At the Heart of an Excellent Middle School
According to the Association for Middle Level Education (AMLE), developmentally appropriate middle schools group students into smaller units or teams as a way to personalize the learning environment. Each team is comprised of a teacher from each of the core disciplines - mathematics, science, social studies, and language arts. In addition, a learning support teacher is assigned to work with students who have identified needs. The team structure allows students and teachers to develop stable, close, respectful relationships. The team structure helps to build a sense of community and promotes curricular integration. Each team is comprised of a heterogeneous group of students, assigned at random, and all course offerings are generally available on all teams. Teams of teachers meet and plan together on a daily basis. In 6th grade, students are assigned to one of three teams: Explorers, Voyagers, or Blazers.
For more information on the teaming concept: