Middle School Curriculum

ETR Students working on laptop computers.


The intent of this Course Description Guide is to provide students and parents with overview of the grade level content and descriptions of the courses offered at E.T. Richardson Middle School. 


The middle school curriculum focuses on developing the foundation set by the elementary curriculum with a strong reading program bolstered by the ‘Go Blue’ initiative. The responsibility of E.T. Richardson Middle School (ETR) is to ensure all students are prepared to participate in the rigorous academic program at the high school level. ETR will accomplish this goal with a focus on learning through writing. Writing is knowing. This is the tenet upon which we base our program, The Writing Center. Writing is a skill that students need not only while in school, but one that can carry them through college and career. To be college and career ready, a student must write well.

Working with the University of Pennsylvania Penn Literacy Network (PLN) and the Pennsylvania Writing and Literature Project (PAWLP) fellowship, our faculty has embedded opportunities within each content-area to engage students in the writing process across all of the ETR curricula. The 6 Traits of Writing (ideas, organization, voice, word choice, sentence fluency, and conventions) are reflected within disciplinary literacy, content specific writing, assessing writing, giving feedback on writing, and using technology to support writing. Our students will be encouraged to celebrate their writing in various ways such as: contributing to a personal writing portfolio, essay contests, school displays, and culminating projects illuminating their growth as a writer.

At ETR, we are The Writing Center. We look forward to guiding your student as they develop their thoughts and reflect on their learning as a writer. Curriculum documents are being updated and formatted for online viewing and will be posted below as they become available.

Core Program Components


Our educators craft curricula to be standards-based, academically rigorous with an emphasis on immersing students in literacy initiatives, and mindfully integrates technology for our 21st century learners. Students who wish to change a course and/or a level within a content area must follow the guideline provided by administrators for this change. 


A = 90-100
B = 80-89
C = 70-79
D = 60-69
F = below 60


Each course has assessments anchored to Pennsylvania State Standards. Benchmark testing has been embedded into most courses offered. Measure of Academic Progress (MAP) testing and Classroom Diagnostic Testing (CDT) are administered throughout the year to determine student growth and provide educators with a guide to addressing student learning. The annual Pennsylvania System of School Assessment (PSSA) is a standards-based, criterion referenced assessment used to measure a student’s attainment of the academic standards while also determining the degree to which school programs enable students to attain proficiency of the standards. Middle School students in grades 6-8 are assessed in English Language Arts (ELA), Reading, and Math PSSA tests. The PSSA Science exam is administered to 8th-grade students only.

Grade 6

Grade 7

Grade 8

Unified Arts Courses

2014-2017 Schools to Watch
Award Winning Middle School


Schools to Watch logo

Pennsylvania Association for Middle Level Education logo