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This is a course that incorporates philosophical and practical elements of middle school education. Throughout the semester, we will focus on the sociological and academic factors that have resulted in the creation of a distinct middle school learning environment. We will develop strategies for motivation, instruction, assessment and classroom management in a middle school environment; we will learn how to create a successful guidance structures and explore ways of facilitating collaboration and communication among students, teachers, staff and parents. Essentially, we will try to answer the following essential question: How can we, as middle school teachers support our students as they work to meet their physical, social, emotional, and intellectual development needs?

This course will explore curriculum approaches, teaching and assessment strategies, classroom management, and other critical issues in teaching at the middle childhood and adolescence levels. Students will become familiar with the ways in which middle and high schools function, both within their buildings and within their broader communities. Essentially we will be trying to answer a very complicated question: How can teachers behave in the classroom to make it more likely that their students will learn? In fact, that will be the essay question for your final exam.

From the Course Description:

This course will prepare students to use technology to acquire and teach new content knowledge about
important topics in their respective program content area. We will examine best practices for teaching with technology, and the student will learn to appropriately use classroom hardware, the Internet, media, software tools, and mobile apps to deepen knowledge of a significant topic, and plan for classroom instruction building on that knowledge.  

This is a course to test out Moodle functionality, focusing especially on student autonomy and communication.