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Middle School Concept

Middle School, not Junior High

We are a middle school, not a junior version of high school. To be effective in our teaching, we are developmentally appropriate for young adolescents, not for 16- to 18-year-olds nor for 8- and 9-year-olds. There is...
Author: Rick Wormeli
Number of views (14270)/Comments (0)/
Leading Learning at  the Middle Level

Leading Learning at the Middle Level

Understanding what makes the middle level different.

As a young child, I frequently made the trip with my parents from our home in Oregon's Willamette Valley to visit relatives in a small town in Washington State. I learned at an early age to recognize that we were...
Author: Patti Kinney
Number of views (9102)/Comments (0)/

Scheduling Time for Interdisciplinary Collaboration

Scheduling common planning time is vital to interdisciplinary instruction.

Professional collaboration, an integral part of the middle school concept, is a prerequisite for effective interdisciplinary instruction. When teachers have the opportunity to collaborate during the school day, they...
Author: Elliot Y. Merenbloom, Barbara A. Kalina
Number of views (11812)/Comments (0)/
This We Believe and the Common Core

This We Believe and the Common Core

How closely do the tenets of This We Believe align with Common Core ELA standards?

How is adoption of the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) affecting middle school instruction? At a meeting with teachers and principals from an array of schools honored with the Schools to Watch designation,...
Author: Nance S. Wilson, Laurie A. Ramirez, Carla K. Meyer
Number of views (11112)/Comments (0)/

Developmental Characteristics of Young Adolescents

Research Summary

Early adolescence is a distinct period of human growth and development situated between childhood and adolescence. During this remarkable stage of the life cycle, young adolescents, 10- to 15-year-olds, experience...
Author: Micki Caskey, Vincent A. Anfara, Jr.
Number of views (213876)/Comments (0)/
(Re)Discovering Social Emotional Learning

(Re)Discovering Social Emotional Learning

Others are discovering what middle grades educators knew all along.

At a recent national conference, I happened upon several sessions dedicated to Social Emotional Learning (SEL)—a framework that supports self-awareness, self-management, social awareness, relationship skills,...
Author: Sandy Cameli
Number of views (11191)/Comments (0)/
Looping—Making a Case for a Best Practice

Looping—Making a Case for a Best Practice

Schools that don't loop should consider the benefits of this proven practice.

Sensible, supported by research and practice, and doable. Looping is one practice that all middle schools should consider given its many benefits, including long-term student-teacher relationships that have proven...
Author: John H. Lounsbury & Gayle Andrews
Number of views (17732)/Comments (2)/
Tags: Looping
Nurturing Effective Middle Level Schools

Nurturing Effective Middle Level Schools

Support, passion, and positive relationships are ingredients of an effective middle level school.

Henry Ford said, “Whether you think that you can, or that you can’t, you are usually right.” I often share this quote with students who tell me they are not good at this or that subject or...
Author: Ann Edwards
Number of views (21033)/Comments (0)/
Middle Grades Educators: Carpe Diem!

Middle Grades Educators: Carpe Diem!

Middle grades educators must continue their work in the face of continuing challenges.

Take a minute and read the following paragraph. It contains a challenge that I believe we should all take to heart. The middle school is accepted in theory, and its possibilities have proved so alluring that the...
Author: John H. Lounsbury
Number of views (7007)/Comments (0)/
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Do We Still Believe?

Some things we as educators choose to forget: situations and events such as troublesome students, disastrous meetings with parents, or ugly disputes over which grade level gets to read (or has to read) Beowulf. Other...
Author: Jack Berckemeyer
Number of views (13258)/Comments (0)/
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