6th Graders with ChickenAs the MPA community transitioned to distance learning, Dr. Jenn Milam, Middle School director, wanted a fun way to keep Middle School students and teachers connected and supported during the rest of the school year. Enter We-Connect Wednesdays!

“Wednesdays will be a time to connect individually with teachers for academic support, to gather in small groups with each other for projects and social time, meet with Dr. Nolan, school psychologist, or Ms. Cooper, school counselor, and offer enrichment and social opportunities for social and personal connection in fun ways,” wrote Dr. Milam in her message introducing the new plan to the students.

Every Wednesday for the past couple months, the Middle Schoolers have had a packed schedule full of optional events and discussions, following their morning student-teacher meetings. One of which, Lunch Bunch Fun, was for students to connect in multi-grade groups for conversation and fun. The Gender and Sexuality Alliance (GSA) met each week, led by Middle School Social Studies teacher Mr. Cunningham. There were also cooking classes hosted by MPA’s very own Chef Doug from SAGE Dining! The students could choose to read and discuss books in a book club hosted by Middle School Social Studies teachers Ms. Dale and Ms. Meras. Other events included Quiz Bowl challenges, theater games, Magic the Gathering meetings, learning the ins and outs of up-cycling, and the creation of the Mileage Club with MPA Physical Education teacher Ms. Powell. Some of the events remained the same each week, while others swapped out with more activities!

ms cooking class“Wednesdays was a chance for all of us to catch our breath and regroup for a strong Thursday and Friday,” says Dr. Milam. “In our every-other-day world in Middle School, we know that time to process, to reflect, to think, and rest is important. In a sense, this is the very same thing on a little bit bigger scale. It is my sincere hope that students (and families) will use this mid-week time to learn a little more deeply, do things they may not have time for during the regular school/workday, and connect to their own personal well-being.”

Click here to read more about Middle School at MPA.

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