The amount of physiological and neurological development that occurs during the middle school years is second only to the first four years in a child’s life. The Trinity Valley Middle School’s approach considers this pivotal time and establishes an environment that not only accentuates individual strengths but also encourages students to step out of their comfort zones, building both resiliency and perseverance throughout the journey.
A blend of traditional and unique programming that is based on a foundation of growing independence and leadership ensures that our students are given the tools to be successful inside and outside the classroom. Student-centered scheduling is critical to the design and success of Middle School academics.
Through the study of music, art, English, mathematics, science, social studies, and physical education, our fifth and sixth grade students master valuable curriculum and hone critical thinking skills. Our fifth graders participate in our Exploring Languages program, studying Spanish and Chinese each for one semester. In sixth grade, students choose one of these two modern languages, which they continue to study for the remainder of Middle School.
Beginning in seventh grade, English and social studies are integrated within American Studies, a class enriched by the natural connections between these two disciplines. In addition, seventh graders study creative dramatics and Mind Makers, a course that provides an intentional way for students to strengthen their abilities as independent learners and thinkers while also providing direct instruction in metacognition and executive functioning skills and opportunities to share ideas publicly and fluently. Latin is added to the course of study for our eighth graders, and students also choose two of our three fine arts courses -- drama, choir, and visual art -- to focus on.
Equally important is the addition of Trojan Athletics in seventh grade, which offers students participation on seasonal sports teams, further developing a sense of leadership and community contribution as students work toward a common goal.
Once a week, fifth- and sixth-grade students participate in Skills for Tomorrow, a course that engages an experiential learning model to promote collaborative problem solving, empathic communication, and adaptability. In addition, students explore coding. Selectives is offered to our seventh and eighth graders, allowing students to choose from a variety of offerings designed by our innovative teachers to encourage discovery, out-of-the-box-thinking, building and tinkering, and creativity.
The student committee model in the Middle School provides opportunities for authentic leadership development that includes over 80 students in various committees. We are proud of the hands-on, engaged leadership practice this model provides as well as the impact our students have on the overall Middle School program. Through work on the Assembly Committee, students plan and lead weekly assemblies that celebrate contributions, talents, and achievements of our Middle School students.
The Trojan Outdoor Experience (TOE) gives every Middle School student the opportunity to practice individual and group-based decision-making amidst a variety of challenging activities in some of the most beautiful and rugged natural areas our state and nation offer. From as close as Lake Mineral Wells State Park to as far away as the Shenandoah Valley, our students engage in activities such as climbing, rappelling, hiking, and rafting.
These opportunities are not possible without our incredible faculty, a most passionate and compassionate group. They are constantly pushing themselves as teachers and innovators, and though all are experts in their respective fields, first and foremost, they are experts in developing Middle School students through learning and engagement.
The vital connection between our faculty and every Middle School student begins with our advisory program, which provides a trusted advocate and guide through each year of Middle School. Our advisory program helps foster a sense of belonging for all Middle School students and provides support and encouragement both from the advisor and within the group. The program is designed to help students develop essential personal skills, such as self-advocacy and self-confidence, as well as digital citizenship and dignity in interactions with others.
Through these varied and dynamic opportunities, we seek to meet the unique developmental needs of our Middle School students as we build a private school community of young men and women of strong character, creativity, and intellect.
We welcome you to visit our Middle School to observe in person the vibrancy and engagement of our community. Trinity Valley School is a warm, nurturing environment, and we are proud to share it with you.
Head of Middle School