Why Northside?

The Advantage of a Northside Nursery through Eighth Grade Education

Williamsburg Northside School specializes in the foundational years. Our highly qualified teachers use their content knowledge and expertise of developmental needs of early childhood and young adolescent learners to design a student-centered, inquiry based curriculum from preschool through eighth grade. 

Children who arrive at Northside at 2 years old and graduate in 8th grade have the opportunity to grow and progress in a nurturing and warm school community for twelve years. Our model allows us to provide a program that celebrates childhood, and as a result, our students and families are able to focus on the present by celebrating all of the joys of childhood.

Our evidence suggests that, on average, students do worse academically when they attend middle schools than when they attend K–8 schools — and that this is true in urban, suburban, and rural settings."

 Martin West - Professor of Education at the Harvard Graduate School of Education

Students who attend a middle school compared to a K-8 school are likely to have a lower perception of their reading skills, finds a new study by NYU Steinhardt School of Culture, Education, and Human Development." 

Rachel Harrison - NYU Associate Director for Research Communications

We Love Northside!


Students begin their journey with inquiry based learning at Northside’s Reggio Inspired Preschool. We believe that children are naturally creative and curious, and our emergent curriculum, which is co-constructed by students and teachers, cultivates a lifelong passion for learning. Students develop their personal interests during these early years, which lays a solid foundation as they continue on into our K-8 program. Our elementary and middle school interdisciplinary curriculum is practiced through authentic project-based work that incorporates students’ choice and addresses real world experiences and problems. At every grade level, students begin to appreciate the connection between their project-based work and intended learning objectives.

We guide children on their educational journey in a healthy, safe, and supportive environment that fosters the development of strong, continuous peer and teacher relationships that allow children to feel comfortable to be their authentic selves, are intimately known, take intellectual risks and achieve their full potential. 

Our students flourish academically, socially, and emotionally at a developmentally appropriate pace. They tend to have a higher sense of self-esteem and confidence, which can contribute to a healthier adolescent development. 

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Ample research has indicated that children in smaller classes achieve better outcomes, both academic and otherwise, and that class size reduction can be an effective strategy for closing racially or socioeconomically based achievement gaps."

Small Class Size

As a result of our 6:1 student-teacher ratio, teachers are able to get to know the whole child. Teachers devote more time to individual students by regularly meeting with them one on one or through small group instruction to guide their learning and provide personalized,  timely, and responsive feedback for students to reach their potential. This also allows for differentiation to meet each child where they are academically, socially, and emotionally. Each child is encouraged to actively participate in class activities and discussions by sharing their ideas and perspectives. All children are seen, heard, and valued as a member of the learning community. 

Further insights on the Benefits of Small Class Sizes

Empowering Future Leaders

Our program provides students with various leadership opportunities. Research shows that students in PreK–8 schools express interest in leadership roles at a younger age. At WNS, our students take advantage of a wide range of academic, athletic, and service leadership opportunities. 

By the time our students enter eighth grade, they have a strong sense of self, both as learners and as members of society. Our students are well prepared for their transition to high school and take an active role in identifying high schools where they will thrive.