Making Curriculum Pop

Middle School / Jr. High Group


Middle School / Jr. High Group

Members: 402
Latest Activity: Jun 1, 2019

Discussion Forum

LIST: 10 Summer Movies to Broaden Kids' Perspectives

Started by Ryan Goble Jun 1, 2019.

IDEA: Book Steps!

Started by Ryan Goble Apr 22, 2019.

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Comment by Roberta Seret on March 14, 2016 at 10:35am

Any teacher in the New York area, please get in touch if you're interested in a screening at the United Nations. I offer a free screening and briefing for any class that purchases a class set of my new textbook.

Comment by Roberta Seret on March 14, 2016 at 10:34am

Please check out my new textbook for middle school students:

Comment by Stergios Botzakis on December 6, 2015 at 5:04pm

I reviewed Stuck in the Middle here: in case you want some more info about the book...

Comment by Kevin Dooley on December 6, 2015 at 4:28am

It was recommended that I post here an illustrated anthology of stories for middle schoolers called "Stuck in the Middle: 17 Comics from an Unpleasant Age" edited by Ariel Schrag. (  Some of the stories are rough, but others are great!

Comment by Anna J. Small Roseboro on August 24, 2013 at 3:10pm

John, consider myths - Greek and Roman, as well as the river as a metaphor for journey. This would be a good time to invite students to consider issues of ecology, considering the fact that Egyptian life depended on the flooding of the Nile.  In what ways are contemporary people dependent on the waterways/rivers in the country. 

As students look at the kinds of social issues that arose in ancient river civilizations, ask them to consider similarities to issues that arise today.  Have students select current events and decide how ancient laws would be used to address them.  This could be a way to practice debate skills.

In other, you may have to read on ancient texts.  Instead use the historical issues raised in their social studies class as basis for considering current issues - literally or metaphorically.

Another idea is to look at the art of ancient river civilizations and invite students to "view" it and write poems that reveal students response to the art.

Oh yes, HUMAN    I     TIES.  Each of us - the "I" is tied to humans past and present.

Just a few ideas from the way our middle school teachers taught humanities.



Comment by John Isaacson on August 23, 2013 at 2:00am

Hello there!

I am teaching a Language Arts / Social Studies humanities blend class for sixth graders and our district's curriculum requires that we focus on Ancient River Civilizations. Does anybody have any ideas for readings other than Gilgamesh? Not like ancient river civilizations had a ton of literature, but any suggestions are much appreciated!


Comment by Ryan Goble on June 13, 2012 at 12:48pm

Hi Kathy, Pam and everyone else - I've been out a few weeks as I was in the hospital for my final surgery so I haven't been doing as much moderation as I normally would do. Obviously, using the wall for discussion is awesome but it is even "awesomer" to post questions like the Misfits one above in the discussion forum as a crowdsource question (or even in the YA Lit group discussion forum) that way I can broadcast the question to the WHOLE ning AND it has a dedicated URL for "the next teacher" to find it in the future.  No biggie - just something to keep in mind! Wall discussion gets buried over time :(

Comment by Pam Goble on June 12, 2012 at 5:52pm

Will respond more later, Red Kayak is a tremendous read, too. Very engaging and the dilemma is upsetting.

Tangerine is another amazing book for boys.

Will respond more later.

Comment by Kathy Calhoun on June 12, 2012 at 4:31pm

Pam, What do you think about using it with a group of 13-14 year old reluctant readers.  Many are on IEP's and most are below grade level readers. This will be my first year as an Intervention Specialist working with my own reading class. I was thinking about this book or the Red Kayak.  I want to find something engaging and interesting for them to read.  My guess is it will be predominately boys. Someone suggested Uglies, but so far it doesn't hold my interest.

Comment by Pam Goble on June 12, 2012 at 10:22am

People think it is an easy book to work with; it is not.  It is much deeper than its Seinfeld set of characters. Its complexity is what makes it a great book.  The setting is also of interest to my grad students.


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