Innovation is a founding principle of the BASIS Curriculum, and our network has some notable innovations for the 2018–19 school year. We wanted to share a few of these endeavors with our families, including a new best practice called SPORK that is rolling out across our network in select math classes, a new approach to content underway at a sister school in our network, and three campuses that opened internationally this year, further extending our global classroom.
SPORK: A great name, and a great new tool for BASIS Curriculum students and teachers. SPORK is our network’s proprietary educational tablet-based software that has been developed to host our BASIS Curriculum math program for Pre-Algebra, Algebra and Geometry I, and (in some schools) Algebra and Geometry II. SPORK also offers useful applications and learning tools to our students and teachers.
- The tablet-based math textbook program is our own BASIS Curriculum math program and will be replacing Saxon for these courses. Eventually, SPORK is likely to expand to other classes and courses in the BASIS Curriculum.
- The tablet-based software offers application features that allow teachers to have greater control over the content. It also allows students to access homework, provide immediate feedback (polling) on their level of understanding of their homework or in-class work, and access useful and school-approved applications, tools, and resources.
The SPORK program is underway at 14 BASIS Curriculum Schools, including BASIS Independent Brooklyn, BASIS Independent Manhattan, and BASIS independent McLean.
Curricular Innovation: Our network is launching an optional new academic endeavor called The Academy at BASIS Independent McLean. This program will eventually include students in grades 8–12, though it will begin with students in grades 8–10 in the 2019–20 school year.
The Academy at BASIS Independent McLean offers students an in-depth study of English and history, taking a text-based, seminar-style, writing-intensive approach. Students who choose this program fulfill humanities requirements specific to The Academy at BASIS Independent McLean, including taking honors history seminars that focus on core primary texts, and taking AP Seminar and AP Research courses that each focus on conducting original research. Students who enroll in the new program continue to take the usual BASIS Curriculum courses outside of the humanities with their BASIS Independent McLean peers, but have their new humanities courses replace the usual AP History and select English requirements.
New International Schools: The BASIS Curriculum Schools network has opened a campus in a third country: the Czech Republic. BASIS Beginners Prague is a school focused on Early Learners in preschool and kindergarten. Next fall, the BASIS Curriculum Schools network will open in a fourth nation: Thailand. BASIS International School Bangkok is already hosting Information Sessions and readying the new campus in the Rama 2 area.
The network also opened our third and fourth schools in China in 2018: BASIS International School Hangzhou (see photo on right), and BASIS International School Park Lane Harbour (see photo below), both of which welcomed students to begin the 2018–19 academic year. There are now five BASIS International Schools, including the newly opened trio of campuses, with a sixth international school in Thailand coming soon.
We are always proud and pleased to share the consistent, purposeful innovations to the BASIS Curriculum and BASIS independent Schools. If you have any questions about these exciting items, please contact Jo Goldfarb.