Countryside Day Blog

How does the curriculum compare to the public school curriculum? Who develops this curriculum and how?

May 13th, 2019
All Countryside teachers have completed teacher training from the Association Montessori Internationale for the level of students they teach. This training offers a complete complement of content in the curriculum areas which are then taught in a manner that has been found to most effectively help students learn, including: Hands on materials Student choice throughout the day Short periods of direct instruction followed by collaborative and individual work Constructive creation of content rather than... READ MORE

How will I know how my child is performing and if they are hitting age appropriate milestones (especially if there are no tests or grades)?

May 13th, 2019
To start, students in the Middle School program do in fact take tests, receive grades and reports cards in the core curriculum areas. In addition, they have student led conferences twice per year. Additional communications are conducted on an as-needed basis. In all other Countryside programs, our experienced teachers are cognizant of benchmarks for every developmental and grade level, and they are constantly assessing student learning in informal ways. Because work with students is always... READ MORE

My child needs discipline and cannot be expected to lead his own education. I don’t think this approach is right for him. How would you keep him on track?

May 13th, 2019
All students have different levels of freedom to direct their own days. Teachers are not simply following the child. Students who do not demonstrate readiness to direct the course of their own days will receive more direction from the teacher including collaborating on work choices for the day, working near a teacher’s lesson table for more oversight, checking in after each work is completed, etc... However, the ultimate goal is helping students to internalize these... READ MORE

How do you prepare students for public high schools and traditional college programs that ARE lecture-based and require memorization and test-taking skills to be successful?

May 13th, 2019
The truth is that students don’t need to be prepared for conventional education. Transitioning from conducting the course of their own days, managing mentoring responsibilities, caring for the environment and keeping up with class assignments to essentially following direction is not difficult for our students. They have high expectations for themselves; they value education and learning. With the emphasis placed on the three Rs: respect, responsibility and resourcefulness, our students are prepared to figure out... READ MORE

How do Countryside Day School Alums perform in high school?

May 13th, 2019
The overwhelming majority of our students transition into high school very successfully. Some feel a sense of loss of the community that CDS fosters, but that does not stop them from achieving and creating the community they desire in their next schools. One of our graduates stated it best: “Countryside is definitely worth it. The transition wasn’t easy, but you get over it once you find your friends. Besides it’s good experience to have some... READ MORE

How do you ensure academic equivalency with the public schools?

May 13th, 2019
Our faculty takes public school curriculum into account and incorporates subject and content areas when appropriate. But our goal is not to recreate the public school curriculum. We are not a “better public school.” We offer a qualitatively different educational experience in countless ways that are explained throughout the website and instantly evident when visiting CDS classrooms. ... READ MORE

How is Montessori different?

May 8th, 2019
The classrooms are mixed aged. Students “practice life” in micro societies that emulate real life giving them a significant head start on the transition into adulthood. Students choose their own activities, with varying levels of direction from and oversight by teachers, from a range of options and have uninterrupted blocks of work time fostering independence. Immediately following introduction to new material—when a student’s interest is at its peak—is the optimal time for deep and... READ MORE

How do these principles help prepare students for today’s world?

May 8th, 2019
We give students choices so they learn to think and make choices independently. This also helps students to know their strengths and areas for improvement. We give them responsibilities, so they learn the importance and value of contributing. Our goal is for all of our students to understand their relationship with the world and that their actions matter. We all learn most from our mistakes. Setting students up for constant success is not preparing... READ MORE

How do you ensure academic equivalency with the public schools?

May 8th, 2019
While our approach is quite different than traditional school, we understand the pressure to “achieve academically.” Our students do exceptionally well as they transition to high school and score competitively on all standardized tests. We ensure they are still learning the core curriculum taught by our public school counterparts. Our Faculty take public school curriculum into account and incorporate subject and content areas when appropriate. Students also take national standardized tests twice a year... READ MORE

Why should you choose Countryside Day for your child?

April 11th, 2019
Countryside Day School understands education in a deeper and more complex way than conventional education. At CDS, we balance the highest academic rigor with the development of critical qualities of character. Education can no longer simply transmit academic content. CDS gives students an educational experience that allows them to “practice life” in classrooms that are micro-communities that emulate real life. Every day is different. Every day presents new opportunities and new challenges. Students are constantly... READ MORE

Countryside Programs

We offer a continuous program from 16 months through 8th grade — inculding an all year program option for Pre-K/K and elementary school. LEARN MORE

TODDLER — Ages 16 mos.-3yrs

PRE-K/K — Ages 3-6

LOWER ELEMENTARY — Ages 6-9, Grades 1-3

UPPER ELEMENTARY — Ages 9-12, Grades 4-6

MIDDLE SCHOOL — Ages 12-14, Grades 7-8

SUMMER PROGRAMS — Ages 16 mos.-12 yrs., Toddler-Grade 6

ALL YEAR FULL DAY — Ages 3-12, Grades Pre-K/K-Grade 6