Category: Articles

All in One Place: Helping Kids Get Organized

In a few weeks, new middle schoolers will encounter challenges unlike any they’ve seen before: a half-dozen teachers making daily assignments, new afterschool choices, more homework. How’s a kid to keep track of it all? Always-organized Frank Buck suggests consolidation.

The 3 Things Our Middle Schoolers Need Most

With the start of a new school year approaching, how can we make sure our middle school students are getting the support they need for an academically and personally successful school year? School leader Rhonda Neal Waltman offers three effective strategies.

MiddleWeb’s Most-Read Posts of 2019 (So Far)

Browse our top 10 posts since January 1. Topics include fair grading, dyslexia, teaching ELLs academic vocabulary, connecting with students, teacher buy-in, and SEL for MS’ers. Plus, practical tips on quick-writes, class starters, and “helping students remember stuff.”

7 Ways Our Data Buy-in Builds School Capacity

While the leaders of Algonquin Middle School do not claim to be “on the cutting edge of utilizing data in every aspect of our school’s program,” AMS teachers and staff are making headway with seven action steps that are benefiting students, says principal Rob Messia.

Students Will Thrive in a Culture of Effort and Joy

NBCT and new principal Rita Platt shares the five beliefs that make up her teaching philosophy and serve as the framework of her new book Working Hard, Working Happy. Learn what she “knows to be true about teaching and learning” and why you might want a credo of your own.

How Leaders Develop Stakeholder Ownership

Efforts to improve your school will only be successful with widespread support and ownership. This means involving all stakeholders: teachers, staff, families, and community voices. Leadership consultants Ron Williamson and Barbara Blackburn offer some helpful guidelines.

Spelling Matters in Middle School, Too

Want to help middle school students improve their reading skills? Mark Weakland suggests providing direct and explicit spelling instruction. Emphasizing syllables – roots and affixes – offers lots of building blocks for students. Weakland includes differentiation tips and activity ideas.

Some Lessons I Learned as a First Year Admin

Teaching and instructional coaching weren’t all the prep DeAnna Miller needed when she signed on as a new middle school assistant principal last fall. A year later she looks back at the challenges she faced and the solutions she discovered as she preps for another year.

How 31 Blog Posts Are Changing My Practice

Raised in rural Alberta, Canada, Brent Gilson set out to broaden his understanding of racial and cultural diversity, both to improve his teaching and to raise awareness among his mostly white middle grades students. Taking part in the #31DaysIBPOC Twitter project has been a revelation.