North Country School gives children a humanistic education rooted in respect and responsibility for self and others. Central to our academic program is a hands-on, place-based approach founded on the progressive tradition of John Dewey. Math students learn measurement and computer skills by tracking the weights of newborn lambs. Science students study anatomy by reassembling chicken skeletons from birds they harvest. English students write persuasive letters to elected officials about environmental issues they research. Arts students restore rowboats, knit scarves from wool from our own sheep, and create sculptures and murals that decorate our campus.
North Country School founder Walter Clark once said, “North Country School was built on this thought: children need direct experience if they are to grow and learn most effectively.” With the guidance of multitalented teachers, our students go beyond learning-by-doing to knowing-by-doing. In turn, they gain a deeper understanding of themselves and the world around them, while activating a sense of wonder and intellectual curiosity.
Our traditional core curriculum, hands-on projects, and innovative uses of technology help develop critical academic skills in the humanities, math, sciences, and the arts. Intellectual engagement is encouraged through creativity and collaboration, with every student finding academic success as they pursue their own unique talents and interests. Our students experience daily breakthroughs socially, personally, and academically.
While we have high expectations for our students, we recognize that every child learns differently. Learning support services are available. Flexible course placements meet the needs of every student, so every child is challenged according to their own ability.
Nature is the master teacher at North Country School, and the Adirondack wilderness is our living laboratory. Our progressive and immersive education unlocks children’s sense of wonder, intellectual curiosity, and innate creativity.