The beginning of every school year kicks off with a fun and engaging all-school project. Students are placed in groups of kids that span from the youngest students in the building to the oldest and are challenged to explore a special topic or theme in a hands-on, 跨学科的方法. Recent themes include Forests, Sustainability, Community, and Rube Goldberg. During Opening Group Skills Week kids quickly get to know one another, become accustomed to learning collaboratively, develop an immediate sense of togetherness and belonging.
Second semester always begins with our entire school traveling (virtually) for a week together to a different country to experience the history, 地理位置, 语言, 食物, 传统, 故事, 舞蹈, 音乐, 体育, 货币, day-to-day lives of people in another part of the world. This is yet another opportunity for all age groups to mix and work together. Countries recently investigated are Cuba, Turkey, Ireland, Brazil, China, India, Senegal, Spain.
Staff and parents share their passion for cooking and baking with our students on a regular basis using our state-of-the-art teaching kitchen. In addition to the great aromas and delicious 食物s that result, 孩子们正在学习现实生活中的数学, 科学, reading and developing life-long skills in meal preparation and healthy eating habits.
Our students work in multi-aged groups practicing the skills of cooking based upon a theme. We have explored the cuisines of a single country; cooked our way through the alphabet focusing on breads or rice dishes; allowed our students to pick monthly themes such as 食物s of Philadelphia, 巧克力, 意大利面, Easter/Passover 食物s; and cooked only with what is locally available throughout the school year. In addition, cooking is woven into academic studies whenever relevant. Through our cooking adventures our students expand their palates, 学习食物的历史, become able to read and follow recipes to create meals.
Since experiential education is foundational to our program, it is not uncommon to find our students outside both the classroom and school—investigating and constructing meaning in tangible, 真实的场景.
We educate our students about the richness of religious, 少数民族, cultural and philosophical diversity in our community through sharing of various celebrations. Parents/caregiverss are encouraged to share the 传统 of their families with their child’s group. We celebrate diversity through participation in our classroom festivities and homemade assemblies. Every attempt is made to be both inclusive and non-offensive in these celebrations, we refine what is included according to the sensitivities of the Project Learn Community.
自1980年以来每年举办一次, guests are invited to observe morning classes, share refreshments and watch performances staged by Groups including short plays, 诗歌朗诵, songs and a preview of the spring 音乐al.
PLS has a long history in teaching journalism with its first student newspaper published in 1978. Students continue this tradition until this day, 一年出版两卷. Students generate 故事 they think are interesting and current, learn how to write ‘fat’ questions, interview people who are connected to the article, 然后写一篇文章. Staff teach students how to edit and help the students rewrite the articles so they sound and read coherently.
8th Grade Costa Rica Service Learning Trip
Every year our graduating Junior High class takes part in an international community service project in Costa Rica. This trip takes our students outside the classroom and engages them in real world projects starting with fundraising events and culminating in a one-week community service project in Costa Rica. 往年, we have worked closely with our sister community to rebuild a community center, 创作细致的壁画, rehabilitate an elementary school.
Every Spring PLS showcases our very energetic and talented older elementary and Junior High youth in a full-fledged 音乐al complete with lighting, 集, 服装和, 当然, singing and dancing at the Cheltenham Center for the Arts. 音乐剧包括 你是个好人，查理·布朗, 奥利弗, 小美人鱼.
Each Spring, our Junior High students invest time and energy into the PLS 科学展览. 在决定了他们的话题之后, students work through the scientific process of research, 实验设计, data collection and drawing conclusions. Students then present their experiments and conclusions to the entire school. These projects encompass all academic disciplines and challenge students to become the teachers as they endeavor to explain their work to our youngest students.
A highly anticipated event every winter is our Junior High one-day ski trip to Jack Frost Mountain in the Poconos. This has been a tradition at our community for at least twenty years.
Our year ends with an overnight camping trip for the entire school community.