Surviving and Thriving in Middle School/Junior High

[This page is still under construction]

The middle school years can be like a trip to a fashion boutique where kids are trying on new personalities and are surveying “people-styles”, looking for a good fit for themselves. Family rules and keeping track of what your young teen is up to are more important than ever – including at school.

Here are five tips for successful transitions during the middle school years:

  • Keep talking to your student. Work at keeping the lines of communication open. Talk to your student about what he or she is learning. Be generous with praise for good efforts and encourage persistence.
  • Check on homework, test scores, and attendance regularly. Schools now use websites to inform parents about their students’ progress. This can provide great conversation starters.
  • Connect with a mentor. There are many methods schools use to transition students from a “one teacher” model to a multiple class schedule. Make sure there is at least one adult school employee who is connected to your child. This person should know your child by sight and by name and be interested in her academic success. Attend Back to School night or the first Parent Teacher Conference to determine who that person is for your child. If necessary, find out who your child’s favorite teacher is and visit him or her. Make sure the teacher knows he or she can contact you if there are concerns about your child at school.
  • Join PTA. Volunteering at the school gives you insight into your child’s world. It is different from what you remember! Working with other parents and school staff helps you learn how to help your child when he struggles.
  • Connect your child’s plan with the plan that the school is developing. The middle school years are usually the student’s first opportunity to choose elective classes. Speak with counselors about your child’s Family Education Plan and the goals you are helping her to attain. This is a good time to talk about the occupations of various community members and watch for signs of interes

Middle School Parent Links:

                     It's not too early to start talking about college--Step UP Utah

                     Prepare for an occupation solving puzzles and playing games. That takes math!

                     The Art of the Parent Teacher Conference