Each school year since 2000-2001, our faculty and students come together across grade levels to explore a school-wide theme with our extended community. Launched each fall, the annual theme serves as a way to re-imagine and re-interpret longstanding curricular units. The theme is incorporated into curriculum through classroom projects, the arts, and athletics.
The 2018-2019 school-wide theme is "Story." The theme of story will be incorporated into curriculum in numerous ways as we investigate how each of us has our own personal narrative, how stories enhance empathy and understanding, and how stories passed down create history. Story has a natural relationship to language arts, reading, and the library but also to each discipline including word problems in math, the story of a science experiment, an athletic team's story each season, and the story of a work of art or a piece of music.
Our 2017-18 school-wide theme was "REACH." During this year, students explored "reach" as it pertained to their studies, personal lives, and the world around them. Reach was investigated in relation to our community members reaching beyond themselves and gaining a better understanding of each other and our globally connected world.
Our 2016-17 school-wide theme was "POWER." For the first time, a student-run election was held so students, faculty, and administration could select the theme. This election was also an opportunity for a real-world exploration of elections, the political process, and the importance of taking action to vote. Students studied power in relation to the 2016 presidential election focusing on the power of democracy, abuse of power, and individual power. Students from developmental kindergarten through eighth grade explored "power" as both personal and community based examining many forms of power such as the power of language, power of collaboration, the power of differences, and the physics of power. They examined it in the context of their classroom studies and their personal lives. The theme was incorporated into curriculum through classroom projects, the arts, and athletics.
The 2015-16 theme was "ACTION." Students approached action from a past, present, future and strategic viewpoint. They studied Newton's Laws and action and reaction in science. From math and science to arts and humanities, our students explored the various meanings of action and its impact on our lives. They took action in physics, math, and engineering by creating Rube Goldberg machines to transport a marble across a room. Classes explored the cultural significance of street art and how social action in music and art can make the world better.
In celebration of our 20th Anniversary, the 2014-15 theme was "TIME." The 2013-14 school-wide theme was "BRIDGES." Students investigated the science of bridges: What holds a bridge up? What makes a bridge strong? They also participated in an engineering design collaborative creating and building their own bridges. As a community we also examined "bridges" as an idea: What brings us together as a class? as a culture? as a community?
Past themes have included:
2000-2001 The Ties the Bind Us
2001-2002 The Environment