Middle School - 6 - 8th grade

Students keep developing skills in middle school and apply them in more complex areas to build knowledge, critical thinking, and problem-solving. These are also important years for learning to organize work, manage time, set and meet goals, and work both independently and with others — and to discover interests and talents that affect decisions about high school, college, or career.

6th grade
  • Write in different ways for different reasons, like expressing opinions or persuading
  • Read a wide variety of literature, analyzing word choice, point of view, and structure
  • Study the history and geography of Asia and Africa
  • Learn ratios, rates, and statistics
  • Explore light, particles, ecosystems, water cycles, and rocks
7th grade
  • Study writing techniques such as analogy, allusion, and irony
  • Compare and contrast written, audio, and video texts
  • Analyze primary and secondary sources in history, and explain the impact of geography on historical developments
  • Work with equations, graphs, and two- and three-dimensional shapes
  • Study matter, energy, weather, and biology
  • Learn about managing moneyTip: Now is the right time to plan for high school. Some schools have entrance criteria, and grades and attendance in 7th grade count! Learn more about high school choice.
8th grade
  • Develop skills in reading, writing, and thinking in different subject areas — for example, historical texts
  • Study linear equations, two- and three-dimensional space, distance, and angles
  • Investigate geological processes, motion, force, heredity, natural selection, and chemical reactions
  • Study U.S. history from the American Revolution through Reconstruction

Tip: All 8th-grade students choose the high schools they’d like to go to next year. The first quarter counts toward entrance criteria, so keep working hard!

Some middle school science classes will have dissection activities. If your child does not want to participate in a dissection activity, you have the right to request an alternative option. Talk to your child’s teacher for more information.

State testing

This spring, Maryland students in 6th to 8th grades will take PARCC tests in English language arts and math. The results show whether students are meeting standards for their grade and are on track toward high school graduation. In 8th grade, students also take the Maryland Integrated Science Assessment to see how they are doing in meeting standards in science.