Our Mission

Shady Hill School wants children to be joyful, active learners who develop the intellectual discipline necessary to become contributing, ethical citizens. To accomplish these ends, we believe in the primacy of exploration and discovery, we advance the mastery of skills, and we help students shape meaning from knowledge.

Click here to read more about the Shady Hill mission.

Sustaining the Mission

The School:


  • Knows and honors the individual character and spirit of each child
  • Respects the pace of childhood and understands that true exploration takes time
  • Creates a safe environment that allows children to be curious, take risks, and make mistakes
  • Challenges prejudice, respects difference, and recognizes that multiple perspectives inform human experience
  • Encourages children to be independent thinkers who can transform ideas into meaningful action
  • Advocates learning through cooperation and collaboration
  • Designs and uses Central Subject, an interdisciplinary curriculum with a deep focus on a single theme or year-long topic
  • Emphasizes contact with primary sources and actual materials
  • Cultivates the power of creative thinking and academic excellence
  • Promotes the leadership of teachers and invests in their professional development
  • Offers an inspiring teacher training course for those preparing to enter the profession
  • Forges a lively, interdependent community of students, teachers, parents, alumni and administrators who work together to achieve the school's mission. 
Revised by Board of Trustees, April 2009


617.520.5260        178 Coolidge Hill    Cambridge MA 02138