school of environmental studies

Academic Houses

The academic house is both the physical and philosophical division of the school into smaller communities. Each of four houses is made up of about one hundred students in either grade 11 or 12. Two houses are for juniors, two for seniors. The house meets for one-half of each student day.

During house-time the subjects of Language Arts (English and communications), environmental science, and social studies are applied to the study of complex issues related to the environment. Some of the work is highly content-specific while larger studies are of an interdisciplinary nature.

House is scheduled by the staff based on the needs of the day. Sometimes three, one hour classes in each discipline area are needed to deepen understanding of some new concepts. Other times a combination of small group and large group sessions will enhance the likelihood of students making abstract connections between subject matter.

Each House is Divided Into Ten Pods
The house is divided into ten pods. These ten pods surround the center of the house on three sides. This center serves as a meeting space, divided classroom, work area, and in other functions as needed by the students and staff.

The Pod Contains About Ten Students
Each pod has desks for the students (typically ten) in that pod. These desks have a writing surface, a lockable drawer and a tackable surface on which to place pictures and such. Along with two large wardrobes, this workspace becomes the student’s home at school. The building has no lockers.