E L E C T I V E      O F F E R I N G S

Avon Middle School strives to challenge students to reach their optimal potential in character building, social/emotional development, academic excellence, citizenship, and service. Opportunities provided through curricular studies and extracurricular activities support students through stretching their thinking and increasing their exposure to new ideas, experiences, and concepts for possible career-pathways and for being well-rounded adolescents.
With this in mind and in addition to the core academic courses, the school has developed several elective course opportunities to encourage students to expand their learning and explore various fields of study in eight academic departments. Availability of elective offerings is dependent upon sign-up for courses as well as class numbers and staffing during spring scheduling. Please note the following guidelines for course electives:
  • Students in Grades Six, Seven, and Eight can schedule for Band, Choir or Orchestra courses.
  • Students in Grades Seven and Eight can schedule for any available elective courses, except for...
  • Students in Grade Eight, the only grade level permitted to schedule for Physical Education, Physical Science, and World Language courses.

LANGUAGE ARTS

CREATIVE WRITING: This creative writing class is designed for students who wish to explore their imagination and focus on fictional writing. Students will have an opportunity to develop several short stories and improve their writing skills through writing workshops. This course will allow students to respond to a variety of prompts, including an opportunity to explore fantasy and science fiction, as they create their own world and characters from a different realm, as well as historical fiction, as they rewrite history and focus on the effects historical events have on society. Students will also have the opportunity to hone their presentation skills as they share their original work with classmates. Many students enrolled in Creative Writing also enjoy being involved with the club titled Power of the Pen, an interscholastic writing competition (semester course).

MUSIC  

These performance classes are treated as other course offering and are not considered extra-curricular in content or per scheduling. Typically, prior playing experience is required for the instrumental courses, while the choral classes may require auditioning. Performing at scheduled school concerts is a large portion of a student's musical experience and course grade / assessment. Grade-level music courses are listed below:
  BAND (Brass, Woodwind, Percussion)   Band 6; Band 7; Band 8   (each a year course)
  ORCHESTRA (Violin, Viola, Cello, Bass)   Orchestra 6; Orchestra 7; Orchestra 8   (each a year course)
  CHOIR (Soprano, Alto, Tenor, Bass)   Choir 6; Choir 7; Choir 8   (each a year course)
  MUSIC WRITING     (Grade 7 or 8)   (semester course)
  BEGINNER PIANO (Grade 7 or 8)    (semester course)

 

PHYSICAL EDUCATION   

These courses are offered to students in Grade Eight, and do not have to be taken in middle school if the student plans to participate in high school (OHSAA) interscholastic athletics or the Avon High School Mighty Eagles Marching Band. Otherwise, these classes must be taken at the middle school (preferably) or at the high school.
Physical Education A and B are high school-level courses assigned credit (0.25 each), with final grades appearing on the high school transcript but not factored into the high school cumulative GPA.
PHYSICAL EDUCATION A: This course is scheduled for the first half of the school year with content and activities varying from Physical Education B. Units and lesson include fitness, soccer, speedball, frisbee golf, ultimate frisbee, "backyard games" (e.g., cornhole and kan-jam), kickball, cricket, badminton, table tennis, volleyball, and yoga (semester course).
PHYSICAL EDUCATION B: This course is scheduled for the second half of the school year with content and activities varying from Physical Education A. Units and lessons include fitness, basketball, bowling, pickleball, floor hockey, flag/ultimate football, cooperative learning, team building, track & field, "backyard games" (e.g., shuffleboard and spikeball), movement patterns, yoga, lacrosse, and softball (semester course).
 

SCIENCE

ZOOLOGY DISCOVERY: Have you ever wondered how jellyfish survive without a brain? Or have you pondered why earthworms have several hearts? If you have an interest in learning about various living organisms and how their bodies function, then this class is for you! Zoology Discovery is an introductory and survey class, covering topics that include cells, anatomy, physiology, ecology, and habitats. Students will also learn how scientists classify microorganisms, insects, birds, reptiles, amphibians, and mammals. Time will be dedicated to examining the many fascinating aspects of the Animal Kingdom and what makes these organisms so wonderful and unique (semester course).

SOCIAL STUDIES

OUR WORLD: THEN & NOW: Take the historical perspective on technology and architecture and apply it to the present and future. History is writing and rewriting itself. This unique social studies course will focus on past historical movements, political forces, philosophies, religions, and societal ideals, and how these concepts and events have shaped our planet today and possibly the future. Various topics, themes, cultures, and civilizations will be presented and examined (semester course).

TECHNOLOGY/VOCATIONAL

TECH ANIMATION: Relying upon imagination and creativity, students taking this course will design descriptive and engaging stories through the use of storyboard methods and techniques through collaborative teamwork. Students will learn the features, functions, and capabilities of the school's animation laboratory for the purpose of producing animation features that contain unique characters, motions, gestures, interactions, and scenery accompanied by synchronized voice overs for their audio-animated characters (semester course).
TECH COMPUTER PROGRAMMING: Students will gain an understanding of programming skills in common languages using electronics as a platform to practice and replicate code. Within the course, students will develop skills in computer programming, electronics, problem solving, and design thinking (semester course)
TECH DIGITAL MEDIA ART: This course uses an integrated approach to technology and the students’ lives. Students will focus on learning the fundamental principles and processes of computer-based design using a variety of traditional and non-traditional media with an emphasis on problem-solving and creative exploration. Using such media as high-definition video, sound, animation, installation art, print and digital photography, students work in a digitally integrated computer laboratory and studio environment to gain hands-on experiences (semester course).
TECH PRE-ENGINEERING: Students will learn the fundamentals of engineering including introductory terms, concepts and practices as well as three-dimensional design concepts and related principles. Students will learn and utilize problem solving and design-thinking skills to complete tasks as well as create new objects and works. Concepts and skills include but are not limited to drafting, techincal drafting, three-dimensional design, problem-solving skills, and design thinking (semester course).  
TECH ROBOTICS DESIGN: The purpose of this course is to teach students the basics of robotics. Students will be utilizing Lego Mindstorm kits, Mindstorm software, and various Lego Robotics materials. Students will be introduced to basic programming as well as problem solving strategies. The course will involve students in the development, building and programming of LEGO Mindstorm robots.  Students will work hands-on in teams to design, build, program and document their progress. Topics may include motor control, gear ratios, torque, friction, sensors, timing, program loops, logic gates, decision-making, and timing sequences. Student designed robots will be programmed to compete in various challenges as developed by First Lego League (semester course).
VIDEO/MEDIA PRODUCTIONS:  Students will have the opportunity to help design and create the pages for the school yearbook.  Students will work together to select yearbook covers to designing the pages of picture layouts.  Along with the work on the yearbook, students will work on how to produce videos by creating our daily announcements for the entire student body to view (semester course).
VOCATIONAL CAREER EXPLORATIONS:  Life skills with real world applications and hands on experiences will be offered to provide students an opportunity to discover interests to guide their career choices in the future.  Units / projects may include: Culinary and Baking skills, Woodworking skills, Wiring skills, Building skills, Gardening skills

 

VISUAL ART   

Visual art courses encompass a wide variety of foundational artistic styles and types, ranging from two-dimensional design to mixed media and three-dimensional forms. Creativity, expression, and technique development are encouraged and stressed. The four paired and rotating courses include the following:
STUDIO ART Grade 7 (semester course)
STUDIO ART Grade 8 (semester course) 
The purpose of the two Studio Arts courses is to introduce students to many forms of art. Each course will address similar skills and goals while creating completely different projects per semester. Students will be drawing, painting, sculpting, printing and designing. We will experience two and three-dimensional problem solving through both fine art and craft. Students will use and identify the elements and principles of design by participating in various enrichment lessons.
Our approach to the visual art classes include: (1) Studio Art (creating art), (2) Art History (understanding art as part of our past and of other cultures, (3) Aesthetics (defining and valuing art),  (4) Art Criticism (observe, describe, analyze, interpret, and judge art).

WORLD LANGUAGE

World Language courses are designed for qualifying students in Grade Eight (see HONORS COURSES tab). French, Mandarin, and Spanish are high school-level courses assigned credit (1.00 each), with final grades appearing on the high school transcript but not factored into the high school cumulative GPA. In Grades 9 through 12, students can continue taking French, Mandarin, or Spanish up to level five (years), or elect to take another world language.
World Languages are aligned with the Ohio Department of Education's World Language Standards and meet NCAA eligibility requirements. A fee and workbook may be required.
FRENCH 1: This course introduces students to the basics of the French language through the four skill areas: listening, speaking, reading, and writing. The early stages of study are spent exclusively in developing pronunciation, building vocabulary, and learning the basics of French language structure and culture. This class strives to help students recognize cross-cultural similarities and differences and to understand how other cultures influence their own. The focus of French 1 is to provide students with the skills they need to create language for communication (year course).
MANDARIN 1: The purpose of Mandarin is for students to speak, read, and write Chinese at a basic level. This course focuses on the Chinese Pinyin system and simplified characters. By the end of the course, students should be able to (1) demonstrate correct pronunciation of the official Chinese language, (2) carry out simple conversations in Chinese on a limited range of daily-life topics, and (3) demonstrate basic understanding of grammar rules in reading and writing. With the burgeoning Chinese economy and influence in global affairs, learning Mandarin could be advantageous for those considering entering a business field (year course).
SPANISH 1: This course stresses the beginning development of the following language skills: listening, speaking, reading, and writing in the language within the context of the culture. The class has an emphasis on listening and speaking skills integrated with reading and writing. Vocabulary and grammar are not studied in isolation, but are incorporated into the development of all the communication skills. Spanish 1 strives to help students recognize cross-cultural similarities and differences as well as to understand how other cultures influence their own (year course).