1. Lots of drama and gossip.
2. We get tons of homework.
3. It's easy to get detention.
4. Getting detention once isn't a huge deal.
5. We're older now, don't treat us like babies.
6. Some kids swear A LOT.
7. Some teachers play favorites with students.
8. Some teachers don't like kids.
9. Kids know more than adults think they know.
Last fall, I asked sixth graders to write down answers to some questions about the first day of middle school. At the end one boy handed me a tiny folded up piece of paper. I thanked him and opened it up in the hall. It said, "Most people treat you like less when you're a kid."
Over and over I go to the source, the people I am writing about and they provide details, concerns, and insights that make my stories better.