The C&C Gallery looks at the big picture of a C&C education. These photos of day-to-day life at C&C show the common threads that are woven through our programs and across the ages. Explore this inaugural exhibit on the students’ work with illustrated signs to gain a new perspective on the big impact of a truly progressive education.
Signs of a Progressive Education
“No one can observe the children working their way through the experiences described, without realizing that they are departing from the dictative, the imitative, and striking out into new and interesting trails of their own. Besides this, they are beginning to become adult in their ability to concentrate, to initiate, to beautify their surroundings, to adjust their relationships.” – Caroline Pratt, “Making Environment Meaningful”
As C&C Archivist I am caretaker to the trove of historical photos and children’s work carefully selected and preserved to document the early history of progressive education and our continued commitment to those foundations. These valuable records and images astound, but, as a visitor to the School reminded me, the everyday works of our students do much to illuminate what we do and why we do it.
From their earliest days in the Lower School, C&C children express themselves through the drawings and signs that adorn their classrooms and block constructions. This experience communicating and problem solving with visual tools builds and comes to a fine point when the children begin their 10s job as the School sign makers: designing and creating the official signage for the School. Door signs, hall signs, community advertising, rules of the school, and much more are processed by the 10s each year, in their own unique way, tying in beautifully with their study of the advent of the written word.
City and Country’s expansive, light-filled classrooms are filled with the work of children. Signs, charts, banners, and maps are visual representations that reflect the children’s research, work organization, and developing ideas. Organizing their thoughts visually provides a new way to look at their learning, and often a way to look at a question from a distance.
Middle and Upper School students at C&C perform essential School jobs for each age. These jobs require a significant degree and range of work, including creating promotions, internal communications, work distribution and problem-solving techniques. Many of these tasks utilize sign-making and design to get the job done.
Symbols & Design
Much of a C&C education is tied to exploring a concept inside and out. As children study a time and place in great depth, they inevitably explore the aesthetic of a culture and recreate it in their artistic and communications work. From hieroglyphics to coats of arms to furniture design, children manifest their increased knowledge in objects and art.