Is anyone else nervous about the big jump from elementary to middle school? I know our fifth graders are all ready for the next step, but many parents are not.
Size matters. The schools are considerably larger - not necessarily class sizes, but the overall student population.
Middle school means having more teachers for different subject. This could be a positive. It forces the kids to deal with all types of personalities and expectations from different teachers in authority over them. Also, say there is that one teacher that is lacking in um, personal tact with her students - at least your kid will only have her for one class.
No recess. Even adults could use a 'recess' during the work day, so to think that the kids will not have that time to unwind, run around and be physical means that they'll have to have more self-control in the classroom as sixth graders.
P.E. locker room. We all remember a few kids in the eighth grade who were teased while changing in the locker room for one reason or another. That's normal growing up stuff. What is not normal is when other kids are sneaking their cell phones around snapping photos of their "friends" changing and then texting them to classmates, including the males. You see where I'm going here. While some behavior and curiosities are the norm for tweens breaking out into their new found sixth grade freedom (and hormones), some things should be addressed by parents on what is and is not appropriate. Kids today found with images of underage girls on their phone, even if it was innocently sent to them as a joke - the parents of the girl can press the issue in court and that boy, also underage, can be branded as a 'predator' - something that will follow him for years and the list you look on near your neighborhood - his name will be on that. It does not matter that he was underage.
This trend is disturbing and I've heard it from two different camps at two local middle schools with great reputations, you know, the school districts where your Realtor recommends you buy for resale value later...
Middle school parents, we have a job to do as parents and while some of those talks may not be easy, they are needed. Start the relationship and talks going now with your kids so it won't seem awkward later when bigger issues might arise.