The celebration was created in 1997 by the National Middle School Association in collaboration with 31 other national educational, youth, and health organizations. Today, 39 groups are collaborating on Month of the Young Adolescent.
"The period of early adolescence is the second most important time in a person's development and the best chance to shape a person's future," states Sue Swaim, NMSA's executive director. "It's essential that all of us- educators, parents, family members, the business community-help young adolescents succeed academically while meeting their social needs."
Unfortunately the English language contains no single word for this life stage, having only the terms infancy, childhood, adolescence, and adulthood to designate periods of life. Yet, it is during the period of early adolescence, generally between the ages of 10 and 15, when young people leave childhood and move toward full adolescence that they make major decisions about their values, standards, attitudes, and personal beliefs. Many of these decisions direct their behavior throughout their lives.
Month of the Young Adolescent was created to bring about greater awareness of four key concepts that will help young adolescents reach their potential:
1. The importance of parents being knowledgeable about young adolescents and being actively involved in their lives. 2. The understanding that healthy bodies plus healthy minds equal healthy young adolescents. 3. The realization that the education young adolescents experience during this formative period of life will, in large measure, determine the future for all citizens. 4. The knowledge that every young adolescent should have the opportunity to pursue his or her dreams and aspirations, and post-secondary education should be a possibility for all.
Russellville Middle School will host a number of events during October to draw attention to the importance of this age group, Sherry Cayce, RMS principal announced. "Our community has an impressive record of supporting education. It's essential, however, that all of us look at how we can develop even more support for this important age group. Helping young adolescents is an investment in our community."
Among activities at Russellville Middle School in celebration of the Month of the Young Adolescent, will be:
"Shadow a middle-schooler" day, when business leaders can shadow students and see firsthand what happens in the classroom. Shadowing day will be held on October 30, from 8-10 AM, with a debriefing at 10 AM for both groups.
Parent workshop on how to give writing portfolio support to middle-schoolers, scheduled for 1:30 and 5:30 PM on October 24. The 5:30 workshop will be called, "Pizza, Parents, and Portfolios", pizza will be served!
Parents share a "Breakfast Boost!" with their child during National School Lunch Week October 14-18. Tuesday, October 17 is for parents of 7th graders; and Friday, October 18 is for parents of 8th graders.
PTO sponsored school dance, on October 3, from 7-10 PM, to give middle school students a chance to socialize in a safe, supervised environment.
PTO sponsored "Pumpkin Pupils on Parade", on October 31. This event is in conjunction with Main Street's "Boo Around Town". Each students will be asked to bring a carved pumpkin (jack o' lantern) to school on October 31, between the hours of 4-5 PM. The jack o' lanterns will line the street of the school.
"A Look to the Future-2022" dress up day, to promote career awareness, on October 31. Students will come to school attired in an outfit which represents how they think they will look 20 years from now.