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The Middle School, 6th through 8th grades, provides a dynamic environment for students to acquire substantial knowledge and develop problem-solving and study skills that are imperative as they progress to high school and college. Students are taught to think critically and take intellectual risks as they become more self-confident in their academic skills and as young teens. They also move from concrete to abstract thinking through interdisciplinary projects. One example, the “Identity Project,” requires 8th grade students to interview older relatives, research their genetic profile and reflect on their own lives.