Middle Division Academics

Curriculum, Daily Schedule, & Advisory

Curriculum

Building on the strong foundation provided by the Lower Division, students study mathematics, STEM, history, English, Spanish, and the visual and performing arts–with a continuing emphasis on critical thinking and social-emotional skills.

Learn about our curriculum

Daily Schedule

Our daily schedule reflects our understanding of how students learn and live best. Four 70-minute class blocks allow for deep, patient academic engagement. Regular breaks allow for nourishing community experiences and restorative play.

View our daily schedule

Advisory

Students in grades 6, 7, and 8 participate in daily mixed-age advisory groups, while students in grade 5 are in their own grade-specific advisory groups. Advisory groups serve as a means by which teachers can provide additional supportive coaching for middle division students as they move from childhood to young adulthood.

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Our Approach

Middle division students learn how to meet meaningful new academic and intellectual challenges in a supportive environment characterized by an authentic learner-centered growth mindset.

Additionally, our curriculum provides age-appropriate opportunities for social-emotional and intellectual development. Teachers develop expectations for growth that are personalized for each student, and grounded in four key areas of learning: social, emotional, behavioral, and cognitive.

During their time at the School, students are expected to and supported in developing the skills and confidence to:

  • learn to help, follow rules, practice good behavior;
  • encouraged by consistent rules and accountability, respond well to clear and simple expectations;
  • exercise empathetic discipline as limits are tested and mistakes are made;
  • learn to share and what it means to be a good friend;
  • listen and learn in small groups and larger groups.

Students are expected and empowered to:

  • develop the ability to be adaptable to change;
  • persevere in the face of challenge and tolerate frustration;
  • develop emotional intelligence:
    • honesty,
    • integrity,
    • confidence, and
    • compassion
  • guide, lead, and be responsible for self and others; and
  • develop healthy habits of emotional self-care while taking pride in the process.

Students are expected to and supported in developing the skills and confidence to:

  • expand viewpoints;
  • play imaginatively;
  • think literally;
  • think before acting;
  • explore and do;
  • gather information through all senses;
  • create and innovate; and
  • respond with wonderment and joy.

Students are guided to:

  • manage impulse control and self-regulation;
  • develop independence and self-help skills;
  • adapt to instances of delayed gratification;
  • demonstrate growing time management (focus for 15–20 minute periods).

Homework

The day is structured to afford students the time they need to engage deeply in the project of learning, working alone and together. Teachers assign only pertinent homework. Students may choose to work on long-term assignments on weekends; however, no routine homework is assigned on Fridays—with the occasional exception of Grade 8 students. In addition to the guidelines listed below, faculty may assign specific work to individual students to support their learning.

  • Grade 5: 45–60 minutes
  • Grade 6: 45–60 minutes
  • Grades 7–8: 60–90 minutes

Because students work at different rates, these time allotments serve only as a general guide.

View our student handbook

After-School Program

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Middle Division News

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