Contributed by Lisa Butera, Middle School Guidance Counselor
Recently, I walked in the shoes of a 6th grader for one day. I wanted to learn first hand what a day in the life of a 6th grader was really like. I got a locker, backpack, planner, and pencil pouch. The night before I spent over an hour completing math and science homework, along with the required 20 minutes of reading. I figured what I was going to eat for lunch (no refrigerator or microwave for me), picked out my “uniform” for the day, and gathered PE clothes for elective. I was ready, or at least as ready as I was going to get.
I arrived at 7:55, and I was nervous! Strange being nervous entering a building I’ve entered thousands of times before. But, there was no time for that – I had a lock to deal with and I couldn’t be late for my first class! Here’s a quick rundown of my day (a few highlights): began my personal narrative in language arts, learned MLA format, had a lesson on adjectives, did Daily Geography, survived the Geography Bee, learned all about
So, what did I learn? Lots!
1. It is nerve-racking starting middle school (even if it is just for a day).
2. The students are busy! It was weird being scheduled all day with only a minute here or there for myself. I forgot what it was like not to be in control of my day.
3. What happened 1 st period seemed like 3 days ago by the end of the day – I understand how students can forget. Reinforced the importance of a planner!
4. Speaking of
5. I was hungry! To survive the day, fuel up.
6. The teachers were impressive! I have worked with most of these teachers for many years, and I knew they were good teachers, but it was different having them as teachers rather than colleagues for a day. They each had their own style, but all of them knew their stuff, were engaging, structured their class brilliantly, and truly showed that they love what they do!
7. Students were happy, comfortable, free to ask questions, engaged in learning, and very supportive of each other.
8. Students were kind. They helped me throughout the day and seemed genuinely excited that I was “one of them” for the day. What an honor! How often do pre-teens welcome adults along for the ride?
9. Great things can happen when we push ourselves out of our comforter zones. I had to push myself to do Whacked Out Sports (art seemed safer), but I’m so glad I did it. Pillow polo was one of my top highlights – to let everything go and be all in with the kids!