This is an exciting time of your life; a time of transition, of growing in maturity and in your learning. This information will help you feel informed and so more confident as you start your Middle School learning journey.


Teachers

These are the probable Year 7 teachers for 2021:

  • Mrs McGifford – English / Social Science / Maths / Science (together called ‘Home Room’)
  • Mrs Frost – Art / possibly P.E.
  • Mr Frost – P.E.
  • Technology: Hard materials - John van Mulbregt / Foods and fabric - Mrs Schaar  (two terms with each)
  • Mrs O’Carroll – DTG (Digital Technology)
  • Mrs Schaar – Health
  • Assorted teachers for Options

 Mrs Schaar, the Middle School Dean, oversees student well-being for these years and supports home-room teachers, students, and parents with resolving issues when this is needed.


The meaning of ‘M’     

M refers to Middle

  • M1 – Middle School Class One
  • M2 – Middle School Class Two
  • M3 – Middle School Class Three
  • M4 – Middle School Class Four

Middle School classes have Year 7-10 students. There is often more than one year level in a class, depending on numbers. You should check the class lists outside the office approximately a week before school starts.

We have three Senior School levels which are Years 11, 12, and 13. Students in these year groups are studying for the National Certificate in Educational Achievement (N.C.E.A.).


Periods spent at each subject (50 minute periods)

  • Homeroom – 15 periods (we always do maths for the first Homeroom period each day 4x a week and usually carry on through another period at least one of these times)
  • Science - 3
  • Art - 2
  • P.E. / House Sport – 2 P.E. and one House Sport last thing on Friday afternoon
  • D.T.G. / Health – 3
  • Technology – 2 (2 terms workshop tech, 1 term cooking, 1 term sewing)
  • Options – 2

Some of the ‘Options’ that you may get to choose from are: graphics, art, robotics, music, drama, languages, and boot camp. The options available depend on the staff available and their strengths.

We have attached a sample timetable that M1 students can expect to follow. Teacher initials are included for each class. Don’t worry, your teachers will help you and you will soon understand the timetable.


House time

Meet in your house room at 8.40 am (roll, uniform check, messages), always go back to your house room after lunch for roll check. Classes start at 8.50. Ruataniwha – Art-room, Pukaki – R18, Ōhau – R3.  Assembly is held every Monday, straight after house time in the foyer.


What to do with your things

You will have a locker in the hallway and a tray in your homeroom. You should take your P.E. gear home each weekend for washing. You are expected to keep your possessions tidy.


Devices

Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) was first implemented in 2021. Information about this has been in previous newsletters, more information can be found here: twizel.school.nz/our-school/byod. Year 7 students are requested, when possible, to BYOD.

You and your parents will be asked to sign a contract regarding responsible use of this device at school, and your use of the school email account you will be given.

A lot of the work done in the Middle School is done on Google Docs which can be accessed both at school and home.


Homework

Your homeroom teacher will give you a weekly homework task or tasks most weeks. Other teachers may also give you homework. It is up to you to manage your requirements in different subjects. A note from your adult is expected if you are unable to complete homework. Homework is an opportunity for you to consolidate your class learning, and for your adults to support your learning. Homework may be given on paper or through your Google Classroom.


Key Competencies

The Key Competencies remain very important. Perhaps they are even more so, as you become older and move towards the senior years and adulthood. The Key Competencies go across all areas of learning.

Relating to others
  • Interacting effectively
  • Teamwork
  • Sharing ideas and listening
  • Working co-operatively
  • Social roles and responsibility
Managing Self
  • Lifelong learning skills
  • Good planning skills and setting goals
  • Self-motivation
  • Being resourceful
  • Having an ‘I can do this’ attitude
  • Managing my own learning
Thinking
  • Develop your understanding
  • Thinking outside the square
  • Apply problem solving to real life situations
  • Explore ideas and question
  • Be enterprising
  • Make good decisions
  • Reflect and evaluate
Participating and Contributing
  • Being a good citizen.
  • Thinking about your community.
  • Learning through real life.
  • Life is more than just you.
  • Life means wider world.
  • Focus on planning for meaningful action.
Using Language, Symbols and Text
  • Using graphics, photos, power-points,
  • Speaking, discussing and listening
  • Communicating meaning
  • Texts, writing, poems, diaries, stories, reviews
  • Reading symbols, words, charts, signs

 

Previous Year 7 students say the best things about being in the Middle School are…
  • Technology
  • You get to move classes
  • More opportunities
  • Science when you do experiments
  • Digitech
  • You get to choose your option classes
  • P.E.
  • House sport – you get to choose between different sports
  • You get your own computer
  • Art
  • Camp


Advice from previous Year 7 students…
  • Keep your P.E. uniform in your locker (wash it at weekends).
  • Remember to come to school before house time to get organised.
  • Big kids are not people-eating monsters! Treat them with respect and they will treat you with respect.
  • Go to house time at the first bell in the morning (8.40)
  • The only jewellery you can wear is earrings.
  • If you have a uniform problem you need a ‘pink slip’ from your house teacher to show other teachers.
  • Don’t be a clown!
  • Do as you are told. Teachers are tougher on you in the middle school.
  • The lockers are only for your personal belongings, not for things like school balls.
  • Don’t be afraid to be one of the younger students in the senior school. It is an adventure.
  • Be yourself.
  • Enjoy being in the Middle School.