Making the Most of Field Trips

middle schoolers on trip to the desert

Every spring the middle schoolers of Arthur Morgan School embark on 18 day long field trips.  The trips are the culmination of a five week academic unit in which the students have learned about a specific topic. Sometimes these topics are science based. Other times they are social studies or art based.  This year we are sending […]

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Why Life Skills are Important?

middle schoolers washing dishes

Recently there has been a lot of recognition of the unseen work of educators. Besides teaching math and science, they also fill the roles of counselors, nurses, and nutritionalists, just to name a few. School is increasingly becoming a place where students learn more than just academics. The reason why life skills are important lessons […]

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Teaching Middle Schoolers about MLK

Mandy Carter talking to students

Since Arthur Morgan School is a boarding school, our schedule works a little different.  While most students stay home on Martin Luther King Jr. day, our students already live on campus. We don’t feel it makes sense to celebrate King’s life and work by being apart in a our separate boarding houses. Instead, we come […]

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What is the Right Age for Boarding School?

middle school boy and girl smiling

When people first hear about Arthur Morgan School, they often ask, “Who goes to AMS?” For many, boarding school can bring up some pretty negative images.  They question why parents would choose to send their middle schoolers away. They speculate that some sort of behavior problem must exist. Their worries make sense. Military schools, wilderness […]

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Letter from the Clerk (An Ode to Compost)

compost bucket

In middle school, compost gets a bad rap. True, most middle schoolers probably never think about compost, but the ones at Arthur Morgan School definitely do. Every day at chores they take our food scraps to the chickens and compost bins. It’s not the least popular chore (that would be pre-wash), but it isn’t the […]

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Importance of Free Time for Students

middle schoolers hanging out

Arthur Morgan School’s fall semester is ending.  Students are leaving for winter break and won’t return to school for a month.  For many parents, this break might seem too long. Most public schools generally only offer 10 days for the holidays.  Having a long break has lots of beneficial potential though.  It can be a […]

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The Craft of Building Community

middle schooler using a band saw to make a gift

Building community is always hard work.  Sometimes it’s emotional work in which people need clearnesses to mediate their disagreements. Other times it’s intellectual work as staff and students try to create classes and schedules that fit everyone’s needs. Sometimes though, it’s just fun, artistic work.  It’s the holiday season.  People everywhere are buying gifts and […]

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Big Mouth Gives Insight on Puberty

Talking about puberty with a middle schooler is no easy task. When approached, their most common response is to hide their faces and call out, “Awkward!” Most of the time they just try to run away. It’s understandable. Experiencing major changes in their body and emotions is confusing. It’s normal for middle schoolers to feel […]

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December Unit Rounds Out Critical Thinking Based Learning

middle schoolers and teacher reading philosophy

When I ask people what they remember learning in middle school, they often reminisce about specific activities they did, like the time they burned a gummy bear to see how many calories it contained.  They remember specific moments that struck them as fun or inspiring. Most people can’t remember the reasons for these lessons or […]

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Real Talk on Student Led Conferences

middle schoolers looking at a portfolio

Student led conferences are quickly replacing parent teacher conferences as a way of communicating students’ academic progress. The idea is that students do most of the talking, informing their parents about their academic goals and how they think they are doing in each class.  Teachers find that student led conferences often lead to empowerment and students taking ownership over their […]

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