Village School students are bursting with curiosity and eager to soak up as much knowledge as they can.
Our hands-on curriculum sparks a relationship to learning that’s fun and exciting. In the process, students establish a deep appreciation for the diverse and dynamic world around them.
The Village School curriculum is driven by our core competencies with a focus on four core units of study — literacy, numeracy, science and social studies. By the sixth grade, academics align more closely with the Middle School. Students manage their own schedule, make choices regarding arts, P.E. and language, and engage in more academic research projects, offering new opportunities to share their learning.
Village School Curriculum
Students confidently express their ideas in written, verbal and visual form. Reading and writing workshop groups and one-on-one conferences with teachers help students move from the basics of handwriting, spelling and phonics into oral reading, literature groups, researching and writing fictional and informational texts, journaling and poetry writing.
In the Lower Village (K-2), weekly visits to the Village library help students establish a deep appreciation for stories and books while time at the computer lab creates an immersive and technology-driven learning experience.
Students advance their technological skills, using computers, iPads and Smart Boards to practice PowerPoint, Internet research, word processing, keyboarding and math, while digital media art and animations tools like Pixie and KidPix are used to tell stories.
In the Upper Village (3-6), literature circles help students read, write and critically interpret texts with increasing insight, accuracy and depth. With ongoing opportunities to write fiction pieces, personal statements and nonfiction reports, students learn to write in various forms for different audiences.
In the Village, math is taught as a real-world subject so that students grasp it’s aliveness and activity in their daily lives. They develop increasingly challenging mathematical competencies with a focus on three key elements: problem-solving, conceptual understanding and procedural fluency.
The Chadwick canyon provides the perfect backdrop for exploring surrounding environments through a scientific lens and learning to hypothesize outcomes. In the Upper Village, a major focus on Earth sciences includes seismology, geology, ecology, weather, chemistry and physics. Students learn to think and work like scientists, engaging in frequent labs, keeping a lab notebook, framing questions and testing their own theories.
Respect for individual, social and cultural differences is a key focus as students journey through time, culture and geography, taking in-depth looks at the historical genesis and current events of California and non-western locales. U.S. history and government are also explored through experiential projects, research and discussions. Cultural holiday plays written and performed by students, expert guest speakers and field trips to El Capitan and Sacramento help bring this vibrant curriculum to life.
Life Skills & Social-Emotional Learning
In the Village School, children learn critical interpersonal skills like self-advocacy, consideration, cooperation, collaboration and negotiation. Programs such as Mindfulness, URSTRONG and Responsive Classroom help them create a strong community with their classmates. In sixth grade, a focus on social-emotional growth expands to include student meetings in small groups with individual advisors four times a week.
Mindfulness is an increasing part of our Village School curriculum. Studies have shown that daily mindfulness promotes resilience and reduces stress and anxiety.
The rhythmic sounds and cultural distinctions of Spanish and Korean are learned through an infusion of songs, poetry, storytelling, games and movement. This interactive learning increases recall and helps students make connections between the written and spoken language. Exploring the Korean language and culture prepares Village students to collaborate with Chadwick’s sister school in South Korea. In sixth grade, every student takes Latin and has a choice to take Spanish, French or Mandarin.
Starting in kindergarten through grade 5, students work on their presentation and theater skills through in-classroom drama lessons. Village drama projects include Walk Through the American Revolution and Walk through California, a performance of vignettes showing the history of the country and California. The Village drama teacher also supports K-6 students with the production of talent shows multiple times a year. The music program begins with singing and develops music appreciation through vocal and instrumental study and performance. Each year, students build upon their understanding of pitch, rhythm and musical literacy, composition and expression, with opportunities to play in the orchestra and sing during concerts. In grade 6, students can choose to more deeply explore the worlds of instrumental music, vocal music, drama or dance — each for one trimester.
The Village fosters character development through our core values: respect, responsibility, compassion, honesty and fairness. This integral part of the K-6 education emphasizes that becoming resilient, resolving conflicts, and understanding oneself and others are crucial to a successful and satisfying life.
The URSTRONG friendship curriculum teaches children a common language for managing conflict and creating a culture rooted in respect and kindness. This unique program empowers students with the skills and self-confidence to develop healthier relationships. Students learn how to stand up for themselves and the difference between healthy and unhealthy friendships.
Responsive Classroom is an evidence-based approach that focuses on the strong relationships between academic success and social-emotional learning.
Chadwick Village students immerse themselves in the visual arts, working with a variety of media that includes clay, paint, watercolor, pencil and more. In addition to expressing their own creativity, Chadwick artists learn about artistic masters through in-class lessons and field trips to local museums and landmarks.
In sixth grade, options expand as students choose one media course per quarter based on their own personal interest. Among others, options include drawing, painting, mixed media and ceramics.
With the thoughtful guidance of our teachers, Village School children become increasingly self-aware and adept at:
- Understanding and living by Chadwick’s core values
- Reading and understanding the feelings and perspectives of peers
- Adapting behavior to match the needs of a situation
- Resolving conflicts
- Expressing needs and feelings appropriately
- Learning the give-and-take of working with others
- Developing the flexibility to follow as well as lead
- Building persistence, resilience and confidence in the face of difficulties
- Understanding that there is more than one valid perspective or way to solve a problem
- Developing an appreciation for diversity in its many forms
- Thinking through challenging situations, anticipate likely outcomes and adjust behavior based on our core values
- Understanding and respect the feelings and perspectives of others
- Setting boundaries, negotiate conflict among friends and cope with peer pressure to conform
- Choosing friends thoughtfully and hone skills for entering new groups
- Admitting missteps and take responsibility for their own ideas, choices and behaviors
- Being assertive, find their true voice and develop peer leadership skills
See how Village School students go beyond academics to explore, expand and express themselves.