Welcome to REACH Reading with Ms. Duncan!


We will have a FABULOUS year together!

working hard
Put your problem-solving skills to the test!

Use your creativity to design cool projects and complete hands-on labs! 

Put all your forensics and criminology expertise to use during our field experience. 

Put your entrepreneur skills to work as you create your own business and sell your product to raise your tuition for Heifer Ranch. 

Learn all about the stock market and manage a simulated $100,000 portfolio! 

Utilize your team-building skills to thrive during our overnight trip to Heifer Ranch. 

class fun
Show your sassy side, your smarticle particles, and get comfy!

escape classroom
See if you can figure it all out and escape du
ring The Escape Classroom simulation! 


Challenge yourself and others at Chess!

quiz bowl

You can showcase your academic brilliance durin
g Quiz Bowl competitions.  Elmwood 7th/8th grade teams took 1st place in 2014 and 2nd place in 2016 at the regional competition!

I'll dress up with you on spirit days.


I fully expect you to have a bit of spunk!

Expect to be yourself and let your creativity shine!  We'll embrace our quirks and individuality, and we will have lots of fun and learn many exciting, new things together.  We'll also create new words and phrases 
oughout the year.  Maybe some will become mainstream and make their way into the dictionary!

I do have high expectations for you all.  I expect you to be kind to others, to put forth 110%, and to learn how to expand your brilliant little minds to their fullest potential!  

We will work hard, laugh a lot, and explore so 
many interesting concepts together.  Learning is FUN.  Expect to work on group projects, complete hands-on experiments, explore different cultures, read new genres, collaborate with your peers, and question, question, question!  I promise to give you my all and expect the same in return from you! 


Our REACH curriculum combines compacted Reading Standards with Gifted and Talented curriculum. 6th graders focus on problem-solving through a variety of avenues including forensics and criminology, while 7th graders focus on economics, the stock market, team-building, and global studies in preparation for our spring trip to the Heifer Ranch.  Both 6th and 7th graders will complete Competitive Edge projects throughout the year.

All of our assignments, announcements, and Competitive Edge opportunities will be posted in Google Classroom.  Please check Google Classroom often, as new information is added weekly.  

The three rings of REACH address an above average intellect, task commitment, and creativity/ problem-solving.  Both academic and social/emotional essentials are addressed throughout the school year. 

I welcome open parent/student communication at all times. Please do not hesitate to contact me about anything.  Email is always the best way to reach me , and I will respond as soon as possible. 

I will send out regular e-mail updates and remind updates. 

A little bit about Mrs. Duncan...



I have my Master's in Teaching from the University of Arkansas and my graduate endorsement in Gifted and Talented.  I also have undergraduate degrees in English and journalism (advertising and public relations) and minors in anthropology and communications, all from the U of A.  If you can't tell, I really like school!  I was an intern at EMS while completing my M.A.T.  My license areas include English, gifted and talented, speech/communications, and soon, journalism and ESL.  

I received a state funding grant for my National Boards Certification and became officially certified in December 2018!

During the summer of 2012, I had the opportunity to participate in a National Endowment for the Humanities program at Harvard where I studied children's literature under the direction of Maria Tatar. 

Northwest Arkansas is the only place that I have ever called home. I LOVE it!  I am proud to be a true Southerner and a huge HOG fan!

In my free time, which is sparse these days, I love to spend time with my family, read, travel, bike, hike, practice yoga, Pilates, attend concerts and the theater, and attempt to cook.  I love quotes, quirky people, and laughing until it hurts!

My husband and I welcomed our first baby, Baby Kathryn Blakely into the world on May 30, 2019! She is the joy of our lives!