When children start a new school, having an older student to talk this over with and to offer them first hand advice is invaluable. Unfortunately, it takes a little more work than just 'buddying up' an older student with a younger one. Here us a downloadable resource to help implement your own program. Once the initial work is done, you are set for many years. Your new pupils will be very grateful (and the older ones might just benefit too).
This in depth article provides evidence and research on how pupils best transition. It outlines transition as a multidimensional process, involving social and academic factors. The key here is that it is a process, not just something to provide in the initial few weeks at a new school. Chapter seven onwards offers fantastic ideas to implement in your own school and how to work with feeder schools to make the transition process smooth.
It's easy to support your students through change when you know them. However, this can take time. Time in which many students will need your support more than ever. Use these activities to quickly establish a connection with pupils and recognize their strengths and weaknesses and it will help you predict where they will need to the most support.
The idea here is that children who believe that intelligence levels can change will find the middle years transition easier and that it can often be the brighter students suffering the most. With tips on how to prepare students before they leave elementary school, as well as advice for parents, it's a useful tool to use when preparing a parent information evening.
This article from the European Journal of Psychology of Education gives a fascinating insight into how confidence rises and falls along with motivation to achieve academically when children transition through the middle years. What's important to note is the difference between boys and girls, giving you an understanding of how some pupils end up feeling left behind.
The middle school years can often be difficult for students and as teachers we owe it to them to help them out. This article offers valuable insight, but the best part is the 'tips' at the end - many creative ways to make the transition period comfortable for all.