Ninth Grade at Bement
Our ninth grade program is a true freshman year, only our students are leading our school, rather than just entering it. As a capstone experience, the year is specifically designed to challenge and inspire our oldest students with opportunities to shine as leaders, leap forward academically, and transition to adolescence in a supportive setting. Our students eagerly await their ninth grade year, which is filled with beloved traditions, milestones, and a life-changing cultural awareness trip. This year also gives students and families time to focus on the secondary school admissions process with the support of Bement’s placement team. Across our programs, students in ninth grade hone skills in leadership, team building, and time management.
The ninth grade curriculum is rigorous and lively, putting our students in stride with their secondary school peers. Our talented teachers use experiential learning to enrich each course—from the Rube Goldberg Project in science to reading The Odyssey and staging a gods and goddesses festival or creating an artistic representation in English class. By design, the student-teacher ratio in our ninth grade is among the lowest in our upper school, allowing our students to receive personalized attention and lead and participate in small group discussions. The visual arts and drama programs, as well as English classes, build public speaking skills, culminating with monologue writing and performances, the creation and presentation of a symbolic self-portrait, as well as the development and rehearsal of reflective speeches that students deliver during baccalaureate and commencement services. Every ninth grade student also performs in the spring ninth grade musical, with performances for the entire school community, as well as parents, friends, and family.
Outside of class, our ninth graders have many chances to learn the importance of good citizenship and social responsibility. Ninth graders mentor younger students, plan and lead service projects, and captain our athletic teams. To deepen their volunteer experience, ninth graders embark on a pivotal service learning trip, spending a week living and working in an underserved community. When our students emerge from ninth grade, they’re ready to take on the world and be successful in fast-paced secondary schools.