Advisory is one of the core aspects of our school. The value we place on Advisory is built into our schedule with Advisory meeting everyday for 45 minutes--sometimes twice a day. It is through Advisory that we create and promote the essential elements of our school culture and the socio-emotional safety required for students to learn and thrive. Students in Advisory participate in discussions, activities, and leadership opportunities that allow them to understand and practice RISEUP and other skills that prepare them for participation in the school community and the world beyond our walls.
The four elemental pieces of our Advisory program are:
These focuses are tied into the Advisory curriculum, which is created in-house by members of the faculty, throughout the year. Emphasis on the different elements is provided with consideration to student grade-level, time of year, and student needs within each Advisory. For example, sixth graders focus quite a bit on community building and academic excellence at the beginning of the school year. This sets a foundation for the rest of the year and builds the sense of community needed to help students delve into discussions and development of social & emotional wellness and multicultural practice.
Additionally, Advisory is where academic and behavioral interventions start. The Advisor plays a key role in getting to know students and finding ways to support them at City. Once a week, the Advisory curriculum focuses exclusively on academics by providing a study hall with one-on-one check-ins, a lesson on organization strategies, silent reading, or some other activity centered on boosting student academic performance. In addition to the academic piece, Advisory traditions such as circle, birthday appreciations, trips, and monthly service jobs, allow the Advisor to get to know students outside of the typical academic setting and to spot the needs of students that go beyond the surface. Through these activities, students are taught and given opportunities to self-advocate and support peers around relevant middle school issues.
Advisory sets the groundwork at The City School for all academic, social, and emotional work to be accomplished.