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Our Curriculum


All Students Take:

  • Math & Science (Cored)
  • English & Social Science (Cored)
  • Design Lab
  • 6th Grade PE
  • Elective (or Intervention)

What does "Cored" mean?

Cored classes are taught over 2 periods by the same teacher. Students will see their Cored course teachers every day.


All Students Take:

  • Math 7
  • Science 7
  • English
  • World History
  • Design Lab
  • PE
  • Elective (or Intervention)


All Students Take:

  • Math 8
  • Science 8
  • English 8
  • American History
  • Design Lab
  • PE
  • Elective (or Intervention)


  • We are standards-based and aligned to the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) & Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS).
  • We are rigorous - this does not mean more work, but rather having students go more in-depth. Middle School is a vital time in the development of students and we push students to persevere and to not give up.
  • We are interdisciplinary - what a student is learning in one class should connect to what he or she is learning in his or her other classes. Through collaboration and detailed planning, teachers work hard to connect thematic units across subject areas.
  • We are inquiry-based - students are first problem-finders and through their investigation, research, and exploration, they become solution-designers. Associated with the concept of Project Based Learning, teachers expertly craft Design Challenges to motivate and engage students in learning.
  • We apply the Design Thinking process, or aspects of the process to many assignments and/or projects (Discover the Problem, Empathy for Needs, Define your Focus, Ideate/Brainstorm Creative Solutions, Prototype by Creating the Solution, Test the Solution and Repeat as Needed).
  • We offer the full "Project Lead the Way" Gateway program. Project Lead the Way is the premier Science, Technology & Engineering curriculum in the nation. Project Lead the Way was developed in conjunction with universities to provide engaging, inquiry based, and highly-rigorous opportunities for students. The program is delivered to students through their core science classes and through Design Lab (Seminar Class) selections. Project Lead the Way is also used at Mission Vista High School, a school the VIDA students are given priority admission to attend. Learn more about Project Lead the Way HERE.


VIDA has fully adopted the "Project Lead the Way" Gateway program. The Gateway program provides multiple units that are incorporated in different ways into the student experience and learning. These are the ways that students have exposure to the PLTW Gateway program at VIDA. Please note that some of the paths are integrated into the Science Curriculum, and some are option that students can select into.


For more information about these offerings from PLTW, please CLICK HERE.


Shark Fin


What is a Design Lab?

VIDA Design Labs are a central element to the Magnet Theme experience at VIDA. They are specialized classes that foster student creativity, build technical skill (so that they can do something), and/or focus more deeply on the Design Thinking process.



Most students at VIDA will be eligible for an Elective class each year. Some students will be better served by additional time in an Intervention support class of some type. These placement decisions will be made by the Counselor, and parents/guardians will be notified of any student who is scheduled into an Intervention course, the justification for being scheduled into an Intervention course, and the requirements to exit from an Intervention course.