As children progress through the Outdoor School, their work demands greater independence in both thought processes and personal responsibilities. More emphasis is placed on developing abstract thinking skills. Teachers create activities in which children form an opinion and defend it in written and oral presentations, see the cause and effect of a historical event, and predict an outcome for a similar situation today.
When children move on to our high school or those in the are, they understand at a core level how to pursue their curiosity about life, and they have the confidence to do so. They have developed a love for learning and the self-motivation to succeed. Empowered by their experiences as fully vested members of the School community, our 8th-grade graduates become active members of their high school community and of the world at large.
These children waiver between independence and a sense of maturity and a desire to remain young and cared for. The youngest children in this group are often the “doers” and frequently take on more than they can handle while the oldest exude confidence while facing more internal question and self-doubt. Who their friends are and what they think is increasingly important. They are often excited about what they are learning as well as, for some, developing anxiety. They feel both thrilled and overwhelmed as they grow older.
Our teachers play a critical role in listening, reassuring, and supporting the new individual who emerges over these years.
In all of our classrooms, we provide a safe and nurturing environment where children make friends, build confidence, show compassion while expressing creativity.
Children thrive in social environments that create safe and healthy relationships and provide a strong sense of community. Daily planning meetings, working in small groups, organizing and lending a hand during classroom and community jobs, managing the school store, and serving as a delegate on the Student Judiciary, require these children to hone their organizational and systems thinking skills and make a sincere effort to be their very best selves.