Research all NYC schools

Research Now

Academic Teams and Competitions Perfect for Middle School Students

January 18, 2021 Oliwia Caes

The advantages that come with involvement in extracurricular activities for middle school students are numerous. While one motivation for joining a club may be for high school applications, there are other reasons to consider joining one too. Academic clubs such as math teams, science teams, and Model UN can be a fun way to learn outside of the classroom and to learn important life skills. 

Math Team

The math team is a great option for all students, whether they want to feel more challenged in math or are looking for extra help. This team will strengthen your problem-solving abilities and most importantly, make math enjoyable. In math team, you can often expect to play games and engage in some friendly competition with your peers. This competition can drive you to stay motivated. Additionally, many math teams participate in annual math competitions where you compete with students your age from other schools. This provides you with an end goal that encourages you to challenge yourself in math. A sense of community is also felt as you and your teammates grow closer through working together. Two major competitions you can participate in are MATHCOUNTS and MoMathlon. Consider joining your school's math team! 

Science Clubs

Science clubs can give you access to more opportunities to perform experiments. In science class, time and resources can be limited but after school, you have the space to go above and beyond. Science fair is an optional competition that many schools offer that should be taken advantage of. In science fair projects, you have more freedom to work with topics that you are actually interested in. The science fair has many levels that also come with different rewards. For example, if you place in your school’s competition, you may earn a chance to present at the Natural History Museum! It is all the more fulfilling when you are talking about a subject that you have chosen and that you feel passionate about. 

Model UN

Model UN teams participate in debates where students simulate the United Nations and play the roles of delegates from the different countries. The topics discussed are real-world issues and the club exposes you to current events. At Model UN conferences, students are invited to debate with different schools and experience a little of what committees in actual debates between countries might be discussing and working through. 

In whatever subject you are interested in, there is most likely a club that can help you expand your knowledge of it whether that be in math, science, history, or other topics. This leads you to become a better student and may aid you in finding things that you actually love to learn about. Tournaments, debates, and fairs may also help inspire you to do your best. The abilities gained from joining academic clubs and engaging in competitions prepare you for success in the future. 

Oliwia Caes is a sophomore at Fiorello H. LaGuardia High School for Music, Art, and Performing Arts. She is a dance major, an editor of the school magazine, and spends her time reading mystery and science fiction.

Join to

Join today and have a high school mentor guide your child through their middle school years

Join Now

Other articles

  • img

    NYC High School Preparation Guide for Sixth Grade 2021

    • March 04, 2021
    • NYC Staff

    The transition from fifth grade to sixth grade is significant. For most students, this is the first time that they will be adjusting to a new school environment with new expectations regarding their work and learning. Though the start of middle school can be daunting for most families, this guide will show that there is nothing to be afraid of! By following these steps, families can make the most of the start to their child’s middle school career and begin preparing for the high school admissions process.

    Read More

  • img

    Public Schools With Sports Programs Around NYC

    • February 26, 2021
    • Maybelle Keyser-Butson

    Finding public high schools for athletes in New York City -- a city filled with academic high schools, performing arts high schools, and technical high schools, but very few athletic high schools -- is not as easy as it sounds. Finding an athletic public high school that also offers the academics that match your athletic child’s abilities can be even more difficult. Parents can spend hours clicking on slow-to-load high school ranking sites, only to find that the schools are not easily accessible from their home, or not academically rigorous enough, or not a public high school.

    Read More

  • img

    Virtual Auditions - New Guidelines for Applying to NYC Arts High Schools in 2021

    • February 10, 2021
    • Oliwia Caes

    Global pandemic or not, the time to apply to high schools has come. There is no need, however, to become intimidated by an online audition process. Truth be told, the fact that it is virtual allows you to present your best work from the comfort of your own home and hopefully gives you all the more reason to apply.

    Read More

  • img

    How to Write High School Admissions Essays

    • February 08, 2021
    • Jacob Brucker

    A key part of the high school admissions process is writing essays. For me, these essays were the chief part of the application and the thing I placed the most emphasis on. These essays would vary in length, question type, and style, but through my time applying to high school, I found there were three universal steps that helped my writing. I continue to use these three criteria in my normal essays and know they can help you write your high school essays for applications. Here are the three criteria I use for my essays.

    Read More