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Middle school students are at times very independent and organized, and, at other times, they are very disorganized and in need of support from the adults in their lives.  As I walked in classrooms today, I was taken with the number of ways our talented teachers have created visual assists to help our students on the days when they need it most.

Talk Moves:  Talk Moves help students understand how a conversation or discussion can move along.  It also gives a way for them to agree with their peers without just repeating what their peer said.
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Test Taking Tips:  Effective study strategies is something that students need to learn, especially as the work load and complexity of material increases from middle school through high school.  Here are a few ways one 6th grade class are practicing good test taking skills.
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Agendas and Content Standards:  Students can expect teachers to have the daily agenda on the board.  This helps them understand the order of events, as well as the overall purpose of the lesson.

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Graphic Organizers:  A graphic organizer can help students chunk information into relevant sections.  They also help students organize information as they are collecting and/or creating it.  This sample from a science classroom is also highlighting key vocabulary used in a scientific experiment.

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Sentence Stems:  Sometimes students aren’t sure how to get started … whether it’s with their own writing, or when giving other’s feedback.  Sentence stems provide a model helps students organize their thoughts and ideas.

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