A Chance at Something New: TP Middle School Games


Hitting the sixth year mark now,  the TP Middle School Games allow middle schoolers to have a respite from the ever-so-busy school day for a chance to further connect with classmates while also being able to strengthen their soft skills. Not only this, but each year the games vary to take place every three years so students have a chance to participate in all three game categories, one for each year they are in middle school. 


These game categories include the pirate games, the global games, and most recently, the escape games. With each year though, the themes of the TP Middle School Games changes as the three teachers involved with the planning process of them, Kerri Grosso, Kimmy Sanford, and Laura Bridges-Pereira come up with new ideas. Putting these ideas into action is hard work as they must be planned well in advance.


“While I would say that the middle school pirate games have taken the least amount of planning, each game is very complex and takes over a year to plan,” Pereira said.


Each carefully planned game has been well thought out, but the students tend to lead towards one game over and over, leading to it also taking the least amount of planning.


“Students loved the private games and the escape games that were created, but they didn’t like the global games because I think they felt it was a little too academic,” Pereira said.


While also meant to be a respite from the busy academic schedules of middle school students, the middle school games consist of academic components while efficiently balancing them out with soft skills.


“The major emphasis of the games really is soft skills, things that students don’t get to work on as much in class, however, academic components are included with [activities such as] newspaper writing and quizzes based on grade-specific curriculum,” Pereira said.


And newspaper writing doesn’t only mean journalism, it’s also a way for students to be able to efficiently work on their communication skills as they report on what their group does throughout the day, and quizzes based on academic curriculum enable students to earn certain advantages in games.


No studying has to be done for the quizzes though because “if you’ve done well in your semester, the quizzes will be easier to answer which will help you gain advantages in the game,” Pereira said.


With the idea of the games being to help students feel so immersed and involved in something that they aren’t worried about other games, the TP Middle School Games can help make middle school not as stressful for students while also helping them develop the skills necessary for later in life. In high school, the number of stressed students continues to grow, and middle school games will fluctuate into high school games in the near future. As Ms. Pereira says, “Don’t worry high schoolers, one day, you too will have a chance to get the day off for games too!”