Special Education Curriculum
Throughout our courses, to the extent appropriate, NJ Student Learning Standards are addressed in addition to the students' Individual Education Plans. Our population requires much flexibility in terms of content and pace, and our special education curriculum is designed to serve as a general guideline. Our courses closely follow the structure of the courses developed and offered in NJ public schools. Our teachers will make curricular adaptations in instruction, materials, course content, and assessment practices based on the student’s IEP according to 6A:14-3.7 as we instruct students in the NJ Student Learning Standards through a general education curriculum.
All courses include a comprehensive core Reading and Language Arts curriculum which focuses on Reading, Language Arts, and writing standards. The curriculum addresses the five areas of reading instruction: reading comprehension, phonics, phonemic awareness, fluency, and vocabulary while focusing on 21st Century skills including critical thinking and problem solving: communication and collaboration; creativity and innovation; and technology.
Collier Middle School uses Big Ideas Math which is the only complete middle school math program developed with the Common Core Standards for Mathematical Content and Standards for Mathematical Practice as its foundation. It is the only program to offer both the Regular Pathway and the Compacted Pathway through middle school mathematics. The Regular Pathway prepares students for Algebra 1 or Integrated 1 in 9th grade. The Compacted Pathway is for accelerated learners who will progress on to Geometry or Integrated 2 in 9th grade.
Big Ideas Math has been systematically developed using learning and instructional theory to ensure the quality of instruction. Students gain a deeper understanding of math concepts by narrowing their focus to fewer topics at each grade level. Students master content through inductive reasoning opportunities, engaging activities that provide deeper understanding, concise stepped-out examples, rich thought-provoking exercises, and a continual building on what has been previously taught.
Big Ideas Math delivers a unique and revolutionary curriculum providing a balanced instructional approach of discovery and direct instruction. This approach opens doors to abstract thought, reasoning, and inquiry as students persevere to answer the Essential Questions that drive instruction. Clearly stepped-out examples complete the lesson and provide students with the precise language and structure necessary to build mathematical understanding and proficiency. The unique teaching edition provides teachers with complete instructional support from a master teacher.
Big Ideas Math is the only comprehensive math program developed for the Common Core State Standards that delivers instruction for all students.
4th through 8th Grade Math
All courses focus on the NJ Student Learning Standards including Numbers and Operations; Measurement; Geometry; Patterns; Algebra, and Probability; Problem Solving; Communication; Mathematical Reasoning, and connections to Science, Social Studies, Engineering and Technology (STEM).
Pre-Algebra, as its name implies, is a math course emphasizing the basic core goals of general mathematics but with an emphasis on skills leading to preparation for Algebra I. This course is will acquaint the student with essential areas in mathematics such as decimals, per-cents, fractions, and algebraic expressions and equations. These areas and others will be introduced and explored through various activities that encourage student problem solving, reasoning, and communication. These learning experiences will allow the student to develop both an appreciation for the role of mathematics in our society and stronger self-image relative to their ability to do mathematics.
This course is designed to stimulate and develop clear, logical, creative thinking by reviewing basic mathematical concepts and order of operations before introducing the student to the world of algebra. Some of the topics covered will require the students to use the language of algebra, perform operations with real numbers, solve equations, inequalities, and word problems, demonstrate an elementary understanding of relations and functions, graph and use linear equations and inequalities, perform operations with polynomials, work with ratios, proportions and percent.
This course is designed to stimulate and develop clear, logical, creative thinking through the study of the basic structure of geometry and geometric relationships and formal deductive proofs. Some of the topics covered in the course include: points, lines, planes, segments, angles, parallel and perpendicular lines, congruent and similar triangles, polygons, right triangles, circles, constructions, and perimeter, area, and volume. It addition, the students will be taught how to use calculators and various drawing utensils to create geometric shapes and figures.
Science themes are covered through project based learning including topics in scientific thinking processes which include observation, communication, comparing, organizing, relating, inferences, and application. NJ Student Learning Standards may include: Life Science; Earth and Space Science; Physical Science and Technology; Scientific Reasoning, Technology and Mathematics (STEM).
Social Studies themes are covered through project based learning including topics on developing an understanding of how, as noted in the New Jersey Social Studies introduction, cultural differences impact the interpretation of events at the local, state, national and international levels. The NJ Student Learning Standards Grades 4-8 will include foundational content in the strands of History, Geography, Economics, and Civics while also being infused in the core subjects of Reading, Language, Writing, Mathematics, Science, Technology, and Civic Literacy.
The inquiry-based approach of HMH Social Studies asks every student to dig into history and ask detailed questions. Students learn to think critically, draw conclusions, and support those conclusions with evidence. The World Civilizations series creates a richer understanding of world history and culture with vivid, instructional visuals and high-interest scenarios.
The inquiry-based approach of HMH Social Studies asks every student to dig into history and ask detailed questions. Students learn to think critically, draw conclusions, and support those conclusions with evidence. The United States History series helps students develop a richer understanding of America's past and its impact today, integrating skills such as map reading, research, geography, and civic participation.
Physical Education and Health
The Physical Education program at Collier Middle School is not your typical Physical Education class. Instead of a traditional gymnasium, the students use 260 acres of beautiful, forested areas as their classroom. Throughout the well-maintained trails surrounding the campus, students will be inspired by nature and the environment. As the students traverse these trails, they will encounter challenges ranging from a ropes course, zipline, slack line to a rock wall. Students benefit from this access to fresh air and come to appreciate how the natural environment contributes to their overall health and well being. The class is designed to help each individual student find a way to incorporate exercise into their everyday life and a love of nature and fitness that will follow them after they leave the walls of Collier.
“Forest environments are therapeutic landscapes.”
“Nature itself is the best physician.”