Best Ways to Help Your Child Transition to Middle School

The transition from grade school to middle school can be exciting, but it can also be stressful and scary. Help your child manage the transition with confidence using our top 10 tips to prepare your child for middle school.

Visit the New Middle School

Visit your child’s new middle school once or twice before school starts to help them navigate the grounds and building. Have them locate the hallways where their classes will be held as well as the bathrooms.

Review the Middle School Website

Review the middle school’s website with your child, or if they want to do this independently give them six things to find on the website.

Create an Infinite Campus Account

Create an Infinite Campus account or an account with whatever your school district uses to track school information. Infinite Campus (IC) enables you and your student to keep track of things like assignments, grades, and attendance.

I recommend students check IC at least twice a week.

Get to Know School Staff

Make a point of getting to know the front desk staff, school counselor, and principal. Identify a few staff members your child can reach out to if they need help or a safe haven.

Keep School Supplies Simple

Some middle schools recommend different binders, homework folders, and notebooks for each class. Requiring students to keep track of 18 to 21 items each school day is a recipe for disaster!

Keep systems simple. Check out our top school supply picks to create a manageable, unified system that students can use to organize their workload and perform well in classes!

Practice Using a Combination Lock

Get a PE lock and have your child practice the combination. Be sure to keep a copy of your child’s locker number and combination at home.

If your child has difficulty using standard combination locks, check out Word Lock.

Establish a Nighttime & Morning Routine

Have your child get into a regular sleep schedule and morning routine during the week or two leading up to middle school. This will normalize school morning activities to get your child into the healthy habit of being rested and ready for school. Include some night before preparation to minimize morning stress and chaos.

Rehearse the Route to School

Practice the start of the school day in advance, including the walk, bike ride, or bus route to your child’s new school, timing how long it takes.

Notify Teachers About Accommodations

If your child is on a 504 or IEP, send or email a brief letter about your child to each of his or her teachers. State what your child needs to succeed in class. Also, place a copy of your child’s 504 accommodations in a sleeve in their school binder.

Start Using a Family Calendar

Set up a family calendar for all family members’ events so that everyone is aware of each person’s schedule.

Have your child record his or her extracurricular activities in their academic planner. This will help your child see when they have time to get their homework done and create ownership for both school and extracurricular activities

About Skills 4 Life:

Skills 4 Life Pediatric Occupational Therapy offers a broad range of pediatric occupational therapy services to help your child master age-appropriate developmental skills, become more independent, increase academic success & develop confidence. The experts at Skills 4 Life specialize in handwriting, keyboarding & executive function coaching, but also work with children on social & emotional learning, motor skills, self-regulation strategies & activities of daily living. Skills 4 Life Pediatric Occupational Therapy offers your child a safe, compassionate environment to learn the critical skills they need to be successful. Learn more about our team & services at, or you can contact our office by email at or by phone at 303.351.1828 for a free consultation.

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