compilation of photos of students working in different subject areas

Academic Program

Our 6th through 12th grade educational program is intentionally designed, rooted in our district's founding design principles, guided by a clear and firm set of educational values, spelled out in practical terms by our school-wide learning expectations, and based around a big-picture conceptual framework that students will see reflected and examined through the lens of each subject they study.

6th grade is a largely self-contained program that brings together students from Westshire Elementary and Samuel Morey Elementary in an intentional way. On the one hand the 6th grade program is a kind of transitional cocoon that allows students their own space and schedule, yet they become known by the school community and connected to the fabric of the school through assemblies, cross-grade mentoring with 10th graders, and arts and language classes with teachers who teach all grades. Read more about the 6th grade program and its Challenges component here.

7th and 8th grades extend the students' experience by giving them separate subject-matter specialist teachers in science, math, English, and history. At the same time, in the tradition and with the values of interdisciplinary learning, 7th and 8th grade teachers frequently work together on interdisciplinary projects. For example, a project based around the book Braiding Sweetgrass integrated science, social studies, and language arts, and a candle votive project integrated social studies, language arts, and math. 7th and 8th grade students continue taking arts and world language classes and furthering their relationships with those teachers and subjects

9th and 10th grades deepen students exploration into core subject areas through full-year classes in math, science, English, and social studies, with rigorous and interdisciplinary projects remaining a focal point as much as possible.

11th and 12th grades are intended to model a college seminar approach to learning where teachers develop courses around areas of passion and engage deeply in a particular topic within math, science, English, or social studies. In a class on Artificial Intelligence, students are tasked with building a game that is robot-proof. In Global Posters for Social Change, students study, reflect on, and ultimately create their own posters with messages about important issues in our world. 11th and 12th graders take upper level language classes and can take a course in Latin American Studies or French Cultures in a year where they may also travel with the school to France or South America. Grades 11 and 12 allow for a significant amount of freedom and self-direction, with students also exploring career interests through an internship or self-directed project and having the opportunity to take classes at Riverbend Career and Technical Center, Hartford Area Career and Technology Center, Dartmouth College or the Community College of Vermont.

Use the links below to read each subject area's use of the conceptual framework of Truth, Choice, Change, and Systems, to see each subject area's enduring understandings and essential questions, and to find a list of courses, course descriptions, and sample units by subject and grade level.