Yearbook! Yearbook! Yearbook!

2017-2018 yearbooks are now on sale. The cost is $40.00 until December 22nd.  After December 22nd the cost will be $45.00.  Order forms are located in the office or you can purchase a yearbook online at Our school code is 8502018.

Taking Standardized Tests

Test Taking Tips

Helping Middle School Students Cope

Helping your Adolescent Succeed

Are you a Good Reader?

Thinking Strategies used by Proficient Learners

Helping your child with homework

Helping Your Child

Listed below are several articles that may help you understand and assist your child in being more successful.

Below are links to brief publications in pdf format that can be viewed, downloaded and/or printed that provide valuable tips and information to help your child be more successful.

Helping Your Student Succeed

Test Taking Tips and Strategies

Tips for Helping with Homework

Helping your Child with Homework

Make Sure Your Child Has…

  • A quiet place to work with good light.
  • A regular time each day for doing homework
  • Basic supplies, such as paper, pencils, pens, markers, and a ruler
  • Aids to good organization, such as student agenda, book bag, and folders

Questions to Ask Your Child

  • What was your assignment today?
  • Is the assignment clear? (If not, suggest calling the school’s homework hotline or a classmate.)
  • When is it due?
  • Do you need special resources ( like a trip to the library or access to a computer)?
  • Do you need special supplies (like graph paper, or posterboard)?
  • Have you started today’s assignment? Finished it?
  • Is it a long-term assignment (like a term paper or science project)?
  • For a major project, would it help to write our the steps or make a schedule?
  • Would a practice test help?

Other Ways to Help

  • Look over your child’s homework, but don’t do the work!
  • Meet the teachers early in the year and find our about homework policy.
  • Review comments on returned homework and discuss them with your child.
  • Contact the teacher if there’s a homework problem or need you can’t resolve.
  • Congratulate your child on a job well done.

(Source: U.S. Department of Education - Office of Reform Assistance and Dissemination)

Thinking Strategies Used by Proficient Learners

Determining What Is Important In Text

  • Readers and Researchers
    • Readers and researchers identify key terms or themes as they read.
    • Readers and researchers use text structure and text features (such as bold, color or italicized print, figures and photographs) to help them tell the difference between important and unimportant information.
  • Writers
    • Writers make decisions about the most important ideas to include in the pieces they write.
    • Writers provide only essential detail to reveal the meaning and produce the effect desired.
  • Mathematicians
    • Mathematicians look for patterns and relationships.
    • Mathematicians decide what information is relevant to a problem and what information is irrelevant.

Drawing Inferences

  • Readers and Researchers
    • Readers and researchers make predictions or hypothesize about text, confirm their predictions and test their developing understanding as they read on.
    • Readers and researchers create interpretations to enrich and deepen their experience of a text.
    • Researchers interpret the results of their research to draw conclusions.
  • Writers
    • Writers carefully consider their audience in making decisions about what to describe explicitly and what to leave to the reader’s interpretation.
  • Mathematicians
    • Mathematicians predict, generalize and estimate
    • Mathematicians compose (like a writer) by drawing pictures, using charts, and creating equations.

Using Prior Knowledge (schema)

  • Readers and Researchers
    • Readers and researchers automatically use relevant, prior knowledge before, during and after reading text.
    • Readers and researchers use schema to connect texts to their world knowledge, and personal experience.
  • Writers
    • A writer’s content comes from and builds on his/her experiences.
    • Writers think about and use what they know about genre, text structure, and conventions as they write.
  • Mathematicians
    • Mathematicians use current understandings as first steps in the problem solving process.
    • Mathematicians use their prior knowledge to generalize about similar problems and to choose problem solving strategies.

Monitoring Meaning and Comprehension

  • Readers and Researchers
    • Readers and researchers monitor their comprehension during reading - they know when the text makes sense, when it does not, what does not make sense, and whether unclear portions are critical to overall understanding of the piece.
    • Readers and researchers must learn to pause, consider the meanings in text, reflect on their understandings, and use different strategies to enhance their understanding.
  • Writers
    • Writers monitor during their composition process to ensure that their text makes sense for their intended audience at the word, sentence and text level.
    • Writers read their work aloud to find and hear their voice.
    • Writers share their work so others can help them monitor the clarity and impact of the work.
  • Mathematicians
    • Mathematicians check to make sure answers are reasonable.
    • Mathematicians continually ask themselves if each step makes sense.
    • Mathematicians discuss problems with others and write about their problem solving process to clarify their thinking and make problems clearer.

Asking Questions

  • Readers and Researchers
    • Readers and researchers ask questions before, during and after reading.
  • Writers
    • Writers monitor their progress by asking questions about their choices as they write.
  • Mathematicians
    • Mathematicians ask questions before, during and after doing a math problem.

Fix Up Strategies

  • Readers and Researchers
    • Readers and researchers ask themselves these questions when not comprehending: Does this make sense?; Does the word I’m pronouncing sound like language?; Do the letters in the word match the sounds I’m pronouncing?; Have I seen this word or parts of it before?; Is there another reader who can help me make sense of this?; What do I already know from my experience and the context of this text to help me solve this problem?
  • Writers
    • Writers revise and edit continually to improve clarity for the reader.
    • They experiment with and make changes in overall ideas and content, word choice, organization and conventions.
  • Mathematicians
    • Mathematicians listen to others’ strategies and adjust their own.
    • Mathematicians use tools (i.e. manipulatives, graphs, calculators, etc.) to enhance meaning.


Synthesizing Information

  • Readers and Researchers
    • Readers and researchers retell or synthesize what they have read. They attend to the most important information.
    • Readers capitalize on opportunities to share, recommend and criticize books they have read.
  • Writers
    • Writers make plans for their writing before and during the drafting process.
    • Writers study other writers and draw conclusions about what makes good writing. They work to replicate the style of authors they find compelling.
  • Mathematicians
    • Mathematicians generalize from patterns they observe.
    • Mathematicians generalize in words, equations, charts and graphs to retell or synthesize.

Using Sensory Images

  • Readers and Researchers
    • Readers create sensory images during and after reading. These images may include visual, auditory and other sensory as well as emotional connections to the text and are rooted in prior knowledge.
    • Readers and researchers use images to draw conclusions and to create unique interpretations of the text.
  • Writers
    • Writers consciously attempt to create strong images in their compositions using strategically placed details.
    • Writers create impact through the use of strong nouns and verbs whenever possible.
  • Mathematicians
    • Mathematicians visually represent thinking through drawings, pictures, graphs and charts.
    • Mathematicians visualize concepts in their heads (i.e. parallel lines, fractions, etc.)

Are you a Good Reader?

readerIs your child a good reader? Does your child use the strategies that good readers use to make sense of what they read?

Work with your child in using the chart below. Learning to ask questions before, while, and after reading helps to improve reading comprehension. Practice asking questions, making predictions, and summarizing what’s been read.  Make reading a family affair!
Good Reader

Helping Your Adolescent Suceed

15 Ways to Help Your Adolescent Succeed Better in School

1. Providing a consistent sleep schedule. (Young adolescents need eight hours of sleep.)

2. Providing a well balanced diet.

3. Establishing a schedule that permits ample time to get ready for school and results in a timely school arrival.

4. Encouraging him/her to set aside time for daily homework and reading.

5. Providing a quiet, comfortable place without distractions to study.

6. Encouraging him/her to make wise television viewing choices.

7. Asking in a variety of ways about daily homework assignments.

8. Comparing your child’s progress to his or her abilities, not to siblings or other children.

9. Praising your child when homework/responsibilities are completed.

10. Creating a homework Survival Kit. Assignment notebook, pencil, paper, pencil sharpener, eraser, scissors, dictionary, calculator, and ruler.

11. Telling your young adolescent you expect him/her to do homework independently, but you are available if help is needed.

12. Providing transportation to the library or other resource areas when assignments require reference materials.

13. Providing a place where completed work can be stored safely (a folder, a shelf, or a drawer).

14. Discussing homework assignments and providing hints when necessary.

15. Becoming actively involved in homework when teachers have requested family/student interaction.

(Source: Keys to Reengaging Families in the Education of Young Adolescents, NMSA)

Helping Middle Schools Students Cope

Middle Schoolers are Frequently Forgetful

One day your preteen locks herself out of the house. The next day she leaves her homework at home. What’s going on? According to memory researcher Charles Brainerd, it’s natural for children this age to be forgetful. With all their responsibilities—such as homework, activities and chores - it’s hard to remember everything.

These ideas may help:

  • Use visual cues - including notes and "to-do" lists. they creative reminders, such as a flower on your child’s desk to reminder her to water the garden.
  • Assign only one new responsibility at a time. Show you child how to do it and give clear, step-by-step instructions.
  • Talk about responsibilities ahead of time. On Sundays you might discuss plans for the week. At dinner, review the next day’s schedule.
  • Establish routines that turn chores and other duties into habits. For example, you child might make her bed before breakfast every morning.
  • Teach memory tricks, such as the rhyme "Thirty days hath September." Kids enjoy learning these simple aids.
  • Let you child see the results of her actions. She may get an "F" for leaving homework at home, but she’s more likely to remember it next time.

(Source: Pam Carroll, "Preteen Space Cadets," Parenting)

Planning Prevents Procrastination

Does your child put off big projects until the last minute? If so, he may not know how to plan ahead. teach him this skill with these guidelines:

    • Set expectations. Tell your child that projects must be done over time - not right before they are due.
    • Make a planning sheet. leave spaces for the assignment’s title, necessary supplies and steps that need to be completed. Choose a due date for each step.
    • Monitor Progress. check to make sure you child is meeting his deadlines. With practice, he’ll need less supervision.

    (Source: Lee Canter and Lee Hausner. Homework without Tears, Harper & Row Publishers)

    Taking Standardized Tests

    Taking Standardized Tests like the STAR Tests and the district benchmark tests can be a stressful experience for students.  In order to reduce anxiety and better prepare for these type of tests, follow these simple tips:

    Here are some things your child can do:

    Get a good night’s sleep before taking any standardized tests.

    A good breakfast on the morning of the test is important. Activities such as those on standardized tests use a lot of energy.

    Listen carefully to the directions the teacher gives and follow them exactly. If you don’t understand what to do, ask the teacher to repeat the directions or to explain them again.

    Do your best. You are not expected to know the answer to every question. Some of the questions may seem hard, but keep trying and don’t give up.

    Here are some things the parent can do:

    Help your child understand that Standardized Tests provide a chance to show what a student knows about a subject and how the teacher can best help the student to learn.

    Make sure your child understands that the test scores simply give information about the student’s knowledge and skill level.

    See that your child keeps up regular study habits, but don’t ask for extra study time. These tests cover more schoolwork than can be learned in a few extra hours.

    Reassure your child about the test-taking experience. Students who are calm and sure of themselves do better.

    Test Taking Tips

    There are three (3) steps you must do well in order to get the best grade possible on each test you take. They are:

    1. Preparation
    2. Review
    3. Execution (actually taking the test)


    • Listen in class - Remember, 99% of all questions on every test will be covered in class before the test.
    • Ask questions in class - You will remember things better if you are part of the class discussion. Also, from your questions, a teacher may get an idea about what material should be on the actual test.
    • Take notes - Notes are a way to make a record of the things you think are important. It takes practice to become good at taking notes.
    • Draw pictures - Drawing a picture, a diagram, a graph or a table makes it much easier to remember facts.

    The night before the test:

    • Collect all the information you have that you think might be on the test.
    • Organize the information in a way that makes sense to you. For example:
    • history or social studies information can be chronologically organized
    • math problems can be organized according to difficulty
    • science information can be compared and contrasted
  • Review one thing at a time and take your time.
  • Do not try to review everything at once.
  • Don’t watch TV or go out to play after you finish studying - get a good night’s sleep instead - you will remember more the next day.
  • Do a quick review right before the test.

  • Be confident about what you know.

  • Execution (actually taking the test)

    • Have all the materials you need to take the test and be ready to go.
    • Read every question carefully and any information with it before you write your answer.
    • Go completely through the entire test one time, doing your best to answer each question.
    • Put a mark next to the questions you are not 100% sure of.
    • After you have gone through the test the first time, go back over the questions you marked and work on them until the test is over.
    • You may find clues in one part of the test that will help you answer questions in another part of the test.
    • Hand in your paper only after you think you have done the best job possible.

    Infinite Campus Login Problems

    Infinite campus

    Having problems logging into the Infinite Campus Portal?

    Once you are on the Infinite Campus Portal web page, parents and students who forget their Portal log-in or password can click on “Problems logging in?”, type in their email address, and they will be sent an email with their login information.
    • Users must have a current email address
    • If an email address is used for more than one person in IC this feature will not work.

    NOTE: Students and parents are encouraged to make sure that their information, including email address, is correct in IC.


    2017-2018 Parent Link

    John Muir Middle School Administration communicates with our families via email / phone call on a weekly basis.  You should receive an email / weekly phone call (usually on Saturday).  If you are not receiving the emails / phone calls, contact the school to make sure we have your current information in the system.  To see the latest message that was sent out to our families via email / phone call, press on the date below:

    August 19, 2017
    August 16, 2017
    August 14, 2017

    School Fundraising

    John Muir has several ongoing fundraisers that the Muir community is encouraged to participate in. Click the links below to access the online fundraisers.  Scroll down to learn more about each one.


    escripteScrip is proven to be a fantastic resource for fundraising where participating business partners contribute a percentage of your grocery loyalty cards, credit card, and debit/ATM card purchases to the school of your choice.
    Here’s How it Works:
    • You register any one or all of your existing grocery loyalty, debit and credit cards for use in the program.
    • Participating merchants will make contributions to your chosen school, based on purchases made by you, just by using the cards you have registered.
    • Your purchases are tracked and available to you online, allowing you to see just how much you are earning on your child’s behalf!

    Boxtops for Education


    It’s time to gather up all those Box Tops you and your family and friends have been saving, and send them off to your school. Help your coordinator by bundling Box Tops in groups of 10, 25, or 50 and place in labeled envelopes or small Ziploc® bags.
    IMPORTANT REMINDER!  When cutting the boxtops out, make sure that the expiration date is not cut off.  BoxTops without expiration dates on them will not be accepted for redemption.
    More information about this fundraiser program is coming.

    Great American Online

    great american

    This fundraiser, coordinated by the Muir Associated Student Body, allows you to access our online store.  For each online purchase you make, John Muir receives a percentage of your purchase.  It’s easy and only takes a few minutes!  Click on the icon to the left and help Muir earn money while you shop online!


    Welcome to the John Muir SELAC


    WHAT is John Muir SELAC?

    WHAT:  School English Learner Advisory Committee

    WHO: Parents of students who are English Learners or parents of students who have been reclassified less than three years ago

    WHEN:  SELAC Meetings are once a month on Wednesdays from 10:00 - 11:00 am in the Library.

    WHY:  SELAC gives important information about John Muir Middle School.
    • Gives parents the opportunity to make decisions about programs/activities at the school
    • Gives information on how to help your child in school
    • Provides guest speakers about various topics, including gangs, academics, study habits

    Parent Involvement is Important

    Decades of research have shown that when parents are involved, students have:
    • Higher grades
    • Higher test scores
    • Increased academic achievement
    • Better school attendance
    • Increased motivation and better self esteem
    • Lower rates of behavioral problems
    • Decreased use of drugs and alcohol

    Please become involved in your child’s education!

    Web Resources for Parents

    Here are several useful web sites to help parents and their children

    Websites to Help Parents Help their Children
    This site provides multiple links to pages (including Spanish) of a variety of topics aimed at helping parentshelp their children.  Also included are links especfially for kids.

    Homework Help:
    Part of the Family Education Web Site which covers several topics dealing with homework.

    Homework Center:
    Part of the web site, it provides tips on completing homework and a search engine to locate answers to homework questions.

    Raising Student Achievement
    This page, part of the PTA web site, gives ideas for helping to raise student achievement.

    Talking with Kids:
    This web site deals with how to discuss a variety of topics with your child.
    The parent community dedicated to children’s learning.

    Educational Resources for Parents:
    Published by the Department of Education, it provides links to resources on a variety of educational topics.

    Wired Safety
    This site is dedicated to providing information about online safety.  There are many articles of interest to parents regarding online safety.

    SJUSD Links

    Food Services
    Health Services


    Parent Resources

    Welcome to the Parent Resources Page!

    Included in this section are announcements of meetings and workshops for parents, web links to articles of interest for parents, and other pages containing information that you can use to help your child be more successful in school.

    SJUSD Advisory Committees

    Advisory Committees

    Family Engagement

    SJUSD Family Engagement

    Parent Process for Concerns

    SJUSD Parent Process for Concerns Link

    Student/Parent & Staff Handbook

    Click to access the SJUSD Student/Parent & Staff Handbook

    Parent Volunteer Information

    Click to access the Parent Volunteer Information

    Student Support Services

    There are a wide variety of student support services available to help your child be academically successful and well adjusted to middle school life.
    These resources are available at Muir, through SJUSD, and the city of San José.

    Welcome to the John Muir PTSA


    Please note when viewing the site from your mobile phone the view will not be in the same correct format that you will see on your desktop computers, iPads, nooks and/or tablets.  If you scroll to the bottom while on your mobile device you can select “View On Desktop” link. This will correct the view.