Course Guides

  • KSTM Course Guide and General Overview

    Omaha Public Schools Vision

    Every student. Every day. Prepared for success.

    King Science and Technology Middle Vision

    Highly effective teachers, high performing students, leading the way in Science and Technology.

    Leadership Team

    Ms. Jane Laughlin

    Principal

    Ms. LaDeidre Jackson

    Assistant Principal, DP

    Mr. Odell Santos

    Assistant Principal, AD

     

    Ms. Nicole Benson      

    Dean of Students

     

    Ms. Roxanna Silva

    Dean of Students

     

    Ms. Kelcey Schmitz

    Instructional Facilitator

     

    School Counselors

    Ms. Kim Thompson

     

    Mrs. Alex Hixson

     

    History of KSTM

    Martin Luther King Middle School opened in September 1973 and represented a new concept in education. It was the first middle school for the Omaha Public Schools, and it offered 800 students in the North Omaha community access to industrial arts, homemaking, art, and science. The school was built to provide a learning program tailored to the needs of fourth, fifth, and sixth grade students. In 1976, when the Omaha Public Schools' Desegregation Plan was implemented, Martin Luther King Middle School reflected a new concept in education; it became one of two ninth grade centers.

    In 1988, Martin Luther King Middle School moved to its new location at 3720 Florence Blvd. Today, the King Science and Technology Middle serves as a district-wide middle school giving all students from across the Omaha area an opportunity to attend. Students in grades 6-8 study astronomy, health sciences, and zoology. Each grade level engages in science lessons in renovated science laboratories. King also has a planetarium, where students explore the solar system and the universe. In addition to the extensive science curriculum, students are involved in an exceptional offering of the core content areas of reading, language arts, mathematics, and social studies.

     

    Non-Discrimination Clause

    Omaha Public Schools does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, sex (including pregnancy), marital status, sexual orientation, disability, age, genetic information, gender identity, gender expression, citizenship status, veteran status, political affiliation or economic status in its programs, activities and employment and provides equal access to the Boy Scouts and other designated youth groups. The following individual has been designated to accept allegations regarding non-discrimination policies: Superintendent of Schools, 3215 Cuming Street, Omaha, NE 68131 (531 299-9822). The following persons have been designated to handle inquiries regarding the non-discrimination policies: Director for the Office of Equity and Diversity, 3215 Cuming St, Omaha, NE 68131 (531 299-0307).

    King Science and Technology Middle Information

    School Hours

    KSTM will run on the OPS middle school time schedule. All students, grades sixth through eighth will start at 7:40 a.m. and end at 3:05 p.m.

    Before school starts, students interested in breakfast will be served in the cafeteria from 7:10 a.m. to 8:00 a.m. Students are not permitted in the building prior to 7:10 a.m.

    After school clubs, intramurals, and activities will run from 3:15 p.m. to approximately 5:00 p.m. KSTM Middle School offers various after school clubs and intramural activities (see last section of this Course Catalog). For seventh and eighth graders, after school athletic practices will conclude by 5:00 (unless there is an away game). Late buses will depart at 5:15 p.m. Any eligible transportation student may sign up for the late bus. Students are not allowed in the building after 3:15 unless they are part of a supervised school activity or athletic event.

    Block Scheduling

    All students follow a basic alternating day block schedule. Rather than all classes meeting daily, classes meet every other day for extended “blocks” of time. This alternate day schedule is also referred to as “A/B”. There are four blocks or periods each day. Because of the alternate day schedule students may take eight classes at a time. Four classes are on A days and the other four classes are on B days.

    Some advantages of this block schedule include reduction in the number of classes students must attend and prepare for each day, and extended amounts of time for learning to apply knowledge through hands on activities, group discussions, projects, and performance assessments. Block scheduling provides time for students who need more or less time to engage in learning; greater opportunities for some students to be accelerated; an increase of uninterrupted time for learning activities, extensive practice, and laboratory work; and blocks of time to allow and encourage teachers to use active teaching strategies and promote greater student involvement.

    New Student Orientation & Open House

    All new students to KSTM will participate in an all-day orientation program the first day of school. Student orientations will be held in August to provide students with knowledge about the school and programming. Also, students and parents will be invited to Wildcat Welcome to answer questions, review course schedules, and to enhance familiarity with new processes (e.g., location of lockers and practice with their combination lock). During the summer, we host a Wildcat Welcome Camp filled with fun hands-on preparation activities for middle school. Wildcat Welcome Camp is for incoming sixth graders.

    Advisory

    Advisory is the time set aside in the schedule for students to be engaged with a single staff member in building relationships, setting and tracking academic goals, and developing social emotional skills. This is time well spent in supporting student success and building connectedness. KSTM Advisory activities give students a chance to focus attention on character development, decision making, and life skills.

    Content Standards

    All courses are based upon content standards that align with the state of Nebraska academic content standards and for those of the Omaha school district. Content standards are what a student should know and be able to do in each course. Teachers will also know how to inform and improve instruction using a variety of assessments. Mastery of content standards is also measured through diagnostic assessments using an information management computer system called MAP (Measures of Academic Progress). Nebraska Student-Centered Assessment System (NSCAS) measures student proficiency. Student grades will be based in large part on the mastery of each course’s content standards. Students will have multiple opportunities to master the content standards during the course through reteaching activities. In addition, students who master the content standards quickly will have opportunities for extension activities that expand learning.

    OPS Proficiency Scale                                                                                    OPS Grading Scale

    Advanced

    4

     

    A

    3.26-4.00

    Approaching Advanced

    3.5

     

    B

    2.51-3.25

    Proficient

    3

     

    C

    1.76-2.50

    Approaching Proficient

    2.5

     

    D

    1.01-1.75

    Basic

    2

     

    F

    0.00-1.00

    Approaching Basic

    1.5

     

     

     

    Below Basic

    1

     

     

     

    Failing

    0

     

     

     

     

    Special Education

    Special education programs and services are provided to students as outlined in Individual Education Programs (IEPs). A range of programs and services are available at KSTM and include small group intervention/remediation, co-taught regular education classes, vision and hearing resource services, speech and language therapy, and occupational and physical therapy. In addition, a self-contained alternate curriculum program is available. The special education teacher assigned as a student’s IEP manager works with the school staff and parent to coordinate all services.

    High Ability/G.A.T.E. Program

    The program for gifted and talented education (G.A.T.E.) recognizes that students with academic proficiency have educational needs that differ from those of their same age peers. While these students require the basic knowledge taught in a regular school program and need the chance to develop socially by interacting with other students, they also require differentiated learning experiences that challenge them and are appropriate to their needs. Therefore, we provide differentiated options that are integrated with the regular school program. Differentiation is a part of all courses.

    Occasionally non-graded pullouts are scheduled that are weekly or biweekly mini courses to prepare students for various academic competitions (History Day, Academic Pentathlon.). Students are pulled from different classes, so no class is missed more than once or twice a month. Membership on academic teams is based on proficiency.

    KSTM’s High Ability program also sponsors various all-school enrichment activities that are offered to anyone who wishes to participate. All High Ability activities are curriculum-related, offer opportunities that go beyond the regular classroom, promote creativity, and build on problem solving and divergent thinking skills.              

    Counseling Program

    Middle school counselors work with students in the classroom, as well as individually and in small groups.

    They focus on:

    • Development of a Personal Learning Plan
    • Exploration of careers and post-secondary opportunities
    • Self-awareness
    • Interventions to support academic success
    • Middle and high school transition

    Counselor collaboration with families continues to be critical to ensure students attend school regularly, stay on grade level and transition smoothly to high school.

     

    School counselors support students in preparing for:

    School/College (Academic Domain)

    Through classroom curriculum, group activities and individual sessions, school counselors guide all students toward academic success and post-secondary education goals.

     

    Work (Career Domain)

    School counselors use many types of activities to introduce all students to a wide variety of careers. Interest inventories, guest speakers, field trips, job shadows and career fairs are some of the opportunities available to students.

     

    Life (Social/Emotional Domain)

    Students are sometimes challenged with the demands of school and life. Decision-making, conflict resolution, problem solving, and healthy relationships are some of the topics school counselors discuss with students.

     

    The OPS School Counseling division provides a comprehensive, strengths-based program aligned with the American School Counselor Association National Model and the Nebraska Department of Education School Counseling Model. Counselors provide academic, career and personal/social support, as well as classroom guidance to all students from pre-kindergarten through 12th grade. The program is designed to be both proactive and responsive to the unique needs of individual students. Each OPS student is assigned to a school counselor who monitors progress and provides necessary support. This may include information about extended

    learning opportunities, individual counseling, or referral services. Parents are encouraged to

    contact their student’s counselor for information and resources.

     

    School Social Worker: The Social Worker will promote and enhance the overall academic

    mission by providing services that strengthen home/school/community partnerships and

    alleviate barriers to learning. The Social Worker significantly contributes to the development of

    a healthy, safe and caring environment by advancing the understanding of the emotional and

    social development of children and the influences of family, community, and cultural

    differences on student success and by implementing effective intervention strategies.

    Integrated into all major functions are home, school, and community assimilation; diversity and

    cultural competence; dropout prevention; and adherence to federal and state statutes;

    professional development and practices and the National Association of Social Workers Code of Conduct.

     

    Course Change Guidelines

    Requests to drop a course will be initiated to the school counselor by the student or parent/guardian.

    Procedures for requesting a course change:

    1. Conversation with the parent/guardian.
    2. Fill out counselor request QR code or email counselor.
    3. Counselor conferencing with teacher, student, and parent/guardian
    4.  Problem solving with all effected parties.

    *The first step is to navigate through the schedule change. If it is determined that other faculty needs to be included, please use the “Schedule Change/Request to Drop a Course” form. Please see School Counseling for a copy of the OPS Schedule Change/Request to Drop a Course form.

    Course Placement Appeals

    All secondary Omaha Public Schools offer procedures for appealing course placement (i.e., Honors, Adv, etc.). Each building may have specific forms and deadlines; however, the following general procedures shall apply:

    Level One: Counselor, Assistant Principal-Data Processor, or Principal

    A student or parent with a course placement appeal may first discuss the matter with the counselor or building administrator involved, with the object of resolving the matter informally.

    Level Two: Chief Academic Officer (Department of Curriculum, Instruction and Assessment )

    If the course placement appeal is not resolved at Level One and the individual still wishes to pursue the appeal, he/she may formalize the appeal in writing addressed to the Assistant Superintendent of Curriculum, Instruction and Assessment at 3215 Cuming Street, Omaha, NE 68131.

    Level Three: Superintendent

    If the appeal is not resolved at Level Two and the individual still wishes to pursue the        

    appeal, he/she may formalize the appeal to the superintendent of schools after receiving a written response from the Assistant Superintendent of Curriculum, Instruction and Assessment.

    These steps shall be taken in a timely manner to accommodate the registration of courses for the school year in question

    6th Grade Course Catalog

    Sample Schedule

    Block

    A Day

    Block

    B Day

    1/2

    Language Arts

    1/2

    Semester Elective 3

    Adv

    Wildcat Block

    Adv

    Wildcat Block

    3/4

    Physical Education 6

    Intro to College and Careers 6

    3/4

     

    Semester Elective 1

    5/6

    Math

    5/6

    Science

    7/8

    Semester Elective 2

    7/8

    Social Studies

    Required Core Classes

    Math 6 (040041 / 040042)

    This course covers the 6th grade mathematics content standards. Students will work with integers, fractions, decimals and percent’s, study metric and standard systems of measurement, apply properties of geometry, use data analysis, and solve problems involving multiple-step equations.

    Duration: Yearlong Course

    English Language Arts Grade 6 (010061 / 010062)

    This course supports student mastery of sixth grade writing standards and focuses on developing and applying students' knowledge in language and composition. Students will develop skills in writing, speaking, listening, and multiple literacies as appropriate to this grade level.

    Duration: Yearlong Course

    Science 6 (060091 / 060092)

    This course continues the standards of scientific inquiry, as well as the integration of unifying concepts and processes in science experiences. In this course, the emphasis will be placed on Earth structures and processes, Earth's history, energy, structure and function of living systems, flow of matter and energy in ecosystems, and biodiversity. Students will be taught in a fully equipped science lab. This course will integrate electronic media and communication skills in its content.

    Duration: Yearlong Course

     

    Social Studies 6 (035021 / 035022)

    This course examines the ancient world by studying Western Europe, Egypt, Sub-Saharan Africa, and Latin America. Special attention is given to geography, history, economics, culture and the government in these regions.

    Duration: Yearlong Course

    Required Specialized Courses

    Physical Education 6 (070141 / 070142)

    This course is designed to include a wide variety of sporting activities and teach the qualities of sportsmanship, competition, and fitness. It includes learning the rules and regulations for the major sports of volleyball, wrestling, basketball, soccer, and track and field events. Students also participate in a variety of leisure and lifetime activities including badminton, aerobics and more. Students are not required to dress out but should have tennis shoes on for PE day.

    Duration: Yearlong Course

    Intro to College & Careers 6 (120271/1202725)

    Students learn how to effectively explore careers while using the Nebraska Career Education Model and related resources.  Student will learn the vocabulary and expectations of effective academic and career planning.  A focus will be to discover the relationship between personal-social qualities, interests and skills to a wide variety of careers and post secondary options to choose from.  Emphasis will be given to learn, with opportunities to practice, the Nebraska Career Readiness Standards of Practice, which are current expectations in today's workplace.  Students will draw upon these conclusions to implement a Personal Learning Plan to transition into high school with a broad career cluster focus

    Duration: Yearlong Course

    Semester Academy Exploration choices:

    *Pick 1 or both

    Health Careers Exploration 1 (074301)

    Introduction to Health is an exploratory course that will cover various topics related to understanding health. Student will learn about behaviors that will keep their body healthy and free from disease. They will study skeletal and muscle groups and how they interact using 3-D technology. They will also use computers to study various body systems and functions.

    Duration: Semester Course

    Intro to Animal Habitats (060011)

    Students will develop an understanding of animals and their habitats through active research and will observe and collect data to communicate their understanding. They will investigate life cycles of animals within the animal’s habitat and the interdependence of animals with their environment.

    Duration: Semester Course

    Semester Electives:

    Art 6 (115021)

    This course examines artists' world views. Enduring understandings and ideas include: Art reveals aesthetic theories; Artists create art from multiple perspectives of time, place and culture revealing aesthetic theories; Artistic forms follow function throughout time; Critical processes identify aesthetic theories; and Art reflects the values and beliefs of a civilization/society. Students will play the role of artist, philosopher, historian, and archeologist to explore world art throughout time.

    Duration: Semester Course

    Anthropology (036061)

    This course will focus on projects based on Ancient Civilizations through Medieval Civilizations.  This course will integrate the following content standards throughout the school year:  maps/globes, culture, history and geography, economics, citizenship, and government.  This course will integrate electronic media and communication skills in its content.

    Duration: Semester Course

    MS Service Learning (038401)

    This course is a hands-on study of the practice and intent of service learning, the integration of community service, and related academic study for 6th grade.  Students will spend one quarter actively developing, planning, implementing, and evaluating service learning experience.  Principals of civic engagement will be added to provide students with a well-rounded learning experience.  Teachers are advised to have attended the UNO Service Learning Academy or received training in service learning or project based learning.

    Duration: Semester Course

    Exploring Robotics 6 (170471)

    Exploring Robotics 6 is an introduction to robotics, engineering, programming, problem solving, and team dynamics.

    Duration: Semester Course

    Speech 6 (025151)

    This course builds on the fundamentals of speech and debate. This course continues to focus on higher level research and presentation skills and allows students additional hands-on experiences to polish their verbal presentation and listening abilities.  Sixth grade students will recite poetry and plays with expression, and research and develop persuasive speech.                                

    Duration: Semester Course

    General Vocal Music 6 (195061)

    In this course sixth grade students will explore music as part of everyday life, including studying various styles, understanding musical elements, and experimenting with aspects of performance.

    Duration: Semester Course

    Computer Applications II (130011)

    After taking Computer Apps I, this middle-level course is designed to emphasize digital citizenship, basic computer operations, word processing applications, spreadsheet applications, presentation applications, and technology communication tools. Students will master keyboarding skills; compose, create, edit, and format word processing documents; organize and manipulate data in a spreadsheet; and prepare a formal presentation.

    Duration: Semester Course

    Chorus 6(195081/195082)

    In this course sixth grade students will continue to develop their skill for reading and singing two and three-part octavo music.  This emphasis is on vocal ensemble performance.  There will be required performances.

    Duration: Yearlong Course

    Continue with one of the following elective options:

    Band 6 (195041 / 195042)

    This course is a band ensemble for sixth grade students who are continuing instruction on a brass, woodwind, or percussion instrument. Basic music concepts will be advanced as the student learns to read music and develop skills in playing their instrument of choice. A method book is used as the lesson guide. Performances will be required. Prerequisite: one-year previous instruction.

    Duration: Yearlong Course

    Strings 6 (195021 / 195022)

    This course is the string ensemble for sixth grade students who are continuing instruction on violin, viola, cello, or string bass. Basic music concepts will be advanced as the student learns to read music and develop skills in playing their instrument of choice. A method book is used as the lesson guide. Performances will be required. Prerequisite: two years previous instruction

    Duration: Yearlong Course

     

    Enrichment Courses:

    *Students will be placed in the following enrichment class options based upon test scores, 5th grade course grades, and teacher recommendations.

    Reading Skills 6A (011241 / 011242)

    This course is designed for readers who have a foundation in decoding skills, but experience difficulty comprehending grade-level material. The curriculum focuses on strengthening fluency, comprehension, and vocabulary skills. Placement is based on standardized test scores and teacher recommendation.

    Duration: Yearlong Course

    Reading Skills 6B (011271 / 011272)

    Students in this course will improve reading proficiency with explicit, direct instruction in fluency, vocabulary, and comprehension. Strategies for phonemic awareness and phonics will be taught as needed. Students will read leveled, high interest literature for both academic and recreational purposes. Placement is based on standardized test scores and teacher recommendation.

    Duration: Yearlong Course

    Advanced Math 6 (045041/045042)

    This course will extend the learning opportunities for students who are prepared for the rigorous and challenging curriculum extension through the development of the number system carried on in the earlier elementary grades. Content includes work on the fundamental operations and using these operations with the various subsets of the real number system such as whole numbers, fractions, and decimals. This course also addresses unit conversions within a system of measurement, geometry, data analysis, two-step equations and problem solving. All math classes at the sixth-grade level will integrate electronic media and communication skills.

    This course meets for a full block every other day all year.6th graders will be placed in Advanced Math 6 based on standardized test scores, Math performance, and teacher recommendation.

    Duration: Yearlong Course

    Honors Special Project 6 (011031)

    This course offers a wide variety of experiences that align with gifted and talented programming standards.  Learning opportunities meet grade level objectives in problem-solving, critical thinking, creative thinking, inquiry, cultural proficiency, metacognition and affective skills.

    Duration: Semester Course

     

     

     

    7th Grade Course Catalog

    Sample Schedule

    Block

    A Day

    Block

    B Day

    1/2

    Semester Elective 1

    1/2

    Social Studies

    Adv

    Wildcat Block

    Adv

    Wildcat Block

    3/4

     

    Language Arts

    3/4

     

    Semester Elective 3

    5/6

    Math

    5/6

    Science

    7/8

    Physical Education 7

    Intro to College and Careers 7

    7/8

     

    Semester Elective 2

    Required Core Classes

     

    Math 7 (041631 / 041632)

    This course covers the content standards for Seventh Grade Math. Students will perform operations with whole numbers, decimals, fractions, and integers, solve proportions and percent problems, convert measurements within systems, use plane geometry, and solve equations and real-life problems. Due to the extended time spent in this daily block course, students will earn 2 credits per semester.

    Duration: Yearlong Course

    English Language Arts Grade 7 (010091 / 010092)

    English Language Arts Grade 7 supports student mastery of seventh grade language arts standards and focuses on development and application of skills in grade level reading, writing, speaking, listening, and multiple literacies. Students will read a variety of literary and informational texts and write in a variety of modes using numerous tools and organizational frameworks. Students will also learn appropriate and safe use of digital tools related to research.

    Duration: Yearlong Course

    Science 7 (060161 / 060162)

    Science 7 engages students in the three dimensions (science practices, disciplinary core ideas, and crosscutting concepts) of learning as identified by the Nebraska College and Career Ready Standards for Science. The topics include structure and properties of matter, chemical reactions, interdependent relationships in ecosystems, matter and energy in organisms and ecosystems, Earth's systems, and history of Earth.

    Duration: Yearlong Course

    Social Studies 7 (030071 / 030072)

    This course examines the world we live in by studying Africa, Asia, and Eastern Europe. Special attention is given to the geography, history, economics, culture, and elements of citizenship within the regions studied. Along with their texts, students use technology, novels, current events, and interdisciplinary activities to expand their understanding of the Eastern Hemisphere. This is the first semester of this course.

    Duration: Yearlong Course

    Required Specialized Classes:

    Physical Education 7 (070151 / 070152)

    This is a survey course involving students in the development of personal fitness and participation in a variety of sports, games, and dance activities.

    Duration: Yearlong Course

    Intro to College & Careers 7(120281/120282)

    Students will continue to explore careers using the Nebraska Career Education Model.  A focus will be to make connections between personal aptitudes and interests to specific Career Fields and Clusters.  Students will have opportunities to practice and develop skills in the Nebraska Career Readiness Standards of Practice.  Students will draw from class learning, skill development and activities to begin a Personal Learning Plan to transition into high school with a broad career cluster focus.

    Duration: Yearlong Course

    Semester Academy Exploration choices:

    *Pick 1 or both

    Health Careers Exploration 2 (074302)

    This course is an introduction to Health Science careers after taking Health Career Exploration 1, but is not required. The course will provide experiences along with information and knowledge related to the health care field on an exploratory basis.

    Duration: Semester Course

    Zoo Architecture 7 (061491)

    Utilizing the engineering and design process, students will collaboratively create projects that relate to the logistics of building a zoo. Students will study computer simulated design, architecture, and engineering concepts and regulations for designing structures and habitats for zoos with a focus on study and conservation.

    Duration: Semester Course

    Semester Electives:

    Art 7 (110071)

    Throughout this course, students will experience a wide variety of artistic materials and examine the artistic communication and expression of identity by several artists, past and present. Aesthetic theories of Expressionism and Imitationalism will also be studied in depth. As they do so, they will be creating their own artwork about personal identity.

    Duration: Semester Course

    Astronomy (061111)

    Students work within a rigorous framework of galaxy study and cosmology, the study of the cosmos.  Much of the study will be done in the school planetarium.  Students are encouraged to further their study of astronomy by using this course as a part of their Science Fair research and study.  Students will be required to begin work on a digital portfolio for the class.

    Duration: Semester Course.

    Exploring Robotics 1 (170051)

    Exploring Robotics 1 is an introduction to robotics, engineering, programming, team dynamics and technical drafting.

    Duration: Semester Course

    MS Service Learning (038401)

    This course is a hands-on study of the practice and intent of service learning, the integration of community service, and related academic study for 7th grade.  Students will spend one semester actively developing, planning, implementing, and evaluating service-learning experience.  Principals of civic engagement will be added to provide students with a well-rounded learning experience.  Teachers are advised to have attended the UNO Service-Learning Academy or received training in service learning or project based learning.

    Duration: Semester Course

    Speech 7 (025161)

    This course builds on the fundamentals of speech and debate.

    Duration: Semester Course

    Computer Applications III (130021)

    After taking Computer Apps II, this middle-level course is designed to emphasize digital citizenship, basic computer operations, word processing applications, spreadsheet applications, presentation applications, and technology communication tools. Students will master keyboarding skills; compose, create, edit, and format word processing documents; organize and manipulate data in a spreadsheet; and prepare a formal presentation.

    Duration: Semester Course

     

     

    Enrichment Courses:

    *Students will be placed in the following enrichment class options based upon test scores, 6th grade course grades, and teacher recommendations.

     

    Honors PreAlgebra (041651 / 041652)

    This course is designed to meet the needs of the student who will benefit from a transition course which bridges the similarities of arithmetic and algebra. This course will contain spiraling reinforcement of basic algebraic concepts and topics in order to prepare students for successful placement in Algebra 1-2. This course will cover the content standards for pre-algebra, including operations on real numbers, conversions among fractions, decimals, and percents, solving linear equations and inequalities, graphing linear equations, working with polynomials, and using measures of central tendency to interpret data. Due to the extended time spent in this daily block course, students earn two credits per semester.

    Duration: Yearlong Course

    Honors English Language Arts Grade 7 (010101 / 010102)

    Honors English Language Arts Grade 7 course supports student mastery of seventh grade language arts standards and focuses on development and application of skills in grade level reading, writing, speaking, listening, and multiple literacies. Students will read a variety of literary and informational texts and write in a variety of modes using numerous tools and organizational frameworks. Students will also learn appropriate and safe use of digital tools related to research. Tasks and/or projects will be completed that require rigorous and deep critical thinking skills as they apply to English language arts.

    Duration: Yearlong Course

    Honors Science 7 (062171 / 062172)

    Honors Science 7 engages students in the three dimensions (science practices, disciplinary core ideas, and crosscutting concepts) of learning as identified by the Nebraska College and Career Ready Standards for Science. The topics include structure and properties of matter, chemical reactions, interdependent relationships in ecosystems, matter and energy in organisms and ecosystems, Earth's systems, history of Earth, heredity, and natural selection and adaptations. This course provides a foundation for other science courses. Students enrolled in honor courses have additional experiences that require a more rigorous program of study.

    Duration: Yearlong Course

    Honors Special Project 7 (010961)

    This course offers a wide variety of experiences that align with gifted and talented programming standards.  Learning opportunities meet grade level objectives in problem-solving, critical thinking, creative thinking, inquiry, cultural proficiency, metacognition and affective skills.

    Duration: Yearlong Course

    Reading Skills (011241 / 011242)

    This course is designed for readers who have a foundation in decoding skills, but experience difficulty comprehending grade-level material. The curriculum focuses on strengthening fluency, comprehension, and vocabulary skills.  Placement is based on standardized test scores and teacher recommendation.

    Duration: Yearlong Course

    Reading Skills (011271 / 011272)

    Students in this course will improve reading proficiency with explicit, direct instruction in fluency, vocabulary, and comprehension. Strategies for phonemic awareness and phonics will be taught as needed. Students will read leveled, high interest literature for both academic and recreational purposes. Placement is based on standardized test scores and teacher recommendation.

    Duration: Yearlong Course

    JAG (188011)

    Jobs for America’s Graduates (JAG) is a graduation enhancement program focusing on personal and career development and future readiness.  The class will participate in a variety of classroom activities, assignments, exploration, guest speakers, mentorship, and guidance.  Each member will become part of a student leadership organization and have several opportunities to further unlock and enhance their potential.  This is the middle-level experience/course that students would be enrolled into prior to high school.

    Duration: Yearlong Course

     

     

     

    8th Grade Course Catalog

    Sample Schedule

    Block

    A Day

    Block

    B Day

    1/2

    Physical Education 8

    Intro to College and Careers 8

    1/2

     

    Semester Elective 1

    Adv

    Wildcat Block

    Adv

    Wildcat Block

    3/4

     

    Language Arts

    3/4

     

    Social Studies

    5/6

    Math

    5/6

    Science

    7/8

     

    Program Elective

    7/8

     

    Program Elective

     

    Semester Electives:

    Art 8 (110099)

    This course allows students to be innovative and reflect on their own experiences as many American artists have and do today.  American artists were and are on the forefront of shaping America’s identity through recording the human experience in innovative ways.  Throughout this course, students will continue to develop their artistic voice and style and explore how they do and will play a part in society.  Students will examine art and artists throughout American history focusing on America’s diversity and influence.  Aesthetic theories of Instrumentalism, Expressionism and Formalism will be studied as well.  

    Duration: Semester Course

    Astronomy 8 (061121)

    Students work within a rigorous framework of galaxy study and cosmology, the study of the cosmos.  Much of the study will be done in the school planetarium.  Students are encouraged to further their study of astronomy by using this course as a part of their Science Fair research and study.  Students will be required to begin work on a digital portfolio for the class.

    Duration: Semester Course

    Speech 8 (025171)

    This course continues to focus on higher level research and presentation skills, and allows students additional hands-on experiences to polish their verbal presentation and listening abilities.

    Duration: Semester Course

     

    Drama 8 (020721)

    Drama 2 provides an introduction to drama and theater as an art form.  Students enrolled in this course will learn and apply basic principles of acting and fundamentals of stage terminology and audience etiquette.  Participants will study, experience, and perform pantomime, improvisation, monologues, original scenes, and create, write, and perform original scripts/plays. An introduction to theater history. 

    Duration: Semester Course

    Gr8 Middle Service Learning (038401)

    This course is a hands-on study of the practice and intent of service learning, the integration of community service, and related academic study for 8th grade.  Students will spend one semester actively developing, planning, implementing, and evaluating service-learning experience.  Principals of civic engagement will be added to provide students with a well-rounded learning experience. 

    Duration: Semester Course

    Exploring Robotics 2(170051)

    Exploring Robotics 2 is an introduction to robotics, engineering, programming, team dynamics and technical drafting.

    Duration: Semester Course

    Intro to Design 8 (130391)

    This eighth-grade course will continue to develop knowledge and skills in design elements and principles.  Students will learn advanced skills in utilizing software for design.  The course will focus on planning, creating, editing, and presenting ideas through various mediums to communicate information to multiple audiences.

    Duration: Semester Course

    Intro to Computer Science 8(130081)

    This eighth-grade course will continue to develop knowledge and skills in computer science.  Students will further develop computational thinking skills to solve problems and address real-world challenges.  The course will include a focus on project creation and collaboration through technology, ethical use of technology and its impact to the community.

    Duration: Semester Course

    Lifetime Fitness (070411)

    Students will learn skills related to living a healthy life through physical wellness, but will also touch on nutrition and overall well-being. 

    Duration: Semester Course

    General Vocal Music 8

     General/Vocal Music 8 continues the development of musical concepts and skills.  Greater knowledge and appreciation of musical periods and styles are encouraged through appropriate studies.  Vocal emphasis is placed on the introduction of the male changing voice and greater extension of all voice ranges.

    Duration: Yearlong Course

    Journalism 8 (025071/025072)

    This course focuses on introducing students to the print aspect of journalism.  Students will take part in developing, writing, revising, editing and publishing print materials ranging from brochures to a school newspaper and yearbook.  Based in the belief that the more one writes, the better one writes, this is first and foremost a lab for writing.  Distinguishing between and among the different purposes one has for writing will be the primary basis for this class.

    Duration: Semester Course

    Chorus 8 (190101/190102)

    Chorus 8 is available to eighth grade students who have special interests and abilities in choral singing.  Choral music is introduced in two and three parts that include bass clef participation.  Vocal emphasis is placed on the introduction of the male changing voice and greater extension of all voice ranges.  Performance opportunities including the All-City Music Festival are an extension of the classroom experience.

    Duration: Yearlong Course

    Science Scholars (060851/060852)

    Science Scholars directly exposes the student to scientific research.  Students will independently and/or collaboratively investigate and develop a science project during the course of the school year.  Independent research, problem solving techniques, and the principles of scientific investigation will be studied and applied.  Students will also have the opportunity to enter their projects in local, state, and national science competitions.

    Duration: Yearlong Course

    English as a Second Language (ESL)

    ESL A

    This course is the core of the beginning level of English as a Second Language course. The focus of this course is on building vocabulary and expression in English.

    Prerequisite: Placement based upon OPS Placement Guidelines.

    Duration: Yearlong Course

    ESL B

    This course is designed for intermediate ESL student. The focus of this course will be to continue the development of basic communication skills, English language vocabulary, and more advanced grammatical structures. This course is typically for a second-year English language learner.

    Prerequisite: Placement based upon OPS Placement Guidelines.

    Duration: Yearlong Course

    ESL Reading A

    This course offers students learning English as a second language beginning reading instruction in English.

    Prerequisite: Placement based upon OPS Placement Guidelines.

    Duration: Yearlong Course

    ESL Reading B

    This course is designed for intermediate ESL students who need additional help to improve their reading skills. Emphasis is on developing fluency, summarizing, and sequencing events in a reading passage, recognizing cause and effect and using systematic strategies to locate information from textbooks, charts, graphs, and tables which may be used in mainstream classes.

    Prerequisite: Placement based upon OPS Placement Guidelines.

    Duration: Yearlong Course

    ESL TRANSITIONS

    This course is designed for advanced ESL students with a focus on developing increased fluency and comprehension in reading more advanced materials and use a wide range of strategies to construct oral and written claims and support them with reasoning and evidence. Successful completion of learning goals from ESL B or demonstration of equivalent skills is required for registration in this course.

    Prerequisite: Placement based upon OPS Placement Guidelines.

    Duration: Yearlong Course

     

     

    Athletics and Activities

    Athletics

    All seventh and eighth grade students are eligible to try out for the competitive athletic teams. KSTM students are encouraged to participate in athletics and other co-curricular activities. Students have a primary obligation to complete their schoolwork to the best of their abilities and to behave appropriately while in school before considering athletics and co-curricular activities.

    To be eligible to compete in inter-school athletic activities, a student-athlete must be passing all courses. Students who are not meeting academic expectations will be given one (1) week to improve their academic standing. If improvement is not made, the student-athlete may be required to miss practice time, competitions, and may even be removed from the team. Interested students may try out for inter-school athletic activities (a physical examination for athletics, proof of insurance, and parent consent.)

    After school athletic practices will conclude by 5:00 p.m. Late buses are provided for students that receive transportation through the school district and they will depart at 5:15 p.m. The ending time for athletic contests will vary based on the sport and the location of the contest

    Sport Offerings

    Fall

    Winter

    Spring

    Cross Country

    Basketball

    Soccer

    Football

    Swimming

    Track and Field

    Volleyball

    Wrestling

     

     

    Activities

    Students at KSTM have many opportunities to become involved with co-curricular clubs and activities. Student involvement fosters self-confidence for learning and a sense of belonging. Participation in clubs and activities also offers opportunities for developing social skills while interacting with students who hold similar interests. Clubs and activities may vary slightly from year to year depending upon student interest and sponsor availability. The activity and athletic bus will depart at 5:15 p.m. The lists of clubs/organizations vary year to year and during the year based on sponsor availability.

    Special Events

    African American History Challenge

    Science Fair

    Math Contests

    Spelling Bee

    Instrumental and Vocal Music Concerns

    Yearbook