We create an intentional learning environment that blends the imagination of childhood with academic excellence. It’s a powerful combination that allows for mastery across the disciplines, engaging our students in a collaborative community of learners, while always providing the opportunity for individuality to shine.
Northside’s Lower School is founded on the belief and experience that engaging children’s powerful curiosity and passion for learning is critical to the development of higher order thinking. This includes integrating and applying knowledge from multiple disciplines, as well as the ability to approach complex problems with novel solutions. Northside fosters the development of creativity and flexible thinking, as well as students’ abilities to collaborate and communicate. This is accomplished through project-based explorations. The core idea that children are strong, capable learners, who are agents in their education, encourages self-confidence, independence and individuality. Balanced with respect for others in the community and for a collaborative work process, these beliefs provide the foundation for an education that is enriched and rigorous. Every day in the Lower School is a full one and includes instruction in reading, writing, word study, and Math. Student schedules are further deepened with specials in Science, Visual Arts, Music, Library, Spanish, and Physical Education.
Project Work Explained
The essential questions derived from and posited by our social studies curriculum form the core of our integrated approach to instruction. The questions classrooms pursue are mutually informed by student inquiry and established academic standards from around the globe. Our projects provide students the opportunity to acquire mastery of academic benchmarks through self-directed learning. Our teachers are expert facilitators in this work, by bringing questions and ideas to life from which our students can research, discuss, debate, interview, investigate, share, listen, and create. The long and short-term projects that emanate from our classrooms provide comprehensive learning and exposure to age-appropriate concepts in history, geography, political science, and economics, inculcating in our students the belief that they can be agents of change in the world.