At Highland Middle School in Libertyville, IL a commitment to student achievement is shared by staff and students. True to the middle school philosophy, instructors collaborate to create and implement interdisciplinary units at all grade levels.
While all Highland curriculum has roots in critical thinking and problem-solving skills, interdisciplinary units called “Team Days” allow students to experience the District 70 commitment to the Applications of Learning (Communicating, Working on Teams, Self-Direction, Problem Solving, Using Technology and Making Connections) in a collaborative, literacy-informed manner.
The resulting connections between Team Day activities and the here and now are powerful. Highland “Team Days,” such as an 8th grade Holocaust unit or a 6th grade Brain Games unit have been cited in students’ graduation speeches and other end-of-the-year reflections. The school continues to investigate ways to implement more interdisciplinary opportunities to impact student learning and engagement.