- 7th graders are puppies and 8th graders are cats – still adorable, but they can be moody & can scratch ya. Plus, cats will sometimes take swats at puppies.
- Adolescence is the process of changing your face from an oval to a triangle. O→∇
- Because adolescents are still developing the ability to perceive the points of view of others, it is axiomatic to them that no one can understand how they feel.
- There are two main reasons that middle school students believe that their grades are based entirely on how much their teachers like them. First, their ability to think abstractly is still under development, and grades being based on something other than the whim of the person giving out the grade is a level of abstraction that can be hard to grasp. Second, the role of teacher is based on the role of parent, and parents, like teachers, tend to dole out rewards and punishments. This works against the development of internal responsibility, reinforcing the impression that outcomes are completely dependent on external forces.
- Talking to 6th graders can require putting aside normal communication patterns and patiently speaking like the character Mojo Jojo from the Power Puff Girls animated TV series:
6th grader: Can I have one?
Me: I’m sorry, I gave the last one away
6th grader: But you gave one to her
Yes, I gave the last one to her, I have no more left.
6th grader: I want one.
Me: Yes, I understand you want one. I had one of them and that one I gave to away to her, leaving me with none. Zero is the number that I have now, with one being the number I had before I gave the last one away. I would give you one, but I don’t have any left since the last one, which I gave away, is no longer in my possession and now I have none of them left to give you.
6th grader: [pleading look]
Me: OK, I’ll see if I can find another one to give you.
For more on how children perceive other humans, click on this flower: