2024 8th Grade Forum

34th Edition of the Carlisle Middle School 8th Grade Forum Celebrates Tradition of Academic Excellence

CarlisleSchoolForumPhotoThe Carlisle Middle School proudly announces the successful completion of its 34th annual 8th Grade Forum, a cherished tradition that marks a significant milestone in the academic journey of its students. The three-day event took place from Wednesday, March 6, to Friday, March 8. Forum, initiated in 1990 by Mrs. Linda Gibson in collaboration with the late Mrs. Peggy Ford, has become a rite of passage for eighth-grade students, fostering critical thinking, research skills, and public speaking abilities.

The Carlisle 8th Grade Forum is designed to provide students with a platform to engage in formal research on important contemporary and historical topics. Through this initiative, students are empowered to develop critical reading and writing skills, analyze historical events, and explore various viewpoints. Coordinated by the school’s History and English departments, Forum encourages students to delve into primary and secondary sources, as well as contemporary media, to craft well-rounded perspectives on their chosen topics.

This year’s Forum showcased a diverse array of topics, ranging from the societal impact of social media platform TikTok to the ethical considerations surrounding the use of drones in law enforcement and the complex issue of homelessness in our communities. Additionally, students also explored whether AI-generated art qualifies as authentic artistic expression and whether the use of AI medicine is here to stay.

Forum 2024

“The 8th Grade Forum is an integral part of our curriculum, providing students with the opportunity to engage deeply with complex issues and refine their research and presentation skills,” said Beth Gammons, Assistant Head of School. 

Throughout the Forum process, students undergo a rigorous multi-draft research paper journey, culminating in concise and compelling oral presentations. The culmination of their efforts is a testament to their growth as scholars and critical thinkers.

Linda Gibson says, “Forum is not just an eighth grade project or a “rite of passage.” It is a culmination of the reading and critical thinking skills that Carlisle Middle School teaches all three years. It is a vehicle we use to have students practice ideas and methods that they will use in high school, college, and the rest of their lives. Students succeed in the Forum as they learn ways to investigate questions and reach conclusions, organize their thoughts, and communicate their findings in writing and in speech.”

The Carlisle Middle School extends its gratitude to the teachers, parents, panelists, and community members who supported the 8th Grade Forum, contributing to its continued success and impact on student learning.