Submitted by Laguna Beach Unified School District:
Thurston Middle School’s mission is to “provide an exemplary academic and character education that developmentally challenges students towards a collegiate path of excellence.”
Assisting students to progress and build the necessary tools toward this goal are three programs: 6 for 6th, 7 for 7th and 8 for 8th. The 6 for 6th program was created last year to help ensure that incoming 6th grade students experienced a smoother progression into middle school. By sending a consistent message and making 6th grade information readily available, the program encouraged students to be more organized and become more successful at school. This positive outcome led to the program’s expansion for students in 7-8 grades.
Thurston Middle School Principal Jennifer Salberg explains, “In order for students to have every opportunity to be successful at school, it is important to send a positive, consistent message throughout the day. Our 6 for 6th, 7 for 7th and 8 for 8th does just that. These school-wide expectations allow our students to succeed in all classrooms – all day!”
The programs are easily identified with green “6”, yellow “7” and blue “8” campus posters and online icons with additional grade level information on the TMS page on the District’s website at www.lbusd.org.
Math teacher Maria Hoffman shares some of the benefits for students making the transition to middle school: “6 for 6 is a school wide effort to help 6th graders stay organized. Because teachers here are consistent about emphasizing support tools we create a school culture where students know what they need to do to be successful.”
The 7 for 7th program builds upon the foundation and skills established the previous year. Language Arts teacher Amy Cochren remarks, “Having course information and handouts available on teacher web pages allows students and parents the information needed for success! Aeries and the class websites are wonderful communication tools.”
To help ensure that 8th grade students are reaching their full potential and are prepared for high school, the 8 for 8th is a team effort that builds upon the 6 for 6th and 7 for 7th foundation.
Social studies and ELD teacher Michelle Martinez comments, “The 8 for 8th, like the 6 for 6th, is a great tool for students and parents to see teacher blogs and 8th grade information all in one spot. It is also a great progression of skills for 8th graders with ‘Achieve’ added to prepare them for high school and accomplish everything to the best of their ability.”