6th graders are a train wreck... still stuck in a cartoon world, they bring toys to school, and will drive you crazy. Set up a theme that encourages the jump to teenage years, don't keep them stuck in a world of smurfs. Challenge them, to look ahead, task them and you will see results.
You Should Do A Simpson Theme All Kids Like The Simpson
And You Should Give Out Candy Every Friday
Make it like a reality show. They love American Idol, So you Think you can Dance, etc. Make some kind of secret code so the students won't know who's work is who's. Make some kind of game and when they get an A or 100% or whatever they move on to the next round. Or whoever has the most A's at the end of month or period..whatever. Or make a little island where the games are and only the students who havne't been kicked off (they would get kicked off if they make a failing grade on a test/quiz, etc) only the passing grades earn time on the island during free time
Be consistent from day one. Follow through on your promises and your threats. If you do that, the themes won't matter. Best of luck!
The theme of education and how it affects the world.
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