Through investigation Middle School students develop and utilize a scientific vocabulary and build on skills learned in the Lower School as they classify, compare and contrast, construct models and express ideas creatively. They make observations, examine and interpret data, keep systematic records, measure in the metric system, manipulate information mathematically and use scientific tools. In the process, students become well-grounded in independent research, collaborative problem solving and critical thinking.
A hands-on approach to understanding science concepts Topics: The metric system, the brain and learning, animal migration, nutrition, the physics of sound, chemical reactions, consumer science, vermicomposting, plants.
Process: Using the engineering and design cycle, design experiments to answer questions, follow multi-step procedures, demonstrate safe and accurate use of age-appropriate lab equipment, use and create system models, collect, record, interpret and present data.
As a teacher for over twenty years, Mrs. Browning has worked with grades 4 through 8. She began her teaching career in West Palm Beach, Florida. In 1981 she moved to the U.S. Virgin Islands, where she worked with adults as a personal trainer for 14 years. Upon her return to the U.S., she began teaching English to grades 5 through 8 in Quincy, MA. She has been employed at Derby Academy since 2005.
Mrs. Henderson began her teaching career as a student teacher at Milton Academy while attending Bard College in New York. After transferring to Dalhousie University, she graduated two years later and taught third grade at The Halifax Grammar School for one year. She then returned to Milton Academy where she taught reading and language arts to third, fourth and fifth graders for three years. Mrs. Henderson also taught fourth grade at the Advent School in Boston. She also taught various graduate courses and mentored student teachers before taking time off to raise her son and daughter. Unable to stay away from teaching, she tutored for the Cohasset school system until joining Derby's faculty in 1994. The unbounded enthusiasm and curiosity of fourth graders allows her to begin every year and every day with a sense of adventure and gratitude for the profession she still loves. In her spare time, Mrs Henderson enjoys reading, hiking, traveling and spending time with her four grandchildren.
Aileen Nalen is a graduate of Boston College School of Education. She minored in Spanish and English. She has taught in both public and private settings in grades one, two and four. Aileen has run summer workshops on teaching students to write creatively and is working towards her graduate degree. Mrs. Nalen has lived on both coasts and several states in between. She loves traveling with her husband, outdoor sports, reading, writing, and volunteering with local organizations.
Ms. Annie Peterman Grade 4 Teacher, Field Hockey and Lacrosse Coach, Collected Works Advisor
B.A., Trinity College M.Ed., Lesley University
Mrs. Peterman grew up as a faculty child north of Boston at both the Brookwood School in Manchester and The Governor's Academy in Byfield, and she always knew she wanted to be a teacher. After obtaining her M.Ed. from Lesley University, she worked in the Shady Hill School Admission Office before arriving at Derby in 2013. Ms. Peterman enjoys the outdoors and has worked as a backpacking and canoeing guide in Northern Minnesota, Montana and Wyoming.