Middle school ‘houses’ dye shirts, learn team skills
Sept. 21, 2017 -- Moravia Middle School seventh-graders became dyed-in-the-wool members of their “houses” earlier this month when they joined Principal Bruce MacBain in tie-dying T-shirts in their respective house colors. Then they took their new shirts out for a test drive Sept. 15 at Casawasco Camp & Retreat Center, where they worked on team-building skills.
The “house” concept steals a page from J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter books, in which students are sorted into four houses. The houses then compete throughout the school year to earn points and win the “house cup” in June. Moravia Middle School seventh and eighth grades each have five houses, and sixth grade has three.
“Students are awarded house points throughout the year if they do something extraordinary in class, make a connection between two subjects, do a positive behavior act, etc.,” Mr. MacBain said.
The entire middle school meets in the auditorium before school each day for announcements and celebrations, and the students sit according to their houses. Students then meet again with their house leaders at day’s end.
“The house leader is expected to know those 15 students better than anyone, so they are the first contact to parents,” Mr. MacBain explained. “No matter what the communication is (even if it is an issue from another class), the house leader will be the one calling home."