As we continue to explore Middle School at BIM, I met with Riya ’27 to spend a day in her shoes and talk about transitioning to middle school at BIM! Riya and her twin brother, Ronit, came to BIM in grade 6 and quickly joined the Student Ambassador Program. Riya enjoys the freedom to look more deeply into topics that peek her interest – both inside and outside of the classroom. She particularly likes that BIM encourages students to start new clubs and enjoys being involved on campus.
Here Riya shared a typical school day in grade 7 and more details about the support that students receive as they transition to BIM.
What better way to learn about Middle School at BIM than from a current student! Naina ’28 enjoys being part of the BIM community, especially the relationships that she has built with fellow students and teachers. She loves BIM so much that she became a student ambassador. While BIM is a school focused on building a supportive community, students in the BIM Student Ambassador Program take an active role in sharing our school and their experience with prospective and admitted families.
In this blog, I follow Naina through a day at BIM and ask her what makes BIM unique. At BIM, each period is 50 minutes with a 5-minute passing period before and afterwards. The day includes 8 periods with one period being a combination of lunch and an advisory period in the middle school years.
In March and April, students in primary, middle, and high school competed and were recognized in state science competitions.
Whether you are in the midst of a school search or just starting to consider a transition, changing schools is a life-altering decision for your child and for your family. Each year, we see a large number of families, coming from both private and public schools, questioning if they should apply in grade 5 versus waiting until grade 6. Seeing a recent increase in this question, I decided to dedicate a blog focused on the benefits of transitioning into the BASIS Curriculum in grade 5.
At BASIS Independent McLean (BIM), middle school begins in grade 5, and middle school can be an exciting time in a student’s academic journey. By surrounding your child with other students who are engaged and enthusiastic learners and placing them in classrooms led by dynamic and knowledge expert teachers, your child can work with an advanced curriculum and recognize their full potential.
What does it take to build life-long skills of self-advocacy and independence?
At BASIS Independent Schools, our educational philosophy is centered around student autonomy and self-advocacy. We want to empower our students when they come to school each day; to do so, we believe students need to learn to exercise their autonomy, which allows them to take greater control of their education.
“It makes a huge difference to have teachers who are passionate about the subjects they are teaching in every class. It makes you more excited to learn!” –Sophie, BASIS Independent McLean
BASIS Independent Schools raises the standards of student learning to the highest international levels through our advanced, globally benchmarked curriculum. However, our schools are only able to achieve such incredible outcomes thanks to our passionate expert teachers—not just because they teach with expertise, but because each one inspires students to truly love learning. Good luck asking any of our students who their favorite teacher or class is; they will usually answer, “all of them!”
When our students enter the Middle School Program in grade 5 at BASIS Independent Schools, they leave behind the two-teacher model that defines grades 1–4 and are solely led by Subject Expert Teachers (SETs). Focused on high-level mastery, SETs are the shepherds of academic content; they have real-life experience in the discipline they teach, and often even hold advanced degrees in the field.
Last weekend, our Theatre transformed into a humble home in Massachusetts during a Christmas season (and beyond) of the American Civil War. The students of the BASIS Independent McLean Drama Club became the cast of Little Women, a play by Scott Davidson that is adapted from Louisa Mae Alcott's classic novel. It tells the coming-of-age story during the Civil War of the four March sisters--Meg, Jo, Beth, and Amy--as told by Jo. In addition to acting, students also ran the light board and managed the stage.
Humor can be found in any subject, but you can find it daily in Mr. Calhoun’s science and math classes. He loves using humor, especially bad puns, in his classrooms to engage the students. “Math puns are the first sine of madness,” he says with a laugh.
Middle school is a time of substantial transition—academically and emotionally—for students as they leave the more nurturing elementary years and begin their preparation for high school and beyond. Because these years are filled with increasingly complex content, it is critical for students to build and fortify their foundational knowledge across a wide variety of disciplines.
This is the first in a three-part blog series that will provide an in-depth look into the BASIS Independent Middle School Program, which is designed to ready students with the knowledge, confidence, and independence needed to excel inside and outside the classroom, as well as provide them ample opportunity to discover their passions. This first blog post will focus specifically on the BASIS Curriculum in the middle school years, which has been honed and optimized to reflect today’s growing expectations in education.
As we prepare to announce our 2020 national and internationally faculty led trips, we are taking a look back at our 2019 Project Week trip to Madagascar!
Inspired by the blissful feeling of uncovering connections, our blog Eureka! McLean is about sharing moments that capture the essence of what it is to be a BASIS Independent student, teacher, administrator, or family.