Students drive their own discovery and creativity within an integrated curriculum focused on challenge, choice, and relevance. Going far beyond book learning to authentic engagement, students apply a solution-focused mindset to local and global issues. In the process, they enhance their communication, collaboration, and digital skills. And they expand their understanding of art, politics, science, and society during class trips, outdoor activities, and student-driven initiatives.
Here are just a few examples of what experiential learning looks like inside and outside the classroom at Principia Middle School.
Inside the Classrooms
The Middle School's interdisciplinary curriculum encourages young people to develop a deeper and broader understanding of themselves and the world. Learning becomes more relevant through the use of projects or concepts based on real-life issues that require thoughtful solutions and are meaningful to the students. Students are taught that successful problem-solving occurs when one draws ideas from a broad base. Projects include building replicas of New York City, experiencing a Model United Nations, and creating overseas vacations, to name a few.
Designed to foster character development and build future-ready skills, Principia Adventure instills lessons of collaboration, problem-solving, and leadership through experiential learning opportunities and outdoor activities such as rock climbing, lashing, canoeing, and biking.
From set building and costuming to audio production and acting, Theater Week brings a script to the stage in the span of one week. Students are responsible for all performance-related tasks, working in teams to bring the show to life. Many of the classes and experiences in the Middle School focus on intentional collaboration and communicating ideas effectively. Theater Week allows students to come together, learn new skills, express creativity, and share the fruits of their labor with the larger School community.
Middle School Retreat
Each fall, Middle School students embark on a two-night trip to fortify friendships and further develop social and emotional skills that carry them through the school year. It’s also an opportunity to introduce the Middle School culture of inclusivity and respect—and solidify expectations for the school year. In line with the Middle School’s approach to authentic experience-based learning, the retreat helps to build collaboration, communication, and a solution-focused mindset in a unique and challenging environment.