Middle School

Here’s Why Middle School Recess Is Important

In Fairfax County, Virginia, thousands of middle school students experience what most of their peers leave behind in elementary school — recess. The break is only 15 minutes long, but at Rocky Run Middle School (about 25 miles west of the nation’s capital), the seventh and eighth graders make the most of one of the few stretches of time in school that they can truly call their own. Fairfax County schools, a district of around…

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Dear Math Letters Can Help Overcome Math Dread

Many students fail to understand the value of math, and some grow to hate it. 15-year veteran math teacher, Sarah Strong, and her high school student, Gigi Butterfield, strove o discover the root of this problem by addressing concerns about negativity around teaching and learning math and why kids hate math (at least some of them). Digging into the feelings math evoked in hundreds of middle and high school students—that math is unnecessary, oppressive, and…

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The Impact of Reading Struggles on Older Students

When students get to middle and high school without strong reading skills, the results can be devastating. In response to a recent survey about reading struggles, dozens of parents and educators described secondary students who refuse to read out loud for fear of being teased, who can’t understand math word problems or science vocabulary, and gradually give up on school altogether. They worried such students face poor job prospects and bleak futures, not to mention…

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Middle-Schoolers Are Struggling, So How Can We Help?

To understand the pandemic’s impact on middle-schoolers, picture the pain of lunchtime. A bunch of uncomfortable adolescents are navigating social distancing rules while figuring out when and if to take down their masks. It’s not going well. Some have given up eating lunch entirely, which worries Phyllis Fagell, a school counselor and author of the book, “Middle School Matters.” She knows this age group. And she knows all this anxiety is not just about masks.…

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These Button Poetry Slam Poets Light Up Classrooms

If you ask the average person what they learned about poetry in school, they might remember suffering through a few 17th-century English poets, but poetry in the classroom doesn’t have to be stuffy. Modern poetry can give students a chance to be creative, break the rules, and express themselves. In a fun and open environment, students can think of poetry as an art class with words. They can get creative with language, rhyme, and meter;…

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Middle School Students Will Love These Podcasts

Podcasts have been growing in popularity over the past few years, and it’s more commonplace than not for adults to have a few favorites. It’s basically radio that is personalized to a topic in which you are especially interested–what’s not to like? Kids can also join in the trend! See our list below for some great podcasts for middle school children.  1. The Allusionist. Explore the English language, with all its oddities! Filled with good humor and…

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