Middle school years (Grades 6 – 8) can be a challenging time for many children as they navigate the transition from childhood to adolescence. During this period, they experience significant physical, social, and emotional changes, and they need a supportive environment to help them grow and develop into confident and responsible individuals. As a result, it is essential for schools to understand and cater to the unique needs of middle school-aged children.
Brookwood recognizes these needs and has developed a comprehensive program that nurtures and supports students during this critical period in their development. The School’s approach to education is based on the understanding that middle school students require a different type of learning experience than younger or older students. Here are some ways in which Brookwood’s program meets the unique needs of middle school-aged children:
Middle school-aged children are curious and thrive on hands-on, interdisciplinary learning. Brookwood School’s program offers a rigorous curriculum that connects different disciplines and encourages students to think critically and creatively. The curriculum includes experiential learning opportunities such as field trips, projects, and collaborations. By approaching learning through this way, our faculty focus on instilling a love of learning.
In addition to our challenging academic curriculum, Brookwood offers a variety of extracurricular activities that are integrated into the school day. All students participate in athletics, clubs, the arts, and world language. This comprehensive program enables students to explore interests and passions while developing important skills such as teamwork, leadership, creativity, and cultural competency. With a wide range of extracurricular opportunities, Brookwood ensures that students have a well-rounded education that also develops intangible skills.
Emphasis on Social and Emotional Learning (SEL)
Middle school students need to develop social and emotional skills to navigate the complexities of their changing social world. Brookwood’s SEL program aims to help students develop self-awareness, self-management, social awareness, relationship skills, stress management, and responsible decision-making. This program enables students to develop a positive self-image, empathy, and a sense of community.
Middle school students need a supportive environment that recognizes and values their individuality. As 10 – 14 year olds are figuring out who they are and growing more independent from their parents, their friend group and where they belong matter. At Brookwood, we find many different ways for students to belong (Heron House, athletics teams, rotating lunch tables, clubs with students that have similar interests). Brookwood’s small class sizes enable teachers to provide personalized attention to students and build relationships that support their academic and emotional growth. Additionally, the Upper School’s advisory program provides students with a dedicated adult who serves as a mentor and supports them in setting and achieving personal goals.
Focus on Personal Growth and Development (PGD)
Middle school-aged children are developing their sense of identity and values. Brookwood’s PGD program fosters the development of positive character traits such as respect, responsibility, and compassion. This program aims to help students become ethical and responsible members of their community.
When kids feel valued and cared for, they focus, work hard and meet the demands of the challenging curriculum. By nurturing and supporting students during this critical period in their development, Brookwood prepares them to become confident, responsible, and ready for whatever comes next.