Middle School Grades 5-8
The Open Window School Middle School program is designed to challenge, engage, and nurture students in their adolescent years.
Stimulated by the intellectual challenge of an advanced curriculum tailored specifically to the needs of gifted children, fifth, sixth, seventh, and eighth graders are supported by caring teachers and a positive peer group. With approximately 160 students, the Middle School is large enough to provide a vast array of learning opportunities, yet small enough that every child is known, valued, and has an opportunity to develop their unique talents.
Middle School students are engaged in authentic learning that has an impact beyond the classroom. Learning is strengthened through off-campus community partnerships that provide an authentic context and real connection for the work that students do in the classroom. From designing experiment to be conducted aboard the International Space Station or in the rainforests of Costa Rica to working with a lobbyist to guide a bill through the state legislature, Open Window students are active learners and doers rather than passive consumers of information.
Students begin each day in small grade-level families, called "advisories” where they share successes and challenges and work on personal growth in a space where they are honored and supported as the developing young adults they are becoming. Advisory also provides a brave space for discussion on important topics in student’s lives. Our school has a strong commitment to Social and Emotional Learning
and active engagement in the school’s Diversity, Equity, and Belonging
mission. Students in middle school learn proactively to recognize and manage emotions, care about others, develop positive relationships, behave ethically and responsibly, and make good decisions.
Students meet in larger mixed groupings throughout their day as they travel to core classes in humanities, math, science, Spanish, and PE/Health. Students are encouraged to explore a wide variety of interests. Students in grades fifth and sixth build a solid foundation of skills in drama, music, visual arts, and technology. In grades seventh and eighth, students build upon these skills as they choose from an array of elective courses in the visual and performing arts and dive deep into technology in our state-of-the-art Innovation and Technology
lab. Many of our middle school students enjoy connecting with other peers as they participate in a wide variety of afterschool extracurricular classes and teams
. Each school year our program culminates with weeklong spring Hallmark Trips that allow students to further expand learning as they build important skills for developing confidence and independence.