Middle School Years


Each class is 2 hours. Each session is 8 classes (total of 16 hours)

We develop these reading, writing, and critical thinking skills through the study of classical and contemporary great books in their historical contexts. We do so by removing the artificial divide between literature and history. An interdisciplinary approach helps students understand the deeper underpinnings of civilizations, instead of simply memorizing isolated dates and events.

Course Description


Level 8 introduces students to literature about Modern history, including the American Civil War and global imperialism. This level emphasizes:

  • Identifying a text’s theme and examining its development over the arc of the narrative, including its relationship to the other elements of story
  • Analyzing the role of dialogue in character revelation and plot development, and how points-of-view (including the audience’s) create humor or suspense
  • Examining how story elements (setting, character, plot, theme, mood, e.t.c.) shape each other; denotative and connotative meanings of words and their effects on meaning, mood, and tone; analyzing how rhyme, sound, and form contribute to meaning; analyzing analogies and allusions to other texts such as myths or religious works; compare and contrasts different text forms and how these forms contribute to meaning
  • Writing and grammar instruction includes objective summary of texts; acknowledging alternate arguments; organizing reason and evidence logically; introducing specific claims, clear reasons, and detailed supporting evidence; using words, phrases, and clauses to cohesively clarify relationships between ideas; diagramming sentences; three-level outlining; practicing a formal style for analytical writing; using precise domain-specific language when making a claim.
  • Practice using language and story devices to write short stories, poetry, and personal narrative
  • Selected literature and history that intertwine in the Modern history (1850 to 2000)


Small Classes


There is maximum of 6 students per cohort (6:1 student-to-teacher ratio) to ensure personal attention.

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