehension of the concepts involved.

We are, essentially, a skills based program. In seventh grade, basic process skills needed for inquiry are emphasized: observing, measuring, calculating, classifying, predicting, inferring, sorting data, graphing and communicating. Advanced process skills and critical thinking are increasingly promoted. Content areas include an introduction to matter, changes in matter, including a full investigation into the gas laws, elements and the periodic table, Newton’s laws of motion, forces and energy, and human body systems with emphasis on reproduction. An environmental initiative will focus on sustainable human health.

At Montgomery we are focused on continually improving and evolving to provide a successful education for the 21st century. We are committed to expanding the Design and Technology element of our science curriculum. We have introduced several STEM projects where the student is the engineer. In Seventh grade some examples are: designing and building paper cars that will protect an egg in a crash and working in groups to build roller coasters. The students are encouraged to be innovative and creative while applying science concepts they have learned.

Field trips remain an important way to enhance and highlight the science we learn. In seventh grade we travel to Florida. Where we combine sustainable environmental education with our physical science program. We learn about the complexity of Earth’s ecosystem and inspire our students to become better stewards of our limited resources. We also emphasize physical science where real world applications of the physics we learn in the classroom are experienced. This includes a visit to a theme park to learn about Roller Coaster physics, and a trip to the Kennedy space station to learn about rocket launches and the space program.

8TH GRADE SCIENCE

Our objective is to emphasize hands-on learning through structured inquiry. Most science lessons include activities that will engage and challenge our students. Hands-on learning is the best way for students to directly observe and understand science. It holds their attention on a personal level and encourages direct involvement and responsibility for their own learning. More importantly it allows the students to think for themselves and make connections to the outside world. By relating what we do in the classroom to real life applications and by using critical thinking exercises we thoroughly assess our students’ comprehension of the concepts involved. We are, essentially, a skills based program.

In eighth grade, basic process skills are reinforced, advanced process skills are emphasized; posing questions, forming operational definitions, developing hypotheses, controlling variables, interpreting data, interpreting graphs, making models, drawing conclusions, designing experiments and critical thinking exercises. Content areas include magnetism and electromagnetism, electric charges andcurrent, electricity and magnetism at work, including an electromagnet investigation, chemical reactions, atoms and bonding, including an investigation in stoichiometry, acids bases and solutions, exploring materials, waves, light and sound.

At Montgomery we are focused on continually improving and evolving to provide a successful education for the 21st century. We are committed to expanding the Design and Technology element of our science curriculum. We have introduced several STEM projects where the student is the engineer. In eighth grade some examples are: designing and building solar powered cars and designing a way to power an island with renewable energies. The students are encouraged to be innovative and creative while applying science concepts they have learned. An environmental initiative will focus on sustainable energies.


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