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Why Middle School at Emerson
Take a group of preadolescents, a classroom of 6th graders, in all their startling range of shapes and sizes. Self-identity is sprouting. Independence is in the air. Circles of significant relationships are expanding and peers are becoming more important. Popular culture is everywhere. Many students are taking more care in their appearance, and bodies - some bodies are beginning to grow in surprising ways. Across the classroom these changes occur in their own time. There’s a lot going on in the 6th grade!
Early adolescence is a critical juncture in social, cognitive, and emotional development. Emerson School believes that our Middle School is an exceptional environment for young people. Here’s why:
The Importance of Belonging
A growing body of evidence suggests that people of all ages are healthier and happier when they experience social belonging. At Emerson it’s all about close connections with trusted teachers, involved parents, peers, and younger students. Opportunities to connect and belong abound, from collaborative learning in the classroom, to music, art and drama, sports, and special interest groups. At Emerson, everyone knows everyone’s name. That’s especially important for middle schoolers.
Never Underestimate the Power of a Teacher
Emerson believes that exceptional teachers have far-reaching impact. Strong student-teacher connections flourish in our small learning community, and our middle schoolers reap rewards: self-esteem, academic motivation and achievement, and risk-taking in a supportive environment. Who could ask for better role models for adolescents? These are adults who are engaged, who teach to their passions, who guide, support, encourage, and care.
The Emerging Young Adult
Middle School is an optimal time to explore and develop individual interests and talents. Emerson is a place to do exactly this. Teachers encourage and guide, the curriculum flexes and accommodates, our students grow in many directions.
Emerson middle schoolers are respected and admired by our lower school students, and that’s a benefit to young and old alike. Their talents and achievements are admired at all-school events. Their knowledge and know-how shine in the cross-age activities. In addition, Emerson’s active and engaged faculty and families are superb examples of leadership for our middle schoolers.
The Impact of Transition
For our lower school students considering Middle School, Emerson’s K-8 model requires one less transition, one less move to a new school. Research* suggests an achievement loss following transition from elementary to middle school, including impacts on self-esteem, extracurricular participation, and leadership behaviors.
Emerson Middle School provides a unique path to young adulthood. We invite you to explore it!
*Alspaugh, J.W. (1998). Achievement Loss Associated with the Transition to Middle School and High School. Journal of Educational Research, 92(1), 20-25.
Blyth, D.A., Simmons,R.G., & Bush, D. (1978). The Transition into Early Adolescence: A Longitudinal Comparison of Youth in Two Educational Contexts. Sociology of Education, 51(3), 149-169.