Breakwater is often described as a magical place, where students are nurtured as individuals, challenged academically, and inspired to love learning. And while it does seem magical to find our children smiling at the end of a long school day, there is a method to the magic.
But what does this actually look like? How does the "Breakwater Way" show up for your child on a daily basis? This is what we strive to make visible in our Curriculum Information Night.
Join us for the what and the how -
When we say our curriculum is integrated, we mean both horizontally across disciplines and vertically across ages. An integrated, thematic curriculum gives children the continuity, order, choice, and challenge they need to stay engaged in their work, and brings a level of meaning and understanding that is unsurpassed. Additionally, we are a toddler - grade eight school that prioritizes multiage collaborations, making us a unique learning environment. What does both horizontal and vertical integration look like in our classrooms this year?
Throughout Breakwater we affirm the integrity of childhood by placing high value on play. In the upper grades, we might also refer to play as discovery, interest based learning, or “messing about”. Research has undeniably shown that children (and adults, for that matter) learn new skills and process experiences best during this type of engagement. Play based curriculum provides optimal outcomes for growth and development, and the most enduring internalization of skills. How does play, a powerful pathway to learning, show up for children throughout grade levels?
With our hands-on approach, we ready students for success in the world they will inhabit as adults by providing extraordinary learning opportunities in the present. Visiting classrooms during Curriculum Night will give clear impressions of the ways we teach children how to think - rather than what to think. This is not a semantic difference, this is the heart of our teaching philosophy. Messing about and academic rigor go hand in hand, developing the higher order thinking skills (“21st century skills”) required to thrive in a rapidly changing society. What does academically challenging exploration look like in our classrooms?
Children need access to nature the same way they need good nutrition and adequate sleep. It is fundamental to their growth and wellbeing. At the heart of our Mission is the edict to inspire children to “live well on the planet.” As recess and other outdoor activities that were once part of any school day have disappeared from traditional curriculums, we are running in the opposite direction. We bring children in meaningful, playful contact with the natural world, inside and outside, rain or shine. How, when and where are children interacting with the natural world?
And, how does "personalized" happen? Activities that arise from students’ questions are highly relevant to them and motivate deep engagement. Children at Breakwater are known well by faculty and deeply embraced by their “village”. This enables us to tailor learning opportunities to a child’s interests, and social/ emotional support to a child’s needs. To do this optimally, teachers rely on a strong home alliance. Share Curriculum Night with us - and help build that partnership.
T-8 Curriculum Information Night - Schedule
- 5-6pm toddler-kindergarten classroom presentations / followed by a reception with EC art, music and tinkering Essentialists Essentialists from 6-7pm
- 5-6pm reception with presentations by grade 1-8 art, music, Spanish and tinkering Essentialists in the Curiosity Lab / followed by grades 1-8 classroom presentations from 6-7pm
- 5-6pm Capstone information for 8th grade students and families / followed by 6-7pm classroom presentations for 7th grade families.