Our curriculum uses essential themes and questions to create a framework for learning. Essential themes are big ideas, and the essential questions, which are generated from the themes, have no easy answers. They provide a deep and rich context for inquiry and learning across disciplines and allow students to examine issues through many different lenses.
When learning is connected, it opens up a world of possibilities for students—layer-by-layer, year-to-year. For example, the patterns Kindergartners discover in nature lead into the relationships 1st graders explore between animals, plants, and the environment. The conceptual connections continue as 2nd graders examine how people and cultures adapt and as 3rd graders unpack the ways people initiate and react to change—and so on. Learning spirals, so students delve deeper and deeper into concepts and skills.