The 8/9s have a dedicated period each week to focus on research projects of their choice. They can work independently or in small groups. They work closely with the librarian and the technology teacher during this time to design and integrate research and technology to enhance their learning and deepen their understanding. When the projects are completed the children then have an opportunity to share their work with parents and the larger school community. It is a wonderful way for students to inspire each other’s learning, and for the students to gain more experience with the collaborative process and public speaking.
The 9s and 10s also collaborate once a week for a special 9/10s mixed math period, which is centered on problem-solving and project-based math. This is an excellent opportunity to have the 10s mentor the 9s and provides both groups with additional elevated math instruction. This results in detailed preparation for moving into middle school math and test prep for the ISEE which is taken in the fall of 10s as a component of the outplacement process.
Project time is a shared and dedicated time in the 8/9s and 10s schedule, which includes a variety of learning opportunities for children throughout the year. All specialists are available at this time and help provide additional experiences to work within their specialized domains. There are three sections of Project Time over the course of the year. September through December, Project Time I includes specialist electives for the 8/9s, and Flex Time for the 10s. Some of the electives the children can choose from are: Jazz Band, Team Sports, Claymation, Literary Performance, and Animal habitats and conservation. Flex Time for the 10s is used for the outplacement process in the fall. They can practice being interviewed, work on essay writing and review concepts and strategies for test-taking. During Project Time II the 8/9s and 10s can come together for a different collaborative project-based learning opportunity. Whether it is STEAM challenges (2014-15), or partnering with Lincoln Center Education (2015-16) with teaching artists, the children get to mix and mingle while they explore innovative ways of learning about the world around them. This coming year we are excited to begin this partnership with Lincoln Center Education, and collaborate with actual artists to study a piece of artwork, or performance at Lincoln Center, as the children work side-by-side with them exploring the medium, motivation, and message of the artist. Project Time III is dedicated to Service Learning. The 10s partner with our sister school, The Co-Ed School of Eagles in Haiti, to learn about the students and what their daily lives are like. Through this relationship, they work with the other students to determine a project, or cause, that they can help support the school with. Most recently, the 10s decided to fundraise to help provide new desks for the students. They decided to make their own natural hand sanitizer and sold it at various school events and functions. The 8/9s explore service learning in our local community, connected to city parks, and green spaces like The Highline, or connected to the Hudson River with The River Project. Project Time is unique to Corlears and is a very special part of the upper grades experience