Curiosity: Teaching strategies that establish and sustain a sense of wonder, desire for knowledge, and scaffold the inquiry process inspiring capable, confident, curiosity-driven learning. 

Character: Active focus on strengths, like gratitude, self-governance, initiative, resilience, compassion, courage, optimism and grit, which together enable successful learners, who contribute to their communities, and ‘live well’ as ethical citizens. 

Community: Intentional cultivation of meaningful and continuous connections. A strong academic and social program is made possible within a system of genuine and reciprocal relationships between students across grade level, their teachers, and families. 


Integrated: Learning is better synthesized and internalized when concepts and themes are reinforced within an interdisciplinary framework. 

Challenging: Students are challenged in a nurturing environment to move beyond their comfort zones to take risks, try new things, and do their best work. 

Authentic: Students learn by doing and make meaning from their own experiences. Information is presented in a meaningful context, is relevant to students’ interests, and has useful, real-world applications. 

Inclusive: Optimal learning takes place in an environment that honors each individual for who they are, meets students where they are, and values multiple perspectives, diversity, and social justice. 

Why Toddler - 8 Grade? 

Breakwater’s toddler through eighth grade structure is among our greatest assets.

Our configuration benefits our students in that

  • it allows a carefully constructed continuum of academic and social preparation where skills intentionally build on one another;
  • faculty communicate and collaborate within and across all grade levels allowing teachers to really understand each child and their family;
  • multiage partnerships foster a sense of dignity, belonging and purpose for both younger and older children in our school; 
  • they will encounter familiar language, expectations and experiences as they rise through grade levels building trust and a feeling of safety in the world; 
  • they encounter a dynamic range of educators with a rich depth of experience, wisdom and collective knowledge of child development and content; 
  • we affirm the integrity of childhood by placing as high a value on play in the older years as we do for our youngest friends, balancing the education of the heart and the mind throughout.