Higgins Middle School

Philosophy

This middle school will give the students the best transition between elementary and high school.


This middle school will be able to nurture the students with their physical development, mental growth, academic progress, community relations, and adaptation to the changing society.

Vision

The vision for Higgins Middle School is to have an environment that encourages learning, having high expectations for teachers and students, strong advisory programs, and a balanced curriculum. The school will have a direct focus on enhancing diversity and to have involvement with the family/community.

Organizational Components

The school will have the following inside:

  • Administrative Office
  • Art facility
  • Cafeteria
  • Auditorium
  • Classroom
  • Common areas/courtyards
  • Gymnasium
  • Health Services
  • Lobby
  • Media Center
  • Multipurpose Rooms
  • Music Room
  • Restrooms
  • Science Facility

Organizational Components

Organization Pattern: Higgins Middle School has a organization pattern of chronological order going from grade sixth to eighth grade. Chronological order is with an order of time. Students start middle school in sixth grade and eventually moves forward to eighth grade. After eighth grade, the next step is going to high school.


Interdisciplinary Team Organization: This is going to overall effect the students learning environment. Teaming is important because it promotes student's overall development and learning. Teachers feel a sense of accomplishment when they are involved with teaming because it has a positive impact. In Higgins middle school, the teams will be within the three grade levels (sixth through eighth), and they will be divided into 3 teams within the grade level. With the teams within the grade level, they will be 2 teachers for each group. The students will be grouped by ability. It will be hetero-genus. It is shown that teams lead to a positive student attitude, increased student achievement, and increased parental contacts.


Advisory Program: Advisory programs are to build the community and the needs of adolescents, whether it is socially and emotionally. Teachers and students during advisory see if the students have any concerns, and planning for high school. An advisory program creates and Adult Advocate. An Adult Advocate could be a mentor, representative, or a cheerleader. It is important for students to have an Adult Advocate is to have someone they can relate to. The different Advisory Topics would consist of: Team building, expectations, Fun Activities, and Self-Identity.


Advisory Ideas

Self Esteem: Self-esteem has been compared to a bucket of water. It starts out full when we're born, but whenever we develop negative beliefs about ourselves, it's like poking little holes in that bucket and our self-esteem drips out.* Have the group brainstorm a list of things we do or say to ourselves or to others that pokes holes in the self-esteem bucket. Put this list on the wall to serve as a constant reminder.


Fun Activity: . Birthday Line Up....students line up in order of their birthday without talking

Curriculum: Core Subjects

The core subjects are important because we have to ability to use them in everyday life without realizing it. When a student is in college, the core subjects are in your required classes to get a degree. Without the basics of the core subjects in middle schools, the students wouldn't be adequately prepared to make progress in college. Also, most jobs within a career has an emphasis in Math, English, and Science for example. The core subjects will be in the highest priority in Higgins Middle School because we want our students prepared to have the basic skills for high school, college, and beyond.

Curriculum: Non-Core Subjects

Non-Core subjects are important because it feeds into a student's passions. It feeds into the creative side of a student. This could apply to the theory of multiple intelligences by Howard Gardner. Every student has a different ability to explore, and at Higgins Middle School, we will explore just that. We would have classes and programs for students to enhance their creativity. Examples are Music classes, Visual Arts programs, and language seminars.

Curriculum: Special Learning Opportunities

Higgins middle school has a series of special learning opportunities to take their academics and personal life to the next level.


Honors classes: Honors classes are designed for students who consistently learn quickly and enjoy the challenge of intense, in-depth learning. Honors courses include an emphasis on abstract material and require students to have self-discipline and the commitment to meet rigorous expectations.


Exploratory World Language:

Exploratory World Language may be offered in grades 6, 7 and 8. This yearlong course allows students to explore French, German, Latin and Spanish and introduces the importance of sign language.


Students will also be able to participate in year-long courses in Art, Band, Chorus, and Theater.

Instruction

Higgins middle school will use independent study, learning groups, and enrichment programs to help out the needs of advanced learners. The teachers will use formative and summative assessments to measure student progress. Teachers will use lower-level assessments and higher-level assessments to give the students a balance of learning. The teachers will give formative assessments every lesson and the materials used in class be aligned with the specific learning objectives. Also, diagnostic assessments will be used. Diagnostic assessments are great ways to get information from students before covering the material. They can help to inform instruction and student progress.

Family and Community Contribution

Student Learning Opportunities: A way that family members can help their children succeed in school is encouraging their child to read. This prevents their children from being behind reading levels. The earlier the child starts to read, the better. Talking and listening to your child is very important in their school's success. Children don't read well is because they don't hear a lot of talking at home and children who don't listen at home usually have trouble following directions and disrupts class. It should be encouraged for your child to be responsible and to work independently. These are important qualities for school success. Another thing is fully cooperating with the teachers and the school. Most teachers say they don't receive that much information if there is a problem at home and the parents don't know about what the school expects out of their job. It is the main responsibility for the teachers and parents to work together to ensure the best success for the child.


Overall Success of School: The family and community is very important when it comes to a students success. Students develop valuable skills that are different from inside of the classroom. Extracurricular activities are an example. Extracurricular activities could consist of: Basketball, Volunteering, Family Activities, and Hobbies. In extracurricular activities students learn about leadership, problem solving, time management, teamwork, and cooperation.