OUR CORE VALUES
STRONG STUDENTS STAND ON A STRONG FOUNDATION
A coherent curriculum is at the heart of the ICS education. We believe background knowledge and cultural literacy enable a student to flourish in any environment.
At too many schools, changing subjects is like flipping channels. We believe that students’ lessons should build upon one another, whenever possible.
The difference between facts and knowledge is context. So we start at the beginning, exploring ancient civilizations, and work our way forward.
KNOWLEDGE MEANS NOTHING WITHOUT CHARACTER
Intelligence plus character – that is the goal of true education. – Martin Luther King, Jr.
The virtues we cultivate matter as much as the subjects we teach. Knowing the periodic table, or the branches of government, is useful. Knowing how to listen respectfully to someone else’s point of view is essential.
We believe “book learning” goes hand-in-hand with personal habits and values. Habits like empathy, curiosity and persistence. Values like courage, compassion and respect.
DIVERSITY IS ONE OF THE GREATEST TEACHERS
Studies show a more diverse school helps all students perform better. When children share a class with those different from themselves, they encounter new ideas and points of view. They develop critical thinking, problem solving, and empathy.
Most important, they lay the groundwork for the society we all aspire to.
Much of NYC is segregated, by both race and wealth. Our own district has one neighborhood with 10x the median income of the next one over. Children from these neighborhoods rarely cross paths. We are committed to changing that dynamic.
Our coherent, sequenced curriculum sets us apart. Children form a love of learning when their lessons fit together, to help them understand their world better.
They see the connections: literature is shaped by history, which is shaped by geography, which is shaped by science.
Our students learn about peoples and cultures around the globe, going back to the earliest times. Babylonian history? In kindergarten? You bet! The more background knowledge students have, the more prepared they are for the world of today.
Our education aligns with the Common Core State Standards.
ICS follows the Responsive Classroom model, based on the belief that students need academic, social, and emotional skills to succeed.
The Morning Meeting embodies this approach. Students and teachers start each day by gathering in a circle for the four routines: greeting, sharing, group activity, and morning message.
To learn more about the Responsive Classroom, go here.