Okay, this week began my third year of teaching middle school. I probably still teach more like a high school teacher, if indeed there is any difference, but I’m not so shocked anymore by the size of the boys and the volume of their voices. I’ve begun to think it would be a good idea to separate the genders of kids in some classes at the middle school level. The boys and girls are miles apart in maturity at this age, and the separation seems like a no-brainer to me. In my classroom are the girls, who although gregarious can generally hold it together for the 100 minutes of English class that I must
put them through. provide to them. The boys have a hard time holding it together for ten minutes.
I imagine a class in which we teach at least half of the class on the track. “When you hear a preposition, take one giant step forward. If you year an adjective, jump three times.” You could play grammar tag, Mother-May-I and Duck-Duck-Goose, all using grammar terms. The girls would like this too, but are also able to sit and read and write at this age without nearly the agony as it causes the boys. And without the boys in the room, they could forget about how they look long enough to think about something schooly. Our high school is trying something like this. I would love it if we could find reason to try it at the middle school level.