Curriculum Tree

Special Classes

We believe education is more than reading, writing and arithmetic. It’s also about art, music, play, and the great outdoors. That’s why every week our students explore a variety of new ideas and activities in special classes. 

Forest Fridays

In the forest, children connect to the natural and let their imaginations run free. That’s why we set aside time each week for them to venture outdoors. On Fridays, they have free reign of the nearby forest—we make forts, play games, and enjoy the magic of the woods.

Books and nooks and so much more…

Ask our students what makes The Common School special and most of them will say—the library. Of course, our library is an exceptional resource for the entire school, but it’s also where many students curl up in comfy nooks and pillow-lined corners and discover a love of reading that lasts a lifetime.

Our library is the heart of our school, but it’s also home to a collection carefully curated for children ages three to twelve. The shelves are lined with books that reflect our students, our diverse community, and our social justice values. Each week, all classes visit the library and meet with the teacher-librarian. Younger children look forward to story time, while older students use the resources for in-depth research and report writing, critical literacy lessons, poetry cafes, and more. It’s rare that a small elementary school like ours has a library at all, let alone one with over 20,000 volumes.

Everyone is an artist.

At The Common School, you won’t see formal art classes, but that doesn’t mean we don’t do art. In fact, just the opposite. Art is part of everything we do. It’s an integral part of our in-depth studies and classroom activities, and offered at choice time every morning. Because why limit art to once a week?

Music is everywhere.

All day long, you’ll hear music drifting throughout The Common School. It’s a joyful and uplifting part of who we are as a community. But did you know music can improve attention, behavior, and listening skills? Our music program doesn’t just invite kids to sit and listen closely, we inspire them to interact. Our call-and-response approach helps them appreciate music from a variety of cultures. All the while, students are learning about harmony, timing, cadence, and rhythm.

It’s time to play.

Common School kids are active kids. Whether it’s during outside time, recess, or group classes, you’ll see them most days (snow, rain or shine) running, jumping, climbing, and playing games. Younger students love exploring our BackYard playground and the many acres of nature trails that surround our school. Older students play in our Adventure Yard and can’t wait to test their skills in physical education classes twice a week, playing games like soccer, football, and capture the flag. They’re having fun, but they’re also learning about the importance of fitness and teamwork.