Dear SCS Community,
As I reflect back on the first half of our (snowy!) year, I’m again amazed at what we’ve accomplished thanks to our dedicated staff, students and parents. Being part of a charter school is no easy task: we receive half the amount per student that a regular public school receives, work twice as hard to grow our school and yet still manage to give our students a quality education through arts integration.
As an arts integrated school, our goal is not to make great artists or musicians, but to make great people out of our students. We believe that if children make art and music when they are young, they not only become more creative thinkers and problem solvers, they develop respect and compassion for other people, discipline, and endurance.
Our second grade class has been studying Japanese culture and art in social studies. They’ve learned a little Japanese language and explored how Japanese culture and daily life compare to those of the U.S. After learning about the importance of Mount Fuji as a Japanese national symbol and taking a close look at Japanese artist Katsushika Hokusai's famous Views of Mount Fuji, students created their own paintings of Mount Fuji and wrote poems to accompany them. Several other art projects including carp kites, origami, miniature zen gardens, cherry tree paintings, and maneki neko collages have given the students the opportunity to creatively connect with their knowledge about Japanese culture. In writing, our second graders have also been studying poetry, specifically the haiku:
A black cloud of ash
Shooting at the bright blue sky
Lava racing down
~Seacoast Charter School Second Grade Student
Creative thinking, problem solving, respect, compassion, discipline and endurance: these traits are also aligned with the Seacoast Qualities that our middle school students chose as the cornerstones of our school on their team building trip to Merrowista this past November: Respect, Support, Perseverance and Creative Freedom. Each week, the SQ (Seacoast Qualities) award is given to a middle school student in each classroom: the student who held the title the previous week chooses a student who exhibited the SQ’s, explains why this person was chosen in front of the middle school and gives that student the SQ medallion for the week. This ritual has become an important part of our weekly Friday middle school meeting.
These examples are aligned with the mission of the Seacoast Charter School: to provide excellence in core academics and the arts while cultivating the individual qualities and strengths of each child. At the Seacoast Charter School, arts and academics go hand in hand. We believe that the arts bring us joy, and when we feel joy, we learn more deeply and effectively. Through a rich and varied arts program, our students learn to look closely, listen carefully, respond thoughtfully and work collaboratively. Opportunities for creative expression and independent thinking are an integral part of our rigorous academic program. The combination of challenging intellectual and artistic endeavors develops our students’ hearts and minds and enables them to live more fully in the world.
Tell your friends and family to please come visit our learning community! We hold monthly Spotlight on Learning tours on the third Wednesday of every month at 9 AM. We invite everyone from educators, to business and community leaders, to parents of prospective students to come. The conversation and tour will give you a chance to see the school in action, hear from school staff and parents, and ask questions.
Head of School