Mark Dixon

Middle School Head at Montgomery School

Recent Posts

Smartphones and Middle Schoolers

Posted by Mark Dixon on Mar 9, 2018 2:43:31 PM

Smartphones . . . they have quickly become an unquestioned and pervasive extension of the countless new technologies that have changed our world exponentially over the past two decades. In a recent conversation with a Board member at my school, I appreciated his comparison of our age to that of the late 1800’s when American life changed forever with the introduction of electricity.  In his words, “Electricity touched everything; in the same way today, technology touches everything.” We are directly and constantly connected to information and to others, making many daily tasks and interactions easier. Truly, it is an exciting epoch in which to be alive; as an adult, it is an equally humbling charge to shepherd the next generation from childhood to adulthood in an age so vastly different than the one in which we were raised.

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Topics: Technology, middle school, teens, digital, smartphones

Goal Setting with Middle School Students

Posted by Mark Dixon on Jan 26, 2018 11:28:01 AM

I am grateful each January for the 365-page story that lies ahead, yet to be written.  Each one of us has the opportunity to refocus our vision for tomorrow and update our daily pursuits with that vision in mind. As adults, we have learned that all established goals require actionable steps and consistent (often daily or weekly) behaviors which eventually produce the end results we desire.  For all of us, setting goals seems to be the easy part; it is the calculated, consistent follow-through where we struggle.  

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The Middle School environment is critical: Where will you plant your seedling?

Posted by Mark Dixon on Aug 1, 2017 10:03:36 AM

Talk to me about your Middle School experience.  What do you remember?  In what significant ways did you grow as a Middle Schooler?

The general narrative proliferated by adults and popular media in the U.S. is that the Middle School years represent the worst and most challenging stage of human development.  Some hyperbolically reference the lingering post-traumatic stress they experience to this day when they call to mind their personal journeys through “the middle years.”  Others recall uncomfortable feelings of insecurity, compounded further by the cruelty of peers wrestling through their own struggles with confidence and self-image.

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Topics: middle school, elementary school, growth