Meet Our Middle School Faculty

Brandi Sanchez

Math Teacher

bsanchez@ast.tc.edu.tw

Kendra Hansen

Science Teacher

khansen@ast.tc.edu.tw

Benjamin Kenan

English and Social Studies Teacher

bkenan@ast.tc.edu.tw

Tim Michael

Teacher / Middle School Coordinator

tmichael@ast.tc.edu.tw

Katie Leahy

English and Drama Teacher / TASMUN Director

kleahy@ast.tc.edu.tw

Joan Freeman

Language Arts Teacher

jfreeman@ast.tc.edu.tw

Greta Macha-Sharp

ESOL Teacher / Reading Specialist

gmsharp@ast.tc.edu.tw

Jeffrey Yacuk

ESOL Teacher / Athletics Director

jyacuk@ast.tc.edu.tw

Yao-Wei Chang

Chinese Teacher

ychang@ast.tc.edu.tw

Charlene Chen

Chinese / ESOL Teacher

cchen@ast.tc.edu.tw

Michael Wiles

Music and Performing Arts Teacher

mwiles@ast.tc.edu.tw

Derek Kensinger

PE Teacher / Activities Coordinator

dkensinger@ast.tc.edu.tw

Elizabeth Norton-Middaugh

Nutrition, Psychology, Comp Sci Teacher

bnorton@ast.tc.edu.tw

This is an exerpt from a full article on KidsHealth.org.

10 Ways to Help Your Child Succeed in Middle School

Parental support plays a crucial role in helping preteens and teens succeed in middle school. But as students grow more independent during these years, it can be challenging for parents to know which situations call for involvement and which ones call for a more behind-the-scenes approach.Here are 10 ways to keep your child on track for academic success in middle school.

  1. Attend Back-to-School Night and Parent-Teacher Conferences

  2. Visit the School and Its Website

  3. Support Homework Expectations

  4. Send Your Child to School Ready to Learn

  5. Instill Organization Skills

  6. Teach Study Skills

  7. Know the Disciplinary and Bullying Policies

  8. Get Involved

  9. Take Attendance Seriously

  10. Make Time to Talk About School

© 1995- 2016 . The Nemours Foundation/KidsHealth®. Reprinted with permission.

You are invited to join us for ...

Sixth grade students presented a power-point program to parents, students and teachers as a culminating activity for their “Storybirds” writing project. Students greeted guests as they arrived, welcomed them in the formal portion of the program, introduced the project, and completely ran the event by themselves.

Every student had a speaking part to share and explain about the process the class went through to design and write their books, using the website “Storybirds.” They explained about the initial study done to learn about all the necessary elements for this project, and then explained about the plot stages, and the writing process used in the classroom and computer labs to create and complete their individual picture story books.

After the formal presentation, students broke into different reading stations where parents and students joined them in small groups to see the individual books, and hear the stories read. Guests were able to join several groups to see and hear a variety of stories. Delicious cookie treats were created and provided by the middle and high school cooking classes.

Harris Burdick is an exciting narrative writing project. Students will explore the structure and key elements of a story in preparation for writing their own mystery novel. Collaborative workshops will help pupils develop creative ideas and also provide opportunities to practice valuable writing skills. Parents will be invited to attend the Harris Burdick presentation day where pupils will showcase their stories. 

In Earth Science students study plate tectonics, plate boundaries, and earthquakes. The earthquake building project is an opportunity for them to apply this learning to a hands on engineering project. In preparation for the project students visited the 921 Earthquake museum and learned about the devastation caused to buildings and the people residing in them. They then studied engineering methods to make a building safer. With this knowledge in hand, students built a model building designed to withstand a 7.0+ magnitude earthquake. They also wrote paragraphs and designed a poster to promote their building. When the projects were complete parents, teachers, and other students were invited to view the buildings and witness the shake test. Each building was attached to a shake table and subjected to a 20 second earthquake.

The 8th Grade class hosts an annual U.S. History Symposium, open to parents, upper Elementary, MS students, HS students, and teachers. The symposium may be presented using any number of methods. The first symposium consisted of multimedia presentations that described and analyzed pivotal events and periods in U.S. History, such as key battles of World War II, the immigrant experience in the United States, and the Westward Expansion of the 19th century. Through this symposium, students are given the opportunity to sharpen their research and analytical skills to create in-depth understanding of history and how our modern world is affected by the past.  Parents get to see their children's skills in action.

The Roller Coaster Competition is one of the many fun and challenging projects the 8th grade class has to participate in science. Students choose their own teams and each team decides on the name and design and the materials to be used on the roller coaster. The students then construct their coasters from scratch and write an advertisement for their work. They have to identify potential and kinetic energies on different parts of the roller coaster and calculate the work and power done by the marbles. The whole school is invited to vote for the coaster with the best name/theme and decoration, and the most thrilled ride.

School Supply List

Binders, Notebooks, and Paper

  • A4 size 3 ring binders (4 for Math, Science, Social Studies, Language Arts; each binder must be 3.5 CM thick)
  • Dividers for each binder
  • A4 size loose leaf lined paper
  • A4 size graph paper
  • A4 size spiral notebook with lined paper, approx. 75 pages (1 for Language Arts)
  • Lined note cards 8cm x 13cm (1 pack for Language Arts)

Tools

  • Pencils & erasers
  • Colored pencils
  • Pens
  • Blue or black
  • Red
  • Highlighters (3 colors)
  • Ruler
  • Scissors
  • Glue stick
  • Calculator (should include square root function)
  • Hand-held pencil sharpener with shavings cover
  • 3-hole punch - can be kept at home

Books

  • At least one book to read for silent reading (SSR) which must be left at school or brought to school every day.

Our Curriculum Website

Please check out our curriculum website. On the site you will find: