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Middle School

Two junior high boys working on computers in a lab.

Growing in educational excellence

District 196 middle school students have the opportunity to explore a wide variety of subject areas through curricula designed to meet the needs of middle-level learners. In District 196, we have six middle schools, one of which is a STEM magnet school. The core curriculum for middle school students is closely aligned with state standards and includes math, science, social studies and English language arts. Students also study in a variety of elective areas beyond the core content areas, which are also aligned to state and national standards.

All curriculum is reviewed regularly through a districtwide curricular review process. We are committed to providing middle school students with the support they need to see the infinite possibilities that await them in high school and beyond.

Core curriculum

English/Language Arts

We believe that literacy is thinking, and we strive to support the growth of our students as lifelong learners and critical thinkers. We are committed to building strong foundations in literacy for all of our learners through responsive instruction and early intervention while providing opportunities for choice, voice, and inquiry.

An effective language arts program supports learners in developing strategic actions in order to make meaning while engaging with a wide variety of texts, multiple perspectives and cultures, and collaborative learning experiences.  

Our instructional units are grounded in the Minnesota K-12 Academic Standards in English Language Arts concentrating on literature, informational text, writing, speaking, viewing, listening, media literacy and language.  

We believe language arts instructional practices should foster the joy of literacy while being responsive to the cultures, language, and experiences that learners bring to the classroom community.



Connecting mathematical experiences to the world around them, children are challenged to become increasingly sophisticated in dealing with mathematical concepts. The mathematics curriculum builds on students’ math understanding, skills, and proficiency at each grade level, as appropriate, by integrating concepts such as number and operations, algebra, geometry, measurement, and data analysis and probability. Students also engage in problem solving, reasoning, and communicating ideas while making connections to the world around them.



Science is the active study of the natural and man-made world, including processes, structures, designs, and systems. Science students use their senses and tools to observe, record and analyze data about the world and make conclusions based on evidence. Scientifically literate young people can understand basic science concepts, use skills for doing scientific investigations, solve technical problems, and design technologies for today’s world. – Minnesota Department of Education


Social Studies

We are committed to developing  future citizens who are informed and able to contribute to our democratic system.  The social studies curriculum provides the opportunity for each student to acquire knowledge; gain a deeper appreciation of the commonalities and the diversity which makes our national and world societies culturally unique, and develop skills necessary for responsible social, political and economic participation in a diverse, interdependent and changing world.  A variety of integrated experiences drawing on such disciplines as history, geography, economics, political science, sociology, psychology and anthropology enables students to function effectively and contribute constructively within society.


World languages




Mandarin (Simplified and Traditional)



Michael Bolsoni,
Director of Secondary Education