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Why Choose Middle School?

Middle School Matters: The Middle School Specialization at TCNJ

Emma Brooke

My name is Emma Brooke and I am English Secondary Education major. I have always wanted to teach middle school because it is such an impressionable time in one’s life. Middle school is unique in that students are starting to find themselves and develop their own interests and favorite subjects to learn, and I want to be a part of that. The impact that my middle school teachers had on me I hope to have on my students one day. The Middle School Specialization Program is a wonderful addition to the TCNJ School of Education because it gives Secondary Education majors the opportunity to get extra insight on what it is like to teach middle school. A lot of secondary education majors choose not to teach middle school, so it’s important to educate those that want to and prepare them in the best way possible. As a founding member of CMLA, I hope to help prepare these future teachers, while preparing myself as well.


My name is Nicole Cammarota, I am a Secondary English Education Major. As a founding member of The College of New Jersey’s first CMLA Chapter, I believe that there should be more emphasis on Middle Level Education and the preparation of future middle school teachers. This age group truly needs great teachers and role models. I want to teach middle school because I believe it is the optimum time in a child’s life to instill the best educational and behavioral values. Students in middle school are impressionable – they need to learn the proper habits and demeanor to guide them throughout their academic futures. Often, the needs of these students are swept to the side, however this time period is a “make or break” period of life. I am passionate about instilling paramount ideals in my students, such as dedication, consistency, hard-work and academic integrity. Students in this age group need teachers with these qualities, teachers who want to show up and be there. Ultimately, that is why I am wholeheartedly invested in The College of New Jersey’s effort to improve the preparation of future middle school teachers.

Grace Deirocini

My name is Grace Deirocini, and I am a Secondary Education and English Major at The College of New Jersey, as well as a founding member of the College’s first CMLA chapter. While much emphasis seems to be placed on preparing to teach very young children or high school students, preparation for middle level educators seems to an area that is either glossed over or forgotten. Middle school students are at an age where each decision made becomes vital to who they are now and who they are going to become in the future. These students are beginning to formulate their own opinions and ideals, requiring guidance from a devoted group of educators. It is important that these students are provided with passionate and well-prepared role models in the classroom who are fully vested in guiding them to reach their fullest potentials. I am dedicated to ensuring that future middle school teachers coming from The College of New Jersey are receiving as much preparation as possible, ensuring that they have a positive impact on their students.