Research Summaries

Research Summaries are abbreviated reviews of professional literature that inform middle level education policy and practice and provide basic information about the education of young adolescents for parents and community members. The Research Advisory Committee of AMLE is currently seeking submissions.

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Transitioning Young Adolescents from Elementary to Middle School

Middle school can be an exciting and terrifying time for students transitioning from elementary to middle school. By definition, transition means the change from one place, state of being, or condition to another...

Understanding and Addressing the Challenges of Teaching Middle Grades Mathematics Conceptually

Understanding students' academic needs and developing curricula to address them has always been a challenge for middle level educators. Competing perspectives on academic rigor and external demands for accountability...

Social Media for Middle Level Classrooms

Seventh grade teacher Elizabeth Delmatoff piloted a social media program in her Portland, Oregon classroom. By the end of the year, 20% of students school-wide were completing additional assignments for no credit,...

Professional Learning and Professional Development in the Middle Grades

Practitioners, policymakers, and researchers have touted the importance of improving educator quality as fundamental to enhancing school and student outcomes (Darling-Hammond, Wei, Andree, Richardson, & Orphanos,...

Motivation: Understanding and Responding to Individual Differences

A basic educational principle is that no matter how well teachers design their instruction, students who refuse to engage can ensure the teachers' instruction will come to naught. This simple truth leads teachers on a...

Developmental Characteristics of Young Adolescents

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...

Coaching Teacher Dispositions

We know that educators who "value young adolescents and are prepared to teach them" are a key component to middle level students' success (AMLE, 2010, p. 15). Middle level teachers must have the appropriate knowledge,...

Directions for Literacy Leaders to Support Underachieving Middle Level Students’ Reading Achievement

The purpose of this research summary revolves around the collection of empirical work published within the last decade that focuses on middle level students most in need of support for their reading achievement....

Writing in Middle Grades Mathematics

Current educational reform calls for middle grades students who have the foundational skills to be "high school" ready (Williams, Rosin & Kirst, 2011). The Common Core State Standards Initiative (2010) echoes this...

Formative Assessment Practices in Successful Middle Level Classrooms

One of the hallmarks of middle level education is the process of understanding students and responding to their needs. In recent years, researchers have stressed the role of assessment in this process. As expectations...
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