Building on the Primary and Intermediate Division programs, which lay the foundations for inquiry and project-based integrated learning, the Middle Division of The School continues to foster the academic and social-emotional development of our students. Our goal is to help students become their best selves: intrinsically motivated self-advocates who develop a clear understanding of themselves as learners and co-creators of the world around them. Teachers differentiate instruction in the classroom to both challenge and scaffold a wide range of learners. Student-to-teacher feedback is conducted in a variety of formats including assessments, letter grades, checkpoints, homework and class engagement.
Strong interpersonal relationships, executive functioning, and social-emotional learning are fostered through our advisory program. In addition, Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health partners with The School to provide gender and sexuality education as part of our Life Skills curriculum. We cover a full range of topics from developing healthy relationships, affirmative consent, and identity development to cyber safety.
Students have many opportunities to explore leadership in the Middle Division. We encourage both formalized leadership roles such as in student government, as well as fluid leadership opportunities through a wide array of athletics, clubs, curricular and annual activities.
Culminating a K-8 Social Justice curriculum and myriad service learning opportunities throughout their time at The School, the capstone project of the Middle Division is the Social Action Project in Grade 8. Every student identifies a cause—local, regional, national or international—they are passionate about, and determines ways they can help move it forward. At the end of the year, they present their projects to The School community at an exhibition, so other students and families can learn about, and possibly also contribute to, their cause.
Beginning in the spring of Grade 7, Middle Division students begin the high school placement process, in which they apply and gain entry to a range of public, private, boarding, and parochial schools in the tri-state area and beyond. The School's goal is to place every student in a school environment in which they will continue to thrive. Families and students collaborate with our High School Placement Office on an individualized process to research and choose schools that best fit each student's needs and personality. As part of this process, The School offers test preparation for standardized testing for high school entry.
The Middle Division at The School at Columbia is an academic and energetic environment, in which children continue to realize their strengths, develop their focus, and grow as students.
Middle Division Director