Learn More About Middle School
Middle school life at Canterbury is filled with the excitement and variety that middle school students need and want. Consistent with our mission, the opportunities available for our students are geared toward educating the whole child. In addition to highly-qualified subject teachers, Canterbury has a team of faculty to help guide middle school students including a student support services specialist, a school counselor, a director of student life, and our chaplain.
Advisory groups, comprised of students from the same grade level and one faculty advisor, meet every day. This vital, small-group time provides a forum for community building, academic communication and enrichment, social development, and discussion of school or other issues.
Canterbury Cougars learn in the classroom and on the sports field. We know that students who participate in sports develop important teamwork, sportsmanship, and physical skills. As part of our whole-child philosophy, Canterbury makes sports accessible for every 6th-8th grade student through a no-cut policy, which means that every student in those grades can play on a team that is appropriate to his or her developmental level. Fifth grade students may be invited to participate on a team to fill a roster. There is more information on the sports page.
A variety of after-school clubs and activities are offered throughout the year on a trimester schedule. There is more information on the After School Opportunities page.
Canterbury’s dress code was designed to give students a valuable feeling of equality. There is no uniform, though students are required to purchase a Canterbury logo polo shirt to wear on field trips. The daily dress code requires students to dress in clothes that are similar, so that there is no competition to dress in the latest fashions. You can see a detailed explanation of the dress code here.
Canterbury’s Honor Code exemplifies our commitment to create an environment in which honesty and integrity prevail. The code acts as an extension of our Behavior Expectation Policy, and with this focus on personal and academic integrity, we create opportunities for our middle school students to gain insight into these vitally important concepts. The Middle School Honor Code reads: “In accordance with the mission of the school and the Behavior Expectation Policy, Canterbury students will not participate in lying, cheating, or stealing, and they will not tolerate those actions in others.” After an orientation, middle school students pledge in writing to uphold the Honor Code and repeat the pledge on all tests, projects, papers, reports, and long-term assignments.
Leadership development at Canterbury promotes learning about self and others, loving across all boundaries, and serving one’s community. Throughout a student’s experience in the Middle School Leadership program they will be developing an intentional understanding of self and its impact on others, empowering a respect for differences, creating and sustaining positive relationships, and seeking and learning from a variety of opportunities to serve. The program takes a four-prong approach to implementing these principles: curriculum (Leadership classes in 5 th - 8th grades), Canterbury experiences (what we do on campus to put leadership into action), service (a means of demonstrating leadership), and premier leadership experiences (conferences, workshops, off-campus programming, and speakers).
Canterbury is rich in meaningful traditions, and middle school students have multiple opportunities to leave their distinct stamp on our school. Eighth grade students create a class banner to lead the Founders’ Day procession, and that banner joins other banners as a permanent fixture in the foyer of Armfield Hall. Each school year concludes with a final chapel for 8 th grade students complete with a slideshow of their time at Canterbury. During their 8th grade year, most students choose to give a sermon about their faith journey for the entire Canterbury community. Every student is a part of a Family consisting of students from each grade. Sixth graders and kindergartners have a special relationship as Chapel Buddies, attending every Chapel together and sharing in a series of special events. Other traditions include an annual Spirit Week; pep rallies; faculty/student athletic contests; and In My Nieghbors’ Shoes, a week where the middle school engages in service and reflection.
Our Student Council and the Canterbury Parents' Association (CPA) work together to provide social activities and events throughout the year for middle school students. Typically, over the course of the year, there is an informal fall social, an evening Winter Dance, a Valentine’s party, a spring dance, and a year-end celebration.
Every year, middle school students take class trips. These trips are designed to meet the whole-child needs of our students in experiential and engaging ways that cannot otherwise be met in the classroom. As we review and develop opportunities for these experiences, we consider factors such as curriculum enhancement, leadership/teamwork development, service opportunities, class cohesion, tradition, experiential and affective learning, and reflection opportunities. Over the course of the last few years, students have been explored caves, gone whitewater rafting, learned to scuba dive, built a model civilization on another planet, and discovered the real-world application of physics on roller coasters.
Every Tuesday and Thursday during the school day, students are offered a tutorial in any subject. Tutorial provides a time to study, to complete assignments, to meet with a teacher, to make up a test or quiz, or to consult with the student support specialist. Teachers are also available after school.