Middle School Overview
The Middle School at The Masters School provides a tremendous learning experience. The academic program is engaging, exciting and challenging, pushing young people to stretch their talents and intellect. Our educational philosophy sets us apart from other schools. Fifth grade boys and girls learn together in small groups, while grades six through eight learn in single-gender classes - an optimal learning environment for middle school children. Throughout all four years in the Middle School, students participate in hands-on projects and intensive class discussions that help build critical and creative thinking skills. Our exceptional teachers also distinguish us. They genuinely enjoy working with adolescents and utilize teaching techniques and curricula that are particularly successful with middle schoolers. Discover more about Masters distinctive program on this website but I also encourage you to visit and experience for yourself what makes a Masters education so rewarding for our students.
The Masters School celebrates active participation, deep understanding, and meaningful connection. A community of diverse individuals, we gather to learn, to strive, to dare, to do - to be a power for good in the world.
We believe that students learn best when they construct their own meanings. This belief is reflected in the architecture of the classroom itself: the Harkness table gathers students and teachers to build knowledge and learn from one another. Our students practice communication and thinking skills by developing and supporting their ideas, listening carefully to others, working collaboratively, and sharing feedback. In the process, they come to understand their own approaches to learning and value those of others. This group experience fosters a sense of collective responsibility, an appreciation of others, and a feeling of accomplishment in creating something unique and profound.
We believe that our environment must inspire students to strive to be their best selves -- in academic, athletic, artistic, and all other endeavors. In working to achieve their goals, students learn to persevere. A community-wide focus on growth enables them to navigate challenges and become resourceful, confident, and resilient.
We believe that we must empower students to dare - to wonder, to question what is known, and to explore what is unknown. Our culture of kindness and inclusivity applauds students who take risks, learn from setbacks, and gain new perspectives.
We believe that learning is doing. We ask our students to be more than consumers of content -- we ask them to use what they learn to solve problems and design new visions for the world and their place in it. For our students, learning is experiential, and experience shapes learning.
To Be a Power for Good in the World
When Eliza B. Masters founded The Masters School in 1877, she set out to educate each student “to be a power for good in the world." Today, we continue to hold this mission as central to everything we do. As our students contend with real-world issues both in and out of the classroom, they gain empathy, confidence, and a sense of responsibility to fulfill Miss Masters’ most important mission.
Our Middle School engages children in grades five through eight in a learning experience that enables them to reach their full and unique potential. The fifth grade provides a highly interactive co-educational learning experience: grades sixth through eight are taught in single-gender classrooms - an optimal learning environment for boys and girls.
At each grade level, faculty members work in teams to implement a comprehensive academic program around a central theme. This helps students recognize the context and relevance of what they’re learning and greatly enriches their learning experience.
All Middle School students are matched with a faculty advisor at the beginning of every academic year. The advisor—usually a grade-level teacher—advocates on behalf of students as they navigate academic and social challenges. In small groups, advisors discuss issues related to friendship, leadership, stewardship, self-image, popular media, and decision-making. Consistent with our single-gender learning model, the advisory program is led by the Dean for Girls and Dean for Boys.
We believe it is important that children see how their lessons relate to the real world outside the classroom. So at every grade level, The Masters School incorporates field trips that bring learning to life. In the middle school years, adventures include many enriching opportunities with some examples listed below:
- Sloop Clearwater
- Ellis Island
- Metropolitan Museum of Art
- Lincoln Center Backstage Tours
- The Lower East Side Tenement Museum
- Hudson River Museum
- Museum of Chinese in the Americas
- “Bodies” Exhibit at South Street Seaport
- Challenger Space Museum
- Westchester Forensics Lab
- Philadelphia History Tour
- Phillipsburg Manor
- Stony Point Battlefield
- Sunnyside (Washington Irving’s Home)
- Seining in the Hudson River
- Canoeing on Constitution Marsh
- Bird Watching Trips