ELECTIVE DESCRIPTIONS FOR 2023-2024 SCHOOL YEAR
Electives will be for the entire year so we recommend selecting carefully. All students should choose two elective options as they are not guaranteed their first choice.
Applications for Battle of the Spartans and Leadership can be found here.
Elective Descriptions 2023-2024
*BATTLE OF THE SPARTANS (W944):
This course strengthens students' skills in multiple disciplines (language arts, social science, math, and science) as they compete against other students, schools, and communities in a variety of academic competitions. Students will experience and practice teamwork, camaraderie, and build a strong sense of community while also improving their discussion techniques, problem-solving strategies, and creativity. While all students will participate in practices, individual students will find an area of passion and strength on which to focus, thus building confidence and gaining valuable experience in an area of interest.
*BEGINNING BAND (6th, 7th, 8th Grades) (W910):
Have you always wanted to learn how to play wind or percussion instruments? You will have the choice of learning the flute, oboe, clarinet, saxophone, trumpet, French horn, trombone, tuba, or percussion in Beginning Band. Amaze your friends and family during a culminating performance at the end of the year. Beginning band covers the basic elements of tone production, instrument care, musicianship, and sight reading. The specific selection of instruments will be made by the instructor during the first few weeks of school. No previous music experience required. (Year Long Class)
*INTERMEDIATE BAND (6th, 7th, 8th Grades) (W911.1):
Continue your musical journey in Concert Band. This group is for students who have played a band instrument (see above list) for at least one year. This group will perform several times throughout the year including festivals, concerts and a performance at Disneyland. Prerequisite: Successful completion of beginning band and/or instructor approval. (Year Long Class)
*CONCERT/ADVANCED BAND (Wind Ensemble) (6th, 7th, 8th Grades) (W912):
Continue your musical journey in the Wind Ensemble. This group is for students who have played a band instrument for at least 2 years. This group will perform several times throughout the year including festivals, concerts and a performance at Disneyland. Prerequisite: Successful completion of beginning band/concert band and/or instructor approval. (Year Long Class)
*BEGINNING STRINGS (6th, 7th, 8th Grades) (W901):
If you want to learn to play the violin, viola, cello, or string bass, this class is for you! Students will learn about different musical styles and develop technical skills and musicality. After learning how to play an instrument, you amaze your friends and family during a culminating performance at the end of the year. No previous music experience required. (Year Long Class)
*CONCERT ORCHESTRA (String Orchestra) (6th, 7th, 8th Grades) (W903):
Continue your musical journey in advanced strings. This group is for students who have played a string instrument (violin, viola, cello or bass) for at least one year. Private lessons on your instrument are encouraged but not required. This group will perform several times throughout the year including festivals, concerts and a performance at Disneyland. Prerequisite: Successful completion of beginning strings and/or instructor approval. (Year Long Class)
*CHORUS (Choir) (6th, 7th, 8th Grades) (W905):
Do you like to sing or wish that you could sing better? Then this is the class for you! Choir is for students who want to learn how to sing or just love to sing. Students will learn and develop their musicianship including how to read and write music notation, how to sing in different genres of music including pop, jazz, classical, and musical theater, and will also have opportunities to sing solos. This group will perform several times throughout the year including festivals, concerts and a performance at Disneyland. There is no audition required. (Year Long Class)
Discovery is a block of courses that will expose students to a variety of electives, such as Early College Academy, Guidance, Robotics, and Spanish.
* EARLY COLLEGE ACADEMY
The LVUSD Early College Academy is a pathways course that was established in 2018. A pathways course begins in middle school and is continued through high school.
In 6th grade ECA, students are introduced to all things middle school: how to navigate Aeries and Google Classroom, how to email a teacher, organizational skills, and how to get to class on time, to name a few.
Students will work on building social skills, leadership techniques, and collaborative methods. Students will build a web site and learn many tricks, tips, and enhancements using Google. Empathy, sympathy, gratitude, and kindness are common themes throughout the elective, and students will explore and research organizations in our community that provide these services. Students will also partake in note taking - from Cornell notes to sketchnoting, dive into their personality, revisit their own educational journey, explore colleges, and even see what the future might have in store for them.
In 7th grade ECA, students begin to explore the principles of successful college practices. They focus on the skills of writing, inquiry, collaboration, organization, and reading. These skills are realized through group and individual passion projects, the creation of a TED Talk, weekly peer tutorials, and the analysis of books like Success Principles for Teens. Students learn ways to organize their schoolwork and prepare for both short assignments and long term projects in their classes.
8th grade ECA students continue preparing for success in high school and college. The course focuses on effective note taking and study skills, with a continued emphasis on writing, inquiry, collaboration, organization, and reading. Units include Effective Note Taking, College Research, Presentation Skills, and Personal Goals/Awareness. What Color Is Your Parachute? for Teens guides students through a journey of discovery related to high school, college, and careers. Students engage in weekly study sessions and play games and socialize. Teambuilding and collaboration are emphasized in a supportive environment designed to ensure success. Late in the fall semester, Pierce College helps 8th grade ECA students apply and enroll to become college students! During spring semester, the professor comes to campus weekly and teaches an introductory counseling course. Students earn CSU/CC transferable credit when they successfully complete this course. Most importantly, they get an opportunity to experience college, hone their skills, and strengthen their resilience, grit, and growth mindset. The dual enrollment course is required of all 8th grade ECA students.
When students leave middle school ECA, they are prepared to enter into dual enrollment ECA classes at the high school. These dual enrollment classes will again feature application and enrollment through Pierce College. The professors come to campus to teach the courses, and students earn credit towards their high school diploma as well as college credits. College courses that have been offered in the past include: Psychology, Sociology, Business, Administration of Justice, ASL2, Anthropology, Cinema, and Communications. These course offerings vary year to year and may be different at each high school.
*GUIDANCE (7th & 8th Grades) (R66G)
This elective will cover a variety of different fun and useful topics. Activities and lessons will include topics such as study skills, organization techniques, problem solving, teamwork, mindfulness, yoga, stress reduction, public speaking character education and college and career guidance.
*ROBOTICS A/B (7th & 8th Grades) (Z180):
Are you interested in engineering, technology, or design? Do you want opportunities to express your creativity and problem solving skills? Then robotics is the course for you! Join us as we work in collaborative groups to learn the fundamentals of computer programing, 3D modeling, electronics, and engineering while designing and building robots! All robotics students will also participate in Full STEAM Ahead projects that allow them to pursue their personal interests through a yearlong public service, entrepreneurial, or self-improvement project. Students will have opportunities to work with equipment including Arduinos, VEX IQ robotics, 3D printers, and more. (Year Long Class)
This is a yearlong course with no prerequisites. Robotics A & B cover different content each year, but can be taken in any order.
Students that pass two years of Robotics A/B qualify to start in Robotics 2 in high school.
*SPANISH 1 A (7th Grade) (W922):
¡Hola y bienvenidos! This academic elective is designed for students who want to get a jump on their Spanish skills and learn about the cultures of the Spanish-speaking world. It is the first year of a two-year program, which will result in the ability to start Spanish 2 in 9th grade. We utilize the same curriculum as the high school, but spread it over two years in order to ensure comprehension and readiness for high school Spanish. There is an emphasis on communication, vocabulary, speaking, reading, and writing simple sentences. Prerequisite: “B” or better in Language Arts. (Year Long Class)
*SPANISH 1 B (8th Grade) (W923):
This class is the second year of the two-year Spanish program. There is a continuing emphasis on communicative language skills and an increased focus on written skills and grammar. Prerequisite: “B” or better in Spanish 1 A or instructor permission. In order to advance to Spanish 2 in the high schools, a final semester grade of a “B” or better must be earned in the class. (Year Long Class)
*YEARBOOK (7th & 8th Grades) (W970):
Capture the school year at A. E. Wright by becoming a member of the Yearbook Production team. Students will learn basic graphic design, journalism skills, and photography skills to create the school’s yearbook. Students will use software that includes Online Design, Adobe Photoshop, Flippar, and Apple iMovie. Students must be independent and able to meet deadlines. Prerequisite: Teacher approval. (Year Long Class)
*BEGINNING FINE ART (7th & 8th Grades) (W940):
Have you ever wanted to learn to draw or paint? Use a potter’s wheel? Build a sculpture out of junk? Then you are in the right place! Come explore the world of art through the eyes of many different cultures and artists. Using different mediums, such as charcoal, pencil, watercolor, and acrylic paint, you will learn the arts of drawing, painting, color, printmaking, and design. Explore creating three dimensional works of art including mask making, papier mache, plaster carving, sculpting, fiber arts, and ceramics. Study the styles of famous artists such as Salvador Dali, Andy Warhol, Georgia O’Keeffe, and Michelangelo and create your own personal masterpieces. Get in touch with your inner artist and see your work displayed in the school art show for Open House! No previous art experience is necessary. An advanced curriculum option is available for this class with instructor's permission. Materials cost for take-home projects: $25. (Year Long Class)
*ADVANCED FINE ART For 8th Grade Only)(W941):
Did you take Beginning Fine Art as a seventh grader and love it? Would you like to hone your skills and create a portfolio to take with you to high school? Then, this class is for you! Advanced Art consists of a small group of students who love art and want to take their skills to the next level. Students will have the opportunity to work independently on projects that pique their interest; all under the supervision of Ms. Jaffe. They will learn advanced shading and painting techniques that they can carry to the high school level. Materials cost for the take-home project is $25/year.
Prerequisite: Successful completion of Beginning Fine Art and/or instructor approval.
*SCHOOL SERVICE (8th Grade Only) (W981):
Assisting a teacher in a classroom or assisting in an office such as the Main Office, Counseling Office, Attendance Office by taking passes to a classroom, and other very light office duties. Prerequisite: Students must be in good standing in citizenship and have no discipline issues.
*LEADERSHIP: (7th & 8th Grades) (W960)
Leadership is the student government program at A.E.Wright Middle School. The primary purpose of the program is to develop confident and positive student leaders. Students also learn about teamwork, goal setting, decision making, and time management. In addition, students in the leadership program have a very important responsibility as they represent their peers. The Leadership class is also responsible for organizing and coordinating many activities. Some of these activities include: assemblies, spirit days, fundraisers, socials, Back to School Night, Mock Rock, and dances. In other words, leadership students have a huge impact on our school. Interest form and interview MUST be completed.