“I see the goals of Touchstones as essential and prerequisite to the kinds of “anti-bullying” programs that are now so popular in schools. As such, I continuously reference our experiences with Touchstones when we work in our anti-bullying program.”
As their understanding of the world becomes more sophisticated, middle school students benefit from structure discussion in classes which they earn to respect and consider other viewpoints. Touchstones discussions provide an opportunity for students to explore ideas and take risks expressing their own ideas and reasoning in a safe environment. In doing so, students become more self-aware, gain confidence and efficacy, and develop skills needed to excel in a diverse and cooperative learning environment.
Students in Touchstones learn to work together and recognize that each voice brings valuable perspectives to the discussion. Furthermore, the interrelation of the text to themselves and society helps students see their own experiences as both relevant and meaningful in school. Touchstones Volumes A, B, and C, the middle school core volumes, each contain 30 lessons with primary source texts from classic work of literature, history, philosophy, the social sciences, mathematics, science, and fine art. Starting with the first lesson, students work toward goals that teach them to cooperate with each other, speak clearly, listen carefully, and assume greater responsibility for their own teaching and learning.