From the 8s through the 10s (Grades 3–5) at City and Country, children apply and expand the academic and social skills they have acquired in the Lower School.
C&C’s widely-known Jobs Program offers multiple avenues for developing and consolidating skills in mathematics, writing, reading, and group problem solving. Each Group performs a specific school Job that affords rare opportunities for practical, engaging, and meaningful learning experiences. The 8s run the School’s internal Post Office, while the 9s manage the School’s Store, each Group acquiring first-hand knowledge of how a business works within the School community. The 10s are the School’s Sign Makers. In addition to instilling in children a deep respect for and understanding of a full spectrum of social roles within a community, the Jobs Program teaches children to be responsible to themselves, their Group, and the School. Because they are performing real jobs that meet real needs, the children develop a genuine sense of ownership and a distinct pride in their school community.
Our Social Studies-based program focuses on one period of history for an entire school year. We firmly believe that this in-depth approach to learning helps children develop a multifaceted understanding of history. Social Studies encompasses social justice, geography, archeology, sociology, philosophy, economics, religion, politics, and art in an attempt to understand what people believed and how they conducted their lives. Investigation into these areas is skillfully guided by the teachers but also driven by the interests of the children themselves, borne from their questions and pursuant research.
Throughout the Middle School years, past cultures are thoroughly explored through the eyes of Native American Indians, American immigrants and pioneers, Ancient Egyptians and Mesopotamians, and those living during the Medieval periods. Trips to historic sites and museums, first-hand accounts such as journals, diaries and newspapers, plus literature from and about the period being studied provide rich source materials for research.
The process of learning from firsthand experiences remains at the heart of the Middle School Program. For example, to culminate their study of westward migration, the 9s embark on a week-long country trip that replicates the daily life of pioneers. The ultimate goal is for the children to become so involved in their study of a specific period that they will know “in their bones” what it was like to be a person living in that time.
Specials become an integral part of the weekly routine, providing the children not only with multisensory modes of learning and the skills intrinsic to each discipline, but also the opportunity to express the information they are acquiring through their social studies research in the classroom.
As students end their time in the Middle School, they are ready for the abstract thinking, growing independence, and greater responsibility of the Upper School.