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  Civicorps Middle School  

The Civicorps Difference

  • Imagine a budding first grade naturalist preparing redwood seedlings for planting in a local park.
  • Picture a second grade historian discovering the recent past by interviewing an “elder buddy.”
  • Envision fourth grade actors performing a play they coauthored about conserving local wetlands.

Our program emphasizes three forms of literacy; academic, civic and artisticAcademic literacy is defined as the ability to read, write, calculate, reason and communicate with precision and depth.  Civic literacy is the ability to “let one’s life speak” through participating thoughtfully, responsibly and passionately in the life of the community with an overriding concern for the common good and an orientation towards service.  Artistic literacy is thought of as graceful personal expression, the development of a discerning eye, a sensitive ear, and an acquired taste for beauty.

We believe that each of these forms of literacy is necessary if the children of today are to grow into adults who can successfully grapple with the complexities of our world and effect positive change.  Indeed, school is a perfect microcosm of our world in which children’s capacities can develop authentically.  We provide our students with empowering opportunities to understand and improve their world, yet on a scale that is appropriate for youngsters.

How do we accomplish this at Civicorps Middle?


Our academic program is both rigorous and engaging.  Grade level curricula are aligned to the California State Standards in every subject area, from language arts to science, yet students receive instruction that is differentiated to meet their particular needs.   We offer balanced literacy and mathematics, comprehensive units in science and social studies and ongoing formative assessments to ensure that our students are learning to their fullest potential.  Throughout their life at the school, students look forward to the signature activities of each grade level, such as expeditionary field trips and service-learning projects that are integrated into the core curriculum. 


We place a premium on service as way of learning and believe that citizenship is at the heart of a healthy democratic society.  Around Civicorps, our students are known as “Citizen Leaders” and “Citizen Learners” and are actively engaged in ongoing service projects that help to illustrate the abstract notion of citizenship. A culture of mutual care and respect is nurtured through structured opportunities to build community, make positive connections with peers and adults and learn the valuable skills necessary for conflict resolution.   Our weekly Community Meeting serves as a forum for school-wide discussion and celebration.


Students participate weekly in visual, performing and musical arts classes in order to learn the foundational skills and knowledge of each of these disciplines.  Students create their own unique works of art, study the lives and work of various artists and attend assemblies that highlight the particular art forms they are studying.  In addition, the arts are woven into the framework of the academic program.  Since students need the same skills to make scientific observations as they do to draw a still life, we work to ensure that students transfer their knowledge and skill they learn in art classes to other aspects of the program.





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