There are different challenges that come with teaching each grade level. Here are some tips directly from teachers on how they manage their middle school classes.
Establish your expectations and teaching procedures
Think about how papers and assignments will be distributed in your classroom. How will they be organized? How will students turn things in? What are your rules and penalties if they are not being followed? If there is no control in your classroom, no one is learning anything.
Consider creating a syllabus that includes your contact info, absent and late work policy, grading policy, and a brief overview of what your course will be about/learning objectives.
Have a sense of humor
Middle schoolers are sassy and hilarious. Don’t be afraid to laugh with them and incorporate silliness into your lesson plans. Just make sure you set guidelines first.
Follow through on your promises
If you say you’re going to call home or take points off a paper, do it. You must follow through every time. Some students may be sassy or defiant, but don’t back down. In the same respect, don’t make an unreasonable threat.
Get to know them
Take the time to get to know your students, as well as time for them to get to know you. Learn their names as quickly as possible, and show that you care. Greet them in the morning and tell them to have a great day when they leave class.
Consistency is key
Be fair, firm, and consistent. Keep your expectations and routines structured. You must also be compassionate. One should not come at the expense of the other. Give consequences without anger, and try asking a student why they have failed to meet your expectations before giving them a consequence.
Do you have any tips you would like to add? Share with us in the comments section below!