The seventh grade experience

Seventh grade is an exciting time at SBMS. Rising sixth graders build on experiences from the prior year, and we welcome a number of new seventh graders who have completed their elementary education at other schools. Our seventh grade starts with our passionate teachers who are committed to engaging and supporting the middle school student.

The seventh grade curriculum is grounded in the core disciplines of humanities, math, science, foreign language, life skills and the arts. We provide rigorous classes that are equivalent to what is offered at other junior high schools, but we take learning a step further to engage our students with many special projects, field studies, featured speakers and much more!
Middle School is more than just a school. Our students, whether they begin in sixth or seventh grade, learn to demonstrate in the halls and in our classrooms the knowledge and wisdom gained from our expeditions. Whether it is problem solving with your team to make the sturdiest of catapults in Science class, evaluating a applicant's needs and distributing micro loans across the globe in Human Geography class, or lighting the way for your inner voice to meet the page through creative or expository writing English class, our students are always polishing and faceting all sides of their own "diamond!"

Seventh-Grade Curriculum

List of 6 items.

  • Human Geography 7

    In Human Geography class students use the geographic inquiry process to explore the relationship between humans and their environment. Using a foundation in physical geography, students will analyze how we influence and change our environment, as well as how the environment shapes how we live. Students will explore regions of the world through a series of case studies focused on a key geography topic or theme (migration, population growth, water issues, climate change, etc.). Each unit will include hands-on activities, technology integration, and multiple opportunities to practice critical thinking, reading, and writing skills. Throughout the year students will research and present current events, connecting their geography studies to important local, national, and global issues. Students will also research and sponsor Kiva partners across the globe as SBMS continues to be a member of KIVA U at
  • English 7 - Language & Communication

    In 7th grade English Language & Communication, we work with reading, writing, speaking, listening, and viewing in order to become more efficient and effective communicators. We will learn more about our language through projects including literary histories, exploring the world of work through interviewing and/or working at a real job during career studies week, writing résumés and business letters, reading and writing non-fiction articles, using typography and designing with words, independent reading, vocabulary development, research, presenting an original speech before a live audience, and more! We will practice study skills, organization, time management, creating a workspace, typing, manuscript, and the writing process. Throughout the year, we will discover more about ourselves and explore our passions and how those could someday lead to a profession.
  • Math 7

    Students learn about proportional relationships, operations with rational numbers, working with expressions and linear equations, scale drawings, working with two and three-dimensional shapes, probability and much more. Students will complete larger problems of the month and challenge design projects. While students are learning skills and concepts, they will continue to develop a deeper sense of mathematical reasoning. Students also develop mathematical practices: to make sense of problems and persevere in solving them, reason abstractly and quantitatively, construct viable arguments and critique the reasoning of others, and model with mathematics. Math is about numbers, operations and reasoning, but it is also about innovation, creativity and perseverance. It is a tool for understanding and analyzing the world around us.
  • Science 7 - Physical Science

    Students learn how to create, run and communicate results for an experiment using the scientific method; develop communication skills through research and speech-writing; know how to design, build and test a model machine; and know how to set up a new experiment using sensors and microprocessors to collect data and compare variables. Instructional strategies include laboratory experiments, such as building catapults, creating circuits, building and using sensors, data collection and interpretation, fossil identification, earthquake analysis and atmospheric processes; conducting research and problem-solving techniques; and communicating results through oral and written presentations.
  • Spanish 7

    This high school level course formally launches students at SBMS into developing novice-low to novice-mid skills in speaking, listening, reading, and writing. Just as importantly, foundations are set to become lifelong language learners and have enduring success in future language courses. In addition, a diverse array of countries and cultures of the Spanish-speaking world, at home and abroad, are explored through a variety of interactive projects that include cooking, film production, trip planning, and cultural celebrations. 

    High school equivalent Spanish is covered over three years at SBMS. Our experience and research have shown us that adding experiential components, project-based teaching, and a pace that values depth over breadth, provides a strong foundation and opportunity for language acquisition, a love of language learning, and a path towards cultural competence for our students.
  • Life Skills 7

    The Life Skills seminar continues from topics covered in sixth grade and addresses the emotional, social, and physical needs of the adolescent at this age. We explore a variety of topics such as learning styles, motivational types, financial basics, the brain and neurology of learning, nutrition, health, puberty, digital literacy, cyberbullying, media safety, creating healthy boundaries, communication skills, cultural awareness, diversity, and much more throughout the year. Students’ interests and needs will steer the direction of the class as we focus on what is relevant in their lives as they move through the year. 

Meet Our Teachers

List of 7 members.

  • Photo of Jonathan Davis

    Jonathan "Jonathan" Davis 

    Dean of 7th Grade / 7th Grade Human Geography / Electives / Trip Staff
    Class of 1986
  • Photo of Teresa Jamison

    Teresa Jamison 

    English, 7th Grade / Garden
  • Photo of Jesse Kasehagen

    Jesse "Jesse" Kasehagen 

    Science, 7th Grade / Dean of the Bike Program
    Class of 1990
  • Photo of Erin Riley

    Erin "Erin" Riley 

    Math, 6th, & 7th / Trip Coordinator
  • Photo of Cassie Childs

    Cassie Childs 

  • Photo of Esmeralda Mamahua

    Esmeralda Mamahua 

    Spanish, 7th Grade
  • Photo of Angie Rose

    Angie Rose 

    Counselor and Life Skills Teacher

7th grade highlights

  • Kiva Project - Micro loans and global economics
  • Ojai Bikes and BOBs Trip - From SB to Ojai and back
  • Authors Alive - English research and dramatic performances
  • Life Skills - Navigating the life of the emerging young adult
  • Catapult Construction Project - Science and power tools
  • ¡La Cena Celebración - Spanish research and dinner party project
  • Career Studies Week - One week job placement in local businesses and non-profits
  • Marin County and San Francisco "Bridges" Journey - 10 day epic expedition of a lifetime