Helping Kids Transition to Middle School

Helping Kids Transition to Middle School

A perspective view of a stack of grey metal school lockers with combination locks and one with an open door on an isolated background

By Rachele Alpine Mielke

The start of the school year is a time filled with excitement, anticipation, and a little bit of nervousness, especially if your child is starting at a new school. Middle school can be a big change for many students and families, so we went straight to the source for advice, asking middle school students for tips on how to help ease the transition.

“Lockers are AWESOME, but they are a lot harder to take care of than you expect. If it gets messy, you might lose an important paper. Keep your locker organized.” — Michelle Rayner (6th grade)

Listen to your teachers. Entering middle school is like entering a new school and the best way to help yourself in a new school is to listen.”— Belle Scarano (6th grade)

“I was so nervous the night before school I almost threw up. I was afraid that I would be lost or I wouldn’t have friends. But I think everyone is probably just as nervous. Try wearing an outfit that you feel comfortable or happy in. And if you are nice to other people, they will be nice to you.”
— Julianna Singer (7th Grade)

“A lot of the classes you take (especially electives) are super interesting. Most schools only have a few really mean kids, and if they keep bothering you, you should either tell a teacher, or just ignore them. Before you tell a teacher, try ignoring them, because when people bully people, it is because they want a reaction. Focus on positive friends and family.” — Will Hach (8th Grade)

“In middle school, expect your group of friends to change and do not take it personally. The best way to deal with the change is to be open to new friendships. What worked best for me was joining band and the soccer team, where I met kids with the same interests.” — Dillon Hull (8th grade)

Choose the right friends when you get to middle school. You want to make friends with people that make good choices and don’t want to get in trouble. If someone is really your friend, they will understand if you don’t want to do something.” — Olivia Selfrick (7th Grade)

“One of the biggest myths is that lunches are better. It’s just bigger portions. Middle school is great; you should enjoy it.” — Gavin LaBoe (8th grade)

“When I started middle school, I never knew how much walking there would be. Classes are harder because you have to walk to them and then each class is about completely different stuff and sometimes you forget things. Try to write down things you think are really important.”— Colin Hunter (7th grade)

“My middle school advice is to always bring extra pencils to class. Teachers don’t like when you ask for a pencil.” — Libby Rigo (6th grade)

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