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"Just Joking"— Helping Students Understand When Teasing Hurts

"Just Joking"— Helping Students Understand When Teasing Hurts

No matter what you teach, if you are a middle school teacher you want to set up some norms and guidelines for your classroom. Even better, you want to be on the same page with the other teachers. But this is middle...
Author: Rosalind Wiseman
Number of views (6489)/Comments (0)/
Tags: Safety
Wayside Teaching Revisited

Wayside Teaching Revisited

Revisiting the value of informal teaching beyond planned instruction.

Wayside teaching was first introduced in the May 1987 "As I See It" column in the Middle School Journal—30 years ago. Here is a slightly modified version of it, particularly for all those educators who came to...
Author: John H. Lounsbury
Number of views (3253)/Comments (0)/
Moment by Moment: An Instructional Approach to Positive Behavior

Moment by Moment: An Instructional Approach to Positive Behavior

Positive student behavior develops from expectations, relationships, and direct instruction.

Although many schoolwide discipline efforts focus on systems, rules, and consequences, they often overlook effective response strategies to students' misbehavior. Without straightforward approaches to teach,...
Author: Tricia Wells
Number of views (5055)/Comments (1)/
Literature Circles: Student-Driven Instruction

Literature Circles: Student-Driven Instruction

Literature circles bring reading to life for these sixth graders.

What did we just read? I am so bored! Why are we reading this? What's the point? Sound familiar? These were some of the responses to reading that I received during my first year teaching bright and talented sixth...
Author: Samantha Schnoor
Number of views (3961)/Comments (0)/

Food for Thought: The 16 Characteristics of an Effective and Amazing Middle School

Every one and every school has a story made up of ingredients. When I taught Basic English in Harrisonburg, Virginia, I often had food on my mind. It wasn't because I was particularly hungry or because I was creating...
Author: Dru Tomlin
Number of views (2364)/Comments (0)/
Tags:
Academic Lifeguards: Saving Students

Academic Lifeguards: Saving Students

Academic lifeguards are on duty, on guard, and willing to jump in when necessary.

You are a lifeguard on a beach and you see a child engulfed by an enormous wave, then struggling to keep her head above water. You use every skill you have to prevent the child from drowning. Academic lifeguards are...
Author: Sherri Nelson
Number of views (3747)/Comments (0)/
Tags: RTI
Making a New Language Stick with Students

Making a New Language Stick with Students

Best online resources to use at home and school

There's a reason people say, "It's like learning a new language!" when learning something that's difficult—it takes practice, diligence and off-hours studying to become fluent in a new language. What's more,...
Author: Jessica Thiefels
Number of views (2713)/Comments (0)/
Topics: Teaching
Information Overload: Giving Students the Tools They Need to Navigate the Digital World

Information Overload: Giving Students the Tools They Need to Navigate the Digital World

A few years ago, I wrote an article for students about the surprising amount of sugar that Americans eat. Toward the end of the article, after explaining how sugar is added to some foods you wouldn't expect (crackers!...
Author: Suzanne Zimbler
Number of views (4012)/Comments (0)/

For decades, the battle between true middle level education and financial shortcuts has raged. Isn't it time that what's best for kids wins this battle?

The conflict between doing more with less and doing what is right and just for young adolescents is a difficult one for middle level educators to confront. For example, when district leaders determine that program...
Author: Tom Burton
Number of views (2691)/Comments (0)/
Making a Middle School Magazine

Making a Middle School Magazine

A student-produced magazine celebrates middle level student voice.

In October 2015, a team of seven editors—all eighth grade boys at St. Christopher's School in Richmond, Virginia—met during lunch to compare two digital publishing platforms. They judged entries for the...
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