Our immersive approach emphasizes depth over breadth, connects subject matter to the human condition, and taps students’ creativity, intelligence, and empathy in meaningful, enduring ways. Shady Hill teaches students to think, to question, and to consider multiple perspectives before transforming their ideas into meaningful action.
A teaching approach called Central Subject is the fundamental organizing force behind Shady Hill's curriculum. It is a year-long study around which each grade, III - VIII, focuses its work in history, literature, geography, and writing. It is the study of a people, a period of history, an idea or movement. It is a way of organizing subject matter that is flexible, inclusive, frequently changing in its application, yet constant in its commitment to certain approaches to study. Other academic activities—art, music, science, dramatics, math, and athletics—frequently become parts of the Central Subject curriculum. This integrated and highly rigorous approach to learning turns even young students into scholars and researchers. Younger grades pursue a variety of Thematic Studies that reflect the Central Subject methodology by integrating areas of learning, but in shorter, age-appropriate units.
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