The central goal of the Social Studies department at Renaissance School of the Arts is to develop critically minded and socially aware young adults who can use their skills to problem solve, advocate, and serve their communities and country at large. In order to facilitate this development, we follow the New York City Department of Education “Passport to Social Studies” to teach global history in 6th Grade as well as United States history in 7th and 8th grade. We infuse culturally relevant and equitable practices and resources to further engage and inform students. Students will have a better understanding of the different array of people and cultures in the world, as well as better understanding of themselves. They will also understand the influence past and present events and people, including themselves, have on our current society. When students move on from our department, RSA students will have the necessary skills, knowledge, and attitude to be change makers and lifelong learners.
The Science Department at RSA is a 3-year sequence, which culminates with students taking the Regents exam for Living Environment at the end of 8th grade. In 6th Grade, students will be exposed to PBIS (Project-Based Inquiry in Science), with many hands-on projects and experiments, and will focus on Physical Science. In 7th Grade, students will continue with PBIS, but will focus on Life Science, which, at RSA, is a prerequisite for Living Environment, which students will take in 8th Grade. Successful completion of that course and a passing grade on the Regents exam will earn the student 2 high school credits, which will be applied towards their graduation from high school.
The English department at RSA is dedicated to delivering the foundations of a strong English Language curriculum that emphasizes the needs of the 21st century learner. Students become fluent in research and essay writing using individual laptops in class. Students use culturally responsive texts as the background for their class discussions and debate. Through the Teacher's College Writing curriculum we explore the elements of strong writing through multiple genres: narrative, informational, fiction and poetry/drama. Each classroom is filled with a variety of high interests texts for students to read and discuss as we believe that students who cultivate a love for reading are able to tackle all academic challenges that high school and college have to offer.
The Mathematics Department is devised of a team of educators that have studied mathematics and how to deliver math instruction to middle school students. In accordance with the Department of Education, we follow the New York State Next Generation Mathematics Learning Standards guidelines. We believe the best way for students to be successful is for them to work on challenging problems, share their thinking with others, and use their thinking to build and deepen understanding. Our goal is to develop life-long learners.
We work with students to prepare them for advancements in math. Our seniors are given the opportunity to take Algebra 1 prior to entering high school, with the possibility of obtaining class credit for high school.