Top Five Tips from a Middle School Teacher to the Parents and Students
The following top five tips are from Stephanie’s mother, who is a middle school teacher. She teaches sixth, seventh and eighth grade students. These tips come from years of watching students struggle and being a mother of three middle school students.
Tip Number 5 – Get the supply list early. Students feel secure when they have all of the items needed for their different classes. Teachers can jump right into the curriculum when students have requested supplies.
Tip Number 4 – Attend orientation or open house before the first school day. Many students feel less stress and anxiety when they have been able to tour the building. Knowing where the bathrooms, cafeteria, gym and classrooms are in a building make students feel better about the first day of school.
Tip Number 3 – Make a couple copies of the student schedule. Middle school students can have up to nine teachers in a day. This is very different from elementary school. Students can break down in tears when they lose their schedule and don’t know where to go after a class.
Tip Number 2 – The student should know the parent’s email address. One easy way for teachers to communicate with parents is through email. Teachers generally ask for the email address on the first day so that they can put it in their grade book computer program. Teachers can send grade reports, missing homework assignments and quick notes through email to parents.
Tip Number 1 – Stay organized and keep up with assignments. Use an agenda book to write down all assignments and test dates. Keep papers organized in folders or in a large binder. A locker stuffed full of random papers is usually an indicator of a student who is struggling academically.
Stephanie and I agree that staying organized is key to a successful year at the middle school. Parents need to help their children become acclimated to the new school. However, students need to learn that with age also comes more responsibility.