Starting your middle school journey
The transition from elementary to middle school is an important step in every student's education journey. In sixth grade, scholars have the opportunity to explore core and elective classes that stretch their minds; take learning to a whole new level with interdisciplinary teams; and contribute to an active and strong school community. Along the way, students find support from mission-driven teachers and staff who make each learner's individual academic, social and emotional needs a priority.
Middle school students are assigned to interdisciplinary teams, where students have two to six teacher advocates who specifically focus on the individual academic and social/emotional needs of each learner. Being part of a team helps students feel more connected to their peers and teachers, and provides scholars with a greater sense of identity, belonging and support.
Note: During the 2020-2021 school year, evolving virus activity means students will be moving in and out of three available learning models over the course of the year. Therefore, middle school interdisciplinary teams will not be implemented this school year.
Advisory is similar to a homeroom where a peer group meets daily with a teacher. Advisory time provides a structured curriculum, including college/career planning, social/emotional learning, and academic oversight. It also provides time for academic support and enrichment. Daily advisory:
- Provides students with a stronger sense of belonging within the team and at school;
- Allows for more personalized attention from teachers, with more focused attention to academic, social and emotional needs; and
- Offers opportunities to talk in a safe environment about topics relevant to young adolescents.
Sixth graders benefit from the support of eighth grade student mentors who help them confidently transition to middle school and contribute to a community where everyone feels welcomed. Every school has a student leadership program ("WEB: Where Everybody Belongs" or "GPS: Guides to Personal Success") that actively engages new students, builds community, and strengthens school climate and culture.
All grade 6-8 students receive a district-issued Chromebook for educational use. Learners use their device to do schoolwork both at home and at school. Mobile devices also allow students to experience a flipped classroom, which involves viewing (during non-classroom hours) a video of their teacher providing instruction and then using class time to dig deeper into that topic, ask questions, or do group work on a project.
Students also use Schoology, a learning management system that supports online learning, communication, and collaboration among teachers, students, and families.