Course of Study

Course of Study

Click HERE for the 2021-2022 Course of Study.

2021-2022 Elective options

 

 

ADVANCED ART: (Grade 8)

This year-long class provides students with an opportunity to explore and expand their abilities in both two and three-dimensional art, introducing a variety of media and techniques in drawing, painting, ceramics, print, graphic design and textiles.  Students will expand upon the elements of art and the principles of design with continued exploration of art media and techniques. Throughout the year, selected works will be exhibited around the school and entered in county contests.  Students also have the opportunity to be a part of  the Emerging Artists Exhibit, held at UCI.  No previous experience in art is required. Suggested donation*:  $75 for supplies for student projects which the  student will take home. 

 

ART: (Grade 7)

This course is an exploration of drawing, painting, sculpture and design. Students will experience art from different countries and cultures, both ancient and contemporary. Throughout the course, students make connections between visual arts projects and their humanities, math and science curriculums. NO PREVIOUS ART EXPERIENCE REQUIRED. Suggested donation*: $20 for supplies for student projects which students will take home.  

 

CHAMBER ORCHESTRA:  (Grade 8) 

**Prerequisite: Student must have participated in music in his/her seventh grade year; Enrollment in the Chamber Orchestra is by audition and/or Rancho teacher approval. Please contact Mr. McBrien for more information.

*There are three orchestras:  Concert, Symphonic, and Chamber.

Chamber Orchestra is a full-year elective for string students of the highest caliber. It is comprised of students who play an orchestral string instrument and demonstrate a serious interest in concert, movie, and pop music.  Students learn advanced skills in tuning, sight-reading, performance, conducting, music history, and theory.  During the year, there are six concert performances. Performing in concerts is an integral part of the course. Students may use their own instrument, rent, or borrow one from the school if available. Participation is available to students by audition or music director invitation, for those interested in performing and studying high school level music literature. 

 

CHORUS: (Grade 7/8)

Chorus is designed for students who have a desire to sing and participate in choral performance.  Choir students will learn to sing in a choral ensemble while improving competence in sight-singing, musicianship, and vocal skills.  Students have the opportunity to perform in large and small ensembles as well as solos if desired. Performances are required and an integral part of the class. Students will learn and perform a wide variety of high quality choral literature that is appropriate for middle school performers and that adheres to the California Visual and Performing Arts Standards. No experience is necessary, just a high interest in singing. Choir students are eligible and encouraged to audition for the IUSD Middle School Honor Chorus.

 

CONCERT BAND:  (Grade 7/8) 

*There are two bands: Concert and Symphonic

Concert Band is a full-year elective that offers instruction on piccolo, flute, oboe, bassoon, clarinet, bass clarinet, alto saxophone, tenor saxophone, baritone saxophone, trumpet, horn, trombone, euphonium, tuba and percussion. This course is designed for second-year band students demonstrating an interest in concert, movie, and pop music who have had at least one year of experience on their instrument.  Students may enroll in this class to begin a wind or percussion instrument if they have some experience reading music.  Piano players are welcome and encouraged to learn a new instrument of their choosing.  Non-music readers are welcome, but will be limited as to what instrument they can choose.  Students learn skills in tuning, sight-reading, performance, conducting, music history, and theory.  During the year, there are four concert performances that include symphonic and pop selections. Students may use their own instrument, rent, or borrow one from the school if available.  **At the director’s recommendation, the student could be promoted to the Symphonic Orchestra.

 

CONCERT ORCHESTRA:  (Grade 7/8) 

*There are three orchestras:  Concert, Symphonic, and Chamber

Concert Orchestra is a full-year elective that offers instruction on violin, viola, cello, and string bass as well as a piano accompanist for performances. This course is for students demonstrating an interest in concert, movie, and pop music that have had at least one year of experience on an orchestral string instrument. Students learn skills in tuning, sight-reading, performance, conducting, music history, and theory.  During the year there are four concert performances. Performing in concerts is an integral part of the course. Students may use their own instrument, rent, or borrow one from the school, if available. **At the director’s recommendation, the student could be promoted to the Symphonic Orchestra.  

 

DIGITAL PHOTOGRAPHY/GRAPHIC DESIGN: (Grade 7/8) 

This course is a full year course for all levels of photographers and design artists who will explore the elements of art through digital photography and graphic design.   Students will learn different software applications, including PhotoShop and Illustrator. Students will also learn how to combine their photos with creative text and artwork  to produce items such as posters, billboards, advertisements, animation, designing t-shirts, and laser cut wood and paper products.  Using their photography and design skills, students will also work as a team to contribute to the school yearbook and school videos. 

This course is an introductory class within a Career Technical Education (CTE) pathway that continues into high school. 
 

DIRECTED STUDIES: (Grade 7/8)

This course is a special education class, consisting of specialized academic instruction, offered to support the general education curriculum. In this class, students review daily assignments, organize and prioritize assignments, clarify directions, study for tests, retake or finish tests, learn study skills and receive assistance with long term projects. This class is designed to support IEP goals in the areas of organization, study skills, homework completion, classwork completion or overall executive functioning deficits. Enrollment in this class is based on a student’s IEP team decision that this class is appropriate.  
 

FUNCTIONAL COMMUNICATION SKILLS: (Grade 7/8)

The functional communication program focuses on developing communication skills needed for success in school, work, and community settings. Class discussions, role playing, use of scripts, and solving daily problems. Continual improvement of communication skills in relation to peers, family, and the community will be focused on. An individualized program is developed based on each student’s individual needs and IEP goals and objectives. Enrollment in Functional Communication Skills is based upon student need and is part of an IEP team decision.
 

FUNCTIONAL LIFE SKILLS:  (Grade 7/8)

This course is a special education course whose purpose is to learn essential independent living skills, community safety skills and the ability to make healthy life choices.  Daily living skills, such as cleaning, grooming, grocery shopping, cooking and mobility training, social skills, self advocacy skills as well various recreation/leisure activities will be emphasized to improve each student’s independence in daily life skills.  An individualized program is developed based on each student’s individual needs and IEP goals and objectives. Enrollment in Functional LIfe Skills is based upon student need and is part of an IEP team decision.
 

FUNCTIONAL PRE-VOCATIONAL SKILLS: (Grade 7/8)

This course is a special education course designed to help students develop employability skills and to help them get ready to work. Pre-vocational activities will be worked on in a classroom setting, on or off campus. Depending on each student’s individual needs and skill level, the course offers students the opportunity to gain a basic understanding of essential job skills both socially and academically.  An individualized program is developed based on each student’s individual needs and IEP goals and objectives. Enrollment in Vocational Skills is based upon student need and is part of an IEP team decision.

 

LEADERSHIP: (Grade 8) 

Prerequisite:  Complete Application (available on rancho.iusd.org); Only students elected as an ASB Officer by their peers during the Student Council Elections and/or selected by faculty review will be enrolled in this course.

Leadership is a year-long course designed for the development of the elected/selected student leaders on campus (Student Council, School Site Council, and Advisement Representatives). Students organize school-wide activities, promote school spirit and a positive school culture, develop leadership and communication skills, and work to represent the needs of the Rancho student body. Students learn various team building and leadership skills and how to apply them, including public speaking, teamwork, creativity, goal setting, planning, kindness, productivity, and problem solving. 

 

MATH LAB:  (Grade 7/8)

Math Lab is an elective that includes instruction aligned with the California Common Core Math standards, with a strong emphasis on practicing basic skills, error analysis, and building both conceptual and computation skills. The course is highly structured and includes direct instruction, small group rotations, computer-based iReady Math, and independent practice. Students discover the fun in math and learn how to advocate for their learning in math. (Pass/No Pass Grade) Students may also be recommended for this course based on teacher feedback, grades, IUSD benchmark math scores.
 

OFFICE AIDE/TEACHER AIDE  (Grade 7/8) 

This year-long class gives students the opportunity to build their interpersonal skills and experience working in an office environment. Students greet visitors, perform office duties, run call slips, assist with set ups and event planning and other errands to class rooms.  Students learn to troubleshoot and assist the office in the efficient running of our school. Students will develop strong communication skills and confidence over the course of the year. 

 

READING LAB: (Grade 7/8) 

Reading Lab is a course that utilizes the READ 180 program, an evidence-based intervention program that was developed to meet the needs of struggling readers, students with disabilities, and English language learners.  The program incorporates a blended learning model that provides a balance of teacher-led instruction, scaffolded practice, and small-group interaction.  Throughout the Read 180 program students develop and improve their reading skills in the following areas: phonics, fluency, reading comprehension, vocabulary, spelling, and writing. Students may also be recommended for this course based on multiple criteria including, but not limited to, teacher recommendation, grades, ELPAC test scores, CAASPP test scores, and reading level.

 

SCHOOL SUCCESS: (Grade 7/8)  

This course is a full-year study skills course for those students who would like additional support with organization, study skills, test-taking, and assignment completion in order to further their academic success. In this class, students are given language, academic, and organizational support so they can reach their fullest potential. Students may also be recommended for this course based on multiple criteria including, but not limited to, teacher recommendation, grades, ELPAC test scores, CAASPP test scores, and reading level.

 

SCIENCE TECHNOLOGY ENGINEERING MATHEMATICS (STEM)/ROBOTICS: (Grade 8)

This course builds upon the skills and knowledge learned in Exploratory Technology and provides further opportunities to develop creativity, communication and collaboration skills through STEM related projects and lab experiences. This hands-on class will begin with a series of engineering challenges that will be solved utilizing 21st Century skills that include creativity, collaboration and communication within their design and build teams. These problem-solving skills and the application of the Design Cycle will be utilized in the assigned lab challenges including 3D Printing. Students will then be introduced to robotic engineering with VEX IQ and EDR Robotics.  Students will build upon a series of robotic engineering labs that culminate in the opportunity to build a large, fully functional customized robot. In-class competitions for robot games, obstacle courses, and creative designs will demonstrate the students new knowledge in the exciting field of robotics.

 

SPANISH 1:  (Grade 8) 

This course is a beginning Spanish class that is equivalent to the high school level 1 class. Students will learn the grammar and vocabulary at a high school level pace necessary to communicate in a variety of situations at a basic level. Students will be able to communicate in Spanish through various listening, speaking, reading and writing activities. They will also explore the rich and varied Spanish cultures around the world. The course will be conducted in Spanish as much as possible. To receive a recommendation for Spanish 2 in ninth grade, students must meet two of the three following criteria: 1) maintain a B or higher grade in Spanish 1 for every trimester  2) earn a 83% or higher on the End of Course assessment 3) teacher's appraisal of the student’s exhibited work habits and skills for an accelerated level course. 

 

SYMPHONIC BAND:  (Grade 7/8) 

**Prerequisite:  Two or more years of experience on a wind or percussion instrument; the ability to play your instrument at an advanced level; Placement in Symphonic Band Is by audition and/or Rancho teacher approval. Please contact Mr. McBrien for more information.

*There are two bands: Concert and Symphonic. 

Symphonic Band is a full-year advanced level music class for wind and percussion students who demonstrate a serious interest in concert, movie, and pop music.  Students learn advanced skills in tuning, sight-reading, performance, conducting, music history, and theory.  During the year, there are five concert performances. Performing in concerts is an integral part of the course.   Students may use their own instrument, rent, or borrow one from the school if available.  

 

SYMPHONIC ORCHESTRA:  (Grade 7/8) 

**Prerequisites: Three to four years of experience on an orchestral  string instrument (violin, viola, cello, bass); the ability to play your instrument at an advanced level; Placement in Symphonic Orchestra is by audition and/or Rancho teacher approval. Please contact Mr. McBrien for more information.

*There are three orchestras:  Concert, Symphonic, and Chamber.

Symphonic Orchestra is a full-year advanced level course for string students who play an orchestral string instrument and demonstrate a serious interest in concert, movie, and pop music.  Students learn advanced skills in tuning, sight-reading, performance, conducting, music history, and theory.  During the year, there are six concert performances. Performing in concerts is an integral part of the course. Students may use their own instrument, rent, or borrow one from the school if available. Participation is available to students by audition or music director invitation, for those interested in performing the most challenging music available to middle school students. 

 

TECHNOLOGY/STEM:  (Grade 7)

This dynamic, hands-on course offers students the opportunity to develop their problem solving, and team building skills through Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) related projects. This course combines interesting hands-on building experiences with problem solving opportunities. During the course, students will explore the basics of Electricity, Magnetism, Electromagnetism, and Energy while building circuits, motors, magnetic levitation vehicles, catapults and crash test vehicles.

 

VIDEO PRODUCTION: (Grade 7/8)  

This full-year course will develop the camera and computer skills related to video production by focusing on effective and appropriate communication in the digital age.  Students will also have the opportunity to prepare for and work behind the scenes on the Friday morning broadcast of our school television show, Rancho News Network (RNN).  This course is an introductory class within a Career Technical Education (CTE) pathway that continues into high school.  Extensive group work required.