Warm, sunny days often bring an "illness" that's hard for middle graders to ignore.  What is it? Spring Fever!  Here are some ways to "cure" your middle grader and keep her focused on learning.

Stick to routines.  Make home life as predictable as possible by continuing the same routines that kept your household running through the winter months.  Example:  maintain the same bedtimes, and expect that chores will still be done.  Even family life stays on an even keel, learning can remain a central focus.    
Schedule  breaks.  It's natural for your youngster to feel restless at this time of year.  Suggest an outdoor break of 15 to 30 minutes between chores or homework assignments.  Planning a special outing on the weekend (a picnic in the park, a movie) may help motivate your child to finish her work.
Keep it simple.  Spring can bring extra responsibilities for the whole family-from last-minute school projects to household duties such as cleaning gutters.  Avoid overloading everyone's schedule by choosing only one extra task to accomplish each week.

Source: Reprinted with permission from Middle Years (c)2006 Resources for Educators a division of Aspen Publishers, Inc.