The BNS-BCS learning community lives and breathes its vision for a vibrant, dynamic and organic educational environment. Our success in fulfilling this vision is palpable in our classes, halls, offices, and homes. Our classrooms are communities of adults and students engaged in inquiry-based and expeditionary learning. Members are encouraged and nurtured to develop their own voice: to ask questions, express opinions and ideas, and to challenge themselves to excel. In return, they are respected and valued for their contributions. In this culture of mutual responsibility and common purpose, there is a demand to strive for personal and community excellence. Our students and adults (teachers, guidance staff, school leaders, support staff, and family members) are engaged on any given day in teaching and learning, town meetings, governance, service learning, discussions, performances, school magazines and newsletters, peer mediation, student-led conferences, and self-assessment practices. Our commitment to open discourse is achieved through ongoing conversations that take place in person, online, or on the phone, in and out of school. This practice also serves as a model for the development of good communication skills for our students. Our learning community functions as a participatory democracy, where everyone has the opportunity to have a voice and be heard. Diversity is cherished and nourished. Intentional choices are made to create an environment rich in racial, ethnic and economic diversity, with the belief that this leads to greater success in learning. The inclusion of different styles of learners in our classrooms is supported by differentiated instruction, and where applicable, two teachers in a class. Additional support comes from academic intervention teachers, teaching coaches, psychologists, social workers, guidance counselors, a school nurse and the onsite full service clinic from LICH. Family involvement strengthens our community. Parents may participate in classroom learning, project time, day and overnight trips, committees, and school events, or volunteer as tutors or mentors for high school students. Our inquiry-based curriculum integrates the content areas by exploring big ideas in depth. Using a project-based approach, teachers and students study and discover the world and through this exploration, discover themselves. Expeditionary learning takes us out of the confines of a classroom's four walls, and into the world at large. In BNS, it may be the study of playgrounds or Ancient China over the course of a semester, while in BCS, it may be exploring the bio-ecology and history of the Gowanus Canal or charting the disease process of cancer. Our learners evidence the integration and interdependence of multiple academic disciplines first hand. Math, writing, reading, language, history, science, and the arts can be clearly seen, and appreciated as interconnected. We constantly assess our students to ensure that each child is learning. At BNS, daily work, activities, and projects give teachers information about what a child knows and needs to learn. At BCS, students and teachers self-assess and discuss progress along defined learning targets, which state what students are expected to know and be able to do in every course. The expectations that we place on our students and ourselves are high. Long after students have left for the day, our community of adults remains engaged in conversation and planning. The leadership of our schools guides our learning community toward fulfilling its mission. Our passion for education finds its expression in both inquiry and expeditionary-based learning curriculums and in the collaborative nature of our practice. All who participate in this thriving community embrace our culture of mutual respect and caring and our belief in each and every child's excellence. Web Info thebrooklynnewschool.org bcs448.org
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610 Henry Street
Brooklyn, NY 11231
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