C&C began the Block Connection initiative 13 years ago, helping to fulfill founder Caroline Pratt’s vision of making a real change in how all children are taught, and bringing her approach to education to schools across the city. Partnering with public school teachers and administrators, C&C educators demonstrate how open-ended materials, unit blocks in particular, and a commitment to dramatic play, are crucial components of learning for young children. Through the initiative, C&C’s educators have extensively and successfully partnered with PS 38, PS 130, and PS 261 in Brooklyn, the Sicomac School in New Jersey, and with many other public schools on a smaller scale through Block Connection workshops.
Forty-five members of C&C classes from 1939 to 2018 and their guests came together April 12 for a Sing-Along with Music Teacher Maja Goceva, a Rhythms workshop with Rhythms Teachers Kate Tarlow Morgan ’68 and Zelda Gay ’06, followed by a general gathering in the Library.
C&C partnered with the other members of the Downtown Independent School Consortium to present “American Injustice” with Bryan Stevensonon February 20 at Friends Seminary. Stevenson is the founder of the Equal Justice Initiative, author of Just Mercy, and a professor at the NYU Law School. His Equal Justice Initiative is the founding organization of The Legacy Museum: From Enslavement to Mass Incarceration.
Stevenson shared his four-step prescription for positive change: Stay close to people we want to help; change the narrative of problems we are trying to affect; stay hopeful, stating, "injustice prevails where hopelessness persists”; do things that are uncomfortable and inconvenient.
Parent Humera Afridi reflected on the evening: “Proximity to the disenfranchised; changing the narrative; the opposite of poverty is not wealth but justice, the power of human connection—so much to think about!” Millie Cartagena, City and Country Director of Community Life, Equity, and Inclusion, shared, “I left with renewed hope for the future!”
City and Country has earned a Silver Accolade Award in the category of Fundraising Appeals: Individual, from the Council for Advancement and Support of Education (CASE) for our 2017-2018 Annual Appeal. Out of 112 awards, only two went to institutions that were not colleges or universities.
This award is added to C&C's growing roster of CASE awards, with a Bronze in the category of Fundraising Appeal: Individual for our 2016-2017 Annual Appeal and a Silver in Publications Design Multi-Page for the portfolio book, which featured the work of the VIs based on their visit to see the Phoenix art installation by Xu Bing at St. John the Divine.
C&C Principal Scott Moran joined over 200 other NYC and NY State Independent School leaders to create a statement on gun violence in schools published in the New York Times on Sunday, February 25. You can read the statement here.
Director of Community Life, Equity, and Inclusion Millie Cartagena, Director for Specials Program and Integration Gee Roldan, and Middle and Upper School Social Studies Consultant Joan Brodsky Schur presented "Schoolwide Social Justice Integration Across Ages 2–13: Lessons From a Work in Progress..." to a standing-room-only crowd of over 160 attendees at this year's annual NAIS People of Color Conference in Anaheim, California.
On Friday, November 3, Google Expeditions' Augmented Reality Program came to C&C. This was a collaborative event organized by Al Doyle, Chair Web & Multimedia Design and Deputy Chair Digital Media Design, Touro College; Ian Klapper, Technology Integrator/Support from C&C, AltSchool Head of School Alex Ragone; and Google.
City and Country Portfolio #1—Rising Up Together: The Social And Singular Voice at Six Years Old won a Silver Award as part of the Council for Advancement and Support of Education (CASE) District II Accolades!
Recently, the education magazine, Semeynoe, published two articles on City and Country School. Semeynoe focuses on home schooling, but is read by educators throughout Russia. We've translated the articles and added them to our site along with scans of the original articles.
The C&C community was saddened to learn over the weekend of Dahlov's passing. The beloved artist, illustrator, and children's book author died on the evening of February 10, after spending the morning at the easel in her Georgetown, ME, farmhouse.
The C&C community is saddened by the news of the passing of Sally—an alumna and former teacher who carried Caroline Pratt's philosophy to rural Maine. Her son, Steve Cartwright '65, shared the news with us, and allowed us to republish the obituary he wrote here in full...
C&C's Board of Trustees is delighted to announce that Scott Moran will be the next Principal of City and Country School, succeeding Kate Turley as she completes her 18th year as our Principal in July 2017.
Read more in the letters sent to our community by the Board of Trustees and Scott Moran:
“I think the biggest impact of C&C on what I do today, and how I live my life today, is the context of social responsibility, volunteering, giving back into the community. The whole atmosphere was much greater than just going into a classroom—it’s [your] job, and you take responsibility for that position.”
--Amanda Weiss ’71, Director Bible Lands Museum Jerusalem
by Alex Ragone and Jay Birdwell, edits by Millie Cartagena
At City and Country, social studies is the core of our program. From the earliest ages, a Social Studies based approach to learning helps students build empathy for those who are part of their greater community.
A Report from Ian Klapper, Technology Integrator and Support
City and Country School is one of the first Maker Schools. As an extension of children learning through doing, students continue to navigate through virtual and ‘real’ space in Computer. This year 3D printing has been incorporated into that work. We have used this technology as a tool for students to conceptualize, experiment, and actualize their vision. The students have taken quickly to the new technology, which is not surprising considering their use of other open-ended materials (blocks, paints, woodworking, etc.) throughout their time at C&C. Working through their ideas with this tool, in essence, makes use of one of the most open-ended materials currently available. Here are a few examples of the students' work with 3D printing:
In 2014, City and Country School collaborated with El Museo del Barrio on a workshop and a public event that rethought the concept of museums and cities as sites of educational experiences. A video of that collaboration, along with a fascinating Q&A with Jane Clarke, Director of Lower School, has now been made available.
After last year's passing of NPR journalist, author, wiccan priestess, and C&C alumna, Margot Adler, members of C&C's Class of 1960 gathered, both physically and virtually, to pay tribute. Their memories were gathered into this 10-page document. Classmate Willa Zakin Hallowell wrote a tribute to Margot which was edited for the recent Alumni Newsletter. It appears in full as an introduction here.
Art teacher Molly Herman's work is currently featured in a three-person show, Somewhat Slightly, at the Peninsula Art Space in Red Hook. Molly will be giving an Artist Talk during the Closing Reception at 6:00 p.m. on Sunday, November 23. The reception runs until 8:00 p.m.
DNAinfo.com covered our Archives Exhibit, "A Century of Learning From Children: Highlights from the City and Country School Archives," with a focus on how our School influenced, and was greatly influenced by, Greenwich Village.
Spring 2013 Newsletter:Dahlov Ipcar ('31) recently spoke with C&C from her home in Maine—just after finishing her usual morning painting. We are fortunate to share some of her reflections on her time at C&C in this Alumna Profile
Hurricane Sandy and the resulting power outages caused C&C to close its doors for a week. Our community put that time to good use by organizing a tremendous response that supplied labor, home goods, toys, food and even funds to residents in the hard hit areas of Broad Channel and Rockaway, Queens.
Felice Aull, graduate of City and Country School class of 1952, published her first poetry chapbook, The Music Behind Me, in October, 2012 (Alabaster Leaves Publishing). She reads from this collection at the Cornelia Street Cafe on Wednesday, May 22, 2013 at 6 p.m.
C&C archivist Jennifer Marck Moran recently uncovered a rare illustration of Caroline Pratt by an unidentified illustrator. Our only clue is written on the back: "A. Wilcox, 1934." We'd love to learn more about the origins of this drawing. Please contact us with any leads: Our tip line is open!
Principal Kate Turley and Director of the Lower School Jane Clarke will represent City and Country School in two panels at Sarah Lawrence College's Faces of Progressive Education in the 21st Century Conference.
Due to the anticipated inclement weather conditions tonight and tomorrow, the Family Service Day, scheduled for tomorrow, Saturday, February 9, from 10:00 - 12:00, has been rescheduled for Saturday, February 23, from 10:00 - 12:00.
Recommended Reading: C&C’s Diversity and Community Outreach Committees created a comprehensive list of books and websites to help teach children of all ages about critical social issues and the importance of reaching out to others.
C&C alumnus Peter Mandel ('71), children's book author (remember the XIIIs Bun, Onion, Burger review?) and travel writer, often recalls his memories of the City and Country library in national Op Ed pieces.
Former Rhythms teacher and C&C alum parent Michelle Gay's book Brain Breaks for the Classroom shares 40 "Quick and Easy Breathing and Movement Activities That Help Students Reenergize, Refocus, and Boost Brain Power-Anytime of the Day!"
C&C's resident math expert, Robert Berkman, sends our Middle and Upper School off to their winter holidays with a Math Newsletter, which has all sorts of idea on how to keep an interest in math going strong throughout the break, including recommendations for math videos, riddles, books, a puzzle, and an exhibit. Read the entire newsletter here.
Parenting speaker Nancy Samalin—known for her practical, concrete advice—has been a Parents Association speaker at C&C and has the following tips to share on understanding the difference between your child's needs and their wants.
Bring all sizes of coats (small child through adult) to the front lobby's green box, now through December 7 . . . and then take a peek into Alex's office to see all the donations C&C has gathered so far!
For the 3rd year in a row, C&C' s mini-golf installation was chosen to be part of the Figment summer-long arts festival on Governor's Island.The social studies-themed game was conceived and designed by teachers Ian Klapper and Maggie Ens, and turned into reality with much painting, gluing and building support from C&C families. The debut of the game was a festival favorite and will be on the Island through September.
Last week, nine representatives of C&C’s Middle/Upper School teaching and administrative staff headed to Chicago to present at and participate in the nation’s leading Progressive Education conference, the theme of which was “The Power of Progressive Practice.”
Our newest issue of Currents on Rhythms was mailed to all families last week. You can also download it or read it below and learn more about our unique program that focuses on developing strength, flexibility, non-verbal communication, dramatics, and a well-rounded sense of self and spirit. Click here to read more.
C&C’s Director of Admissions, Elise Clark, is quoted in New York Magazine’s recent piece on kindergarten admissions, The Junior Meritocracy by Jennifer Senior. Our sensible approach to standardized tests and our emphasis on the whole child is lauded. Check it out here.
Scott Moran, C&C's Director of the Middle and Upper School, recently gave a very well-received workshop and presentation at the Progressive Education Network Conference. Take a look at a summary of his work below and look out for an upcoming edition of Currents which will touch on many of his points about technology and progressive education.
Play in schools continues to gain attention in the mainstream media. Two weekends ago, you may have seen the article in the New York Times Magazine (9/25/09), "Can the Right Kinds of Play Teach Self-Control?" about a play-based curriculum in a preschool in New Jersey, and theories and research on play and children's development.
C&C's longtime approach to literacy is seen as new in traditional settings: an 8/29/09 article in the New York Times focused on an educational movement that offers students the opportunity to choose their own reading books. The Library Program at C&C is founded on this principle. You can read the Times article here, and check out a recent Alumni Newlsetter article we wrote about the C&C Library Program here.