Ninth Grade Program
Sandy Spring Friends School offers a rich transitional experience for ninth grade students linking the middle school years with the more intensive demands of the upper school program.
At Sandy Spring Friends School, we offer help students successfully transition from middle school to upper school, by offering a ninth grade program that is sensitive to the particular intellectual, social and emotional needs of 13 to 14-year olds as they enter late adolescence. Most of the ninth grade classrooms are located in Hartshorne (see school map). This central location allows the students to maintain closer contact with their teachers, their peers, and their books and supplies. Other classes are held in Moore Hall and in the Science Center. The academic program allows for integration across the four basic subject areas of English, history, science, and mathematics. Additional required courses include:
- Foreign language - French, Spanish, or Chinese (Mandarin)
- Physical Education
- Study Hall/Enrichment seminars: Quakerism; interpersonal relationships; leadership & teamwork; diversity appreciation, nutrition and body image; drugs, alcohol and tobacco.
As an experience-based progessive school, our ninth grade program offers a number of experiential components. These include:
- Pre-school camping trip
- Community service
- Field trips
- Team-building exercises
- 9th Grade Play in November
Every aspect of the program is required and built into the ninth grade schedule. We value each part of the program as an important educational growth experience. Each experiential component extends and enriches the core academic program. The ninth grade Intersession in recent years has traveled to the Florida Keys. It is primarily a curriculum-based trip with extensive amounts of community service.
Ninth Grade Camping Trip
To help build community, and prepare students for the school year, our ninth graders participate in a camping trip. This required four-day trip occurs in late August and includes hiking, canoeing and whole group activities at Catoctin Quaker Camp. There is no additional fee for this trip.
- Letter to 9th Grade Families from Steff Kerr, 9th Grade Program Director
- Sample Itinerary
- Supply/Equipment List
- Food Suggestion List
9th Grade Team
Seven enthusiastic and experienced teachers lead this program. Other teachers work closely with this group. Ninth Grade Program team member names and roles are listed below.
Steff Kerr '89
Dean of 9th Grade Program, Mathematics
Johanna Modak '07
Upper School Faculty—Global Languages (Spanish)
Kwame Darko '98
Upper School Faculty—Mathematics
Upper School Faculty—English
Upper School Faculty—Global Languages
Upper School Faculty—Arts
Upper School Faculty—History