George Lucas Educational Foundation

6-8 Middle School

Explore and share tips, strategies, and resources for helping students develop in grades 6-8.

  • A Framework for Student Goal-Setting

    When middle and high school students set short- and long-term goals, they can see a path to the success they hope for.
    Maurice J. Elias
  • Intention-Setting in the Classroom

    Asking middle school students to focus on their guiding principles can lead them to more productive individual and group work.
  • Breaking SEL Down Into Manageable Practices

    Adaptable and accessible ‘kernels' make teaching skills like self-management, focus, and emotional regulation easier.
  • Reading Aloud to Middle School Students

    Hearing books read aloud benefits older students, enhancing language arts instruction and building a community of readers.
    Kasey Short
  • How to Increase Participation by Asking Better Questions

    Framing questions the right way—and scaffolding the right kinds of responses—can help teachers avoid blank stares and awkward silences.
  • There’s a Cell Phone in Your Student’s Head

    A 2017 study found that cell phones that were turned off and stashed away silently reasserted themselves—distracting working students anyway.
  • The Power of Short Writing Assignments

    Brief writing prompts and responses help students in any discipline.
  • A Student-Driven Approach to Experiential Learning

    See how a Reggio Emilia–inspired elementary school in Australia fosters student interests to spark curiosity and joy in learning.
  • A Simple Practice Yields Big Results in Middle School for Less Than $2

    A new study shows how a low-cost writing exercise improves the sense of belonging for incoming middle school students.
  • Inviting Participation With Thumbs-Up Responses

    A quick assessment strategy replaces raised hands, encouraging more students to contribute by accommodating their different processing needs.
  • The Bill of Rights Through the Lens of Dystopian Tales

    One teacher offers a guide to help students compare the freedoms lost in dystopian novels with the freedoms secured by the Bill of Rights.
  • The Power of Positive Communication

    Setting a goal of positive contact with every student’s family helped a middle school teacher deepen relationships and boost her own morale.
  • Social Contracts Foster Community in the Classroom

    When students and teachers collaborate to create shared behavior expectations, the whole class is invested in the norms.
  • Optimizing Station Rotations in Blended Learning

    Using three stations effectively—teacher-led, online, and offline—should provide your students with plenty of ways to collaborate.
  • An Engaging Word Game Helps Students Grasp Implicit Bias

    A simple fill-in-the-blank exercise helped students understand the power of words and the way they might convey unspoken beliefs.