Kinkaid Middle School expands the foundation of skills developed in the Lower School and presents a challenging core curriculum enhanced by increased extracurricular activities. Middle School students develop the tools to become independent learners as well as team players.
The focus in the Middle School is on developing skills for success in the 21st century. Using a skill- and competency-based curriculum, the Middle School promotes interdisciplinary learning through challenge and exploration. Personalized interests are cultivated through a variety of extracurricular clubs, and opportunities exist in all grades for leadership and community service.
Kinkaid’s Middle School includes fifth grade through eighth grade. During these years, students experience a series of physical, emotional, cognitive and social changes.
The Middle School curriculum is designed to foster growing independence during this transition from child to young adult.
The transition from self-contained classes in the Lower School to department-identified sections in the Middle School begins in fifth grade. Students are assisted in this transition with consistent fifth-grade-only teachers, an Academic Enrichment class designed to foster technology and study skills, and a curriculum that provides guidance through developmentally appropriate challenges.
In fifth grade, students begin the use of 1-to-1 laptops. They are taught to use computers appropriately to support their learning, with an emphasis on acting responsibly and ethically in the digital realm. They also enjoy local field trips that have included destinations such as Brazos Bend State Park, Johnson Space Center and performances of the Houston Symphony.
Sixth grade introduces a variety of new developments in the students’ daily lives. Socially, the grade grows with the inclusion of about 40 new students, providing opportunities for new friendships and a wider range of perspectives. This larger student body merges together during the four-day trip to Mo Ranch in October. A keystone of the Kinkaid experience, this trip helps students develop independence and teamwork skills through outdoor education challenges. The students return from this trip as one united group of sixth graders.
Sixth graders are also exposed to numerous forms of fine arts and athletics as they look to identify and follow their passions in future grades. Students have the opportunity to participate in band, orchestra, visual art, and chorus classes throughout the year. In physical education, students learn about all of the sports that Kinkaid offers beginning in seventh grade.
Students beginning the second half of Middle School are encouraged to both explore their own personal passions and develop leadership skills. By choosing their own elective classes, students can delve into personal interests like orchestra, creative writing, or computers. Peer mentors begin to be trained in seventh grade to help facilitate discussions and activities among the younger grades. This year also marks the first foray into interscholastic athletics in after-school sports.
Seventh graders get to explore their home state with a three-day trip around Texas that is connected to their Texas history course. The seventh grade academic experience continues to promote critical thinking and personal responsibility as it grows more challenging. Students demonstrate their understanding in cumulative exams and research papers.
As the leaders of the Middle School, eighth graders are faced with dual roles as scholars and role models. Students are introduced to classical education with the study of Latin, and the connections between math and science are highlighted in their study of physics and chemistry. The accelerated curriculum provides a critical bridge to the Upper School through the students’ development of time management strategies, organizational methods, and abstract thought.
Eighth graders represent the Middle School as leaders in the Student Council and as organizers of many social and extracurricular activities for all Middle School students. Through assemblies and special events, eighth graders set the tone for the school year and provide leadership to younger students. Eighth grade students at Kinkaid are encouraged to participate in athletics and electives, as well as in our annual musical production.