The 8-9 Division bridges the non-traditional structure and close supervision of the 6-7 Division and the more traditional, college-preparatory structure of the 10-12 Division. The advisory group, consisting of 8 to 10 students and an assigned adviser, is the central Academy group in this division. Early in the year, advisory groups eat lunch together daily; later, in addition to periodic group meetings, students and advisers meet individually.

The 8-9 Division schedule follows a 10-day rotation, with each day containing eight class periods. Some classes still involve interdisciplinary assignments, similar to those in the 6-7 Division, but many follow a more traditional single-subject pattern. Much of the course work in individual classes is project-based. There is also time for before- and after-school special interest activities and clubs.

The foundation of teaching and guidance in the 8-9 Division is a developmentally appropriate curriculum emphasizing personal and academic growth in a safe, structured environment. Students are encouraged to seek new challenges, persevere in the face of setbacks, and develop discipline that is internal rather than external.

McKinnon Hall (formerly known as North Hall) houses the 8-9 Division. Except for science, visual arts, and performing arts, most classwork takes place there. A number of activities take place outside the classroom, including the 8th Grade Retreat, the Medieval Festival, and the Dig. The Academy also sponsors dances, ice cream socials, and other activities designed by students in 8-9, for students in 8-9.

Community and Global Citizenship

The goals in the 8-9 Division are to engage students in service to the campus community, and to have them learn about and partner with local non-profit agencies. They are required to do two hours on-campus service and two hours off-campus service with a local non-profit or community organization.

Coursework in Grades 8-9

Counseling and Human Development
Grade 8: Health Issues 8

Grade 8: English 8
Grade 9: English I

Experiential Education
Grade 8: 8th Grade Retreat
Grade 9: Freshman Expedition

Grade 8: World History to 800 C.E.
Grade 9: World History to 1789

Grade 8: Pre-Algebra/Mathematics 8, Mathematics 8, or Algebra/Geometry for Eighth Only
Grade 9: Algebra I, Algebra I/Geometry, or Geometry/Algebra II for Ninth Grade

Performing Arts

Physical Education

Grade 8: Earth Systems
Grade 9: Physics I and Chemistry I

Electives (grade 9): Visual Basic A, Visual Basic B, C++ I, C++ II, Graphics and Simulations, Java I, Mobile Robotics I, and Mobile Robotics II.

Visual Arts

World Languages


In grades 8 through 12, advisers oversee a student’s academic progress, including:
  • Arranging parent-teacher meetings
  • Keeping the appropriate division head informed about pertinent information about an advisee
  • Periodically reviewing the advisee's attendance record
  • Communicating with the advisee and his or her family
  • Playing a critical role in the course selection process each spring
The adviser's interest is more than solely academic; it includes extracurricular and non-school activities, personal growth, and the development of short- and long-term goals. The adviser is the first person to call in the event of any difficulty involving a student. Parents and advisers are encouraged to communicate regularly.

In general, students in the 8-9 Division are assigned one of their classroom teachers as an adviser. In the 10-12 Division, each student selects an adviser. That person is typically a teacher or a coach with whom they have frequent contact.
Albuquerque Academy is a private, coeducational, college preparatory day school serving middle school and high school students in grades 6 through 12, located in Albuquerque, NM.


6400 Wyoming Blvd NE
Albuquerque, New Mexico 87109-3899
ph: 505-828-3200