As the first 20 days of school wind down, and we start to cruise through our days with a bit of ease and familiarity, this trimester’s Integrated Unit of Study is firmly underway. The Integrated Unit, a cornerstone of PCS curriculum, draws together multiple disciplines (literacy, mathematics, science, history, art, and more) into a multi-dimensional, project-based, trimester-long study of a topic shared by all of the grade levels at PCS. Integrating disciplines encourages comprehensive and complex thinking; unifying study across grade levels promotes breadth of learning as classes collaborate and differentiate to cover a broad range of ideas related to the topic. This fall, the focus of PCS’s Integrated Unit of Study is Astronomy.Read More
One of the ways that PCS launches the school year is with the process of creating Hopes and Dreams. Inspired by Responsive Classroom and the First 20 Days approach to a new school year, each student at PCS documents his or her hopes and dreams for the commencing school year.
Hopes and Dreams – whether dangling stars, paper lanterns, inscribed rocks, or beaded mobiles – are created to be shared and displayed. As we read and reflect on these goals, we get to know one another, feel comfortable sharing our ideas in a group, and are reminded of our shared purpose.Read More
In 1981 the United Nations declared September 21st The International Day of Peace, a day devoted to “commemorating and strengthening the ideals of peace.” This past week at PCS has been a collaborative effort amongst PCS students to understand, articulate, and share both individual and communal ideals of peace. Working in multi-age groups, students read and reflected, wrote and drew, sewed and painted, researched and sung, to create vibrant portraits of what peace looks and feels like to children at PCS.Read More
Finding the Beat of a New Rhythm
The first twenty days of school at PCS are a time of introductions – to the people, the spaces, and the expectations of our new school community – and our approach to these first weeks of school is inspired by Responsive Classroom. We dedicate time and attention to settling in, fostering community, exploring our school environment, and practicing the predictable routines and rhythms that allow our students to feel secure and successful throughout the year. Together, classes spell out expectations, articulate rules, document hopes and goals, and establish structures that build a trustworthy space for learning and collaboration.Read More