What does school have to do with it? The students at our Baylen Middle School are going through puberty, and they have been mortified by psychological traumas that generations before them did not have to face. Thus, the overall behavior of many of our students needs to be structured in a way that they can quickly adapt to the "new world." As Oxley (1994) notes, today’s students may be even less able to cope with large schools due to the psychological, and social decline in urban poor communities. Because of this, small learning communities and charter schools have become the rage in the [[#|last]] decade. Students need a structured, technology based environment to get back focused on the goals of the 21st century. If not, the fate of our future will be at a loss. As a result of the recent changes in the environment, the teachers and administrators at our school have decided to implement the Common Core Curriculum in a blended, inquiry based, traditional classroom, and online curriculum with flexible classroom scheduling to help our students quickly become relevant our ever changing world.

We are using this model because Edelson, D., Gordin, D., & Pea, R. (1999) found that inquiry activities can contribute to the knowledge acquisition process by providing a meaningful context for learning. Therefore, the knowledge and skills that need to be acquired in our middle [[#|school]] are social skills, literacy, vocational skills, and problem solving in order to do this, we will use a blended learning model where the teachers will pre-assess all of the students, and use a results based Individual Learning Program that will help middle school students to be successful. We believe that “when [[#|assessment]] and instruction work together seamlessly and each informs the other, instructional time is maximized and assessment time minimized. (Teale, 2008).” In addition to that, we strongly believe that our curriculum ILP model will help us to identify developmental needs, natural abilities, and multiple intelligences.

As Salomen et, al noted, It is not the technology alone that affects learning but the whole system of correlated variables such as technology, activity, goals, setting, teachers role, classroom culture and the like which exerts combined effects and learning achievements (as cited in Hakkinen, P. (2002). With this in mind, we are highly emphasizing English and Social Studies being taught in a two hour block 4 days per week, and math and science being taught in a 2 hour block 4 days per week at the school location. On the fifth day, the students will use [[#|mobile devices]] to assess the [[#|school from home]] to test and [[#|apply]] what they learned per week to show mastery. The students will each have different tests that will adapt to their learning style and level of knowledge based off of their pre-test scores. In addition to this, the students will [[#|participate]] in one hour of physical exercise daily and one hour of social skills or vocational training depending on the student’s behavior. If the student is not a behavior problem, they can take 2 vocational classes of choice per week, and the classes will meet one hour every other day 4 days per week. Like the content [[#|classes]], the students will test at home on Friday to prove mastery of the standards. While the students are at home testing on Friday’s the teachers will virtually meeting, assessing data, and preparing lessons for Monday of the [[#|next]] week.

The curriculum, pedagogy, and [[#|programs]] of middle grades schools must be based upon the developmental readiness, needs, and interests of young adolescents. By using a career interest inventory, individual learning plan (ILP), and multiple intelligence test, our middle school will be well on the way in developing career awareness, exploration, and preparation for the new world in the 21Century. Not only will we have blended multi-subject curriculum blocks of ELA and Social Studies and Math and Science, various vocational choices, and social skills training, we will also use positive behavior support via to track student’s behavior so that we can link social skills to cognitive acquisition and standards mastery.


Edelson, D., Gordin, D., & Pea, R. (1999). Addressing the Challenges of Inquiry-Based Learning Through Technology and Curriculum Design. Journal of the Learning Sciences, 8(3), 391-450. doi: 10.1207/s15327809jls0803&4_3

Hakkinen, P. (2002). Challenges for design of computer-based learning environments. British Journal of Educational Technology, 33(4), 461-469. doi: 10.1111/1467-8535.00282

Soloman G et, al (1996) Learning in wonderland: what do computers really offer education? In Kerr S (ed) Technology and the future of education 1996 Yearbook of the NSSE Rand McNally, Chicago.

Teale, W. H. (2008). What Counts? Literacy Assessment in Urban Schools. The Reading Teacher, 62(4), 358-361. doi: 10.1598/RT.62.4.10

This We Believe: Keys to Educating Young Adolescents - Middle School Journal. (n.d.). This We Believe: Keys to Educating Young Adolescents - Middle School Journal. Retrieved March 26, 2013, from
File Not Found
File Not Found

Woltering, V., Herrier, A., Spitzer, K., & Spreckelsen, C. (2009). Blended learning positively affects students’ satisfaction and the role of the tutor in the problem-based learning process: Results of a mixed-method evaluation. Advances in Health Sciences Education, 14(5), 725-738. doi:10.1007/s10459-009-9154-6