Twice a year, the regular Middle School curriculum pauses for Intersession, a one-week period when students participate in full-immersion, interdisciplinary studies. Through Intersession, students explore an area of interest outside of their typical academic studies and encounter new experiences, places, people, and ideas that spark what often become lifelong passions. Some Intersessions are offered year after year, while others are newly designed each year to meet students’ unique interests.
While COVID-19 has required some reimagining of Intersessions again this year—more on-campus, small group experiences, less off-campus pursuits—students were fully engaged and able to explore, collaborate, invent, and create during Intersession Week, Oct. 11-14, 2021. Middle School students chose from four Intersession offerings this fall:
Entrepreneurship: In this Intersession, students studied the world of business. They learned how to create a micro-economy, examined how real-world stocks work, studied an array of small business practices, and developed their own small businesses. The week concluded with students pitching their business ideas, Shark Tank-style, to students, faculty, and staff.
- Outdoor Survival: In this Intersession, students took advantage of the 39-acre Brier Creek Campus to learn survival skills and practice outdoor sports and activities. They learned how to build fires, construct shelters, pack emergency kits, read maps and compasses, and cook meals outdoors.
MSR Test Kitchen: Students spent time in the kitchen planning meals, getting groceries, and cleaning up. They gained cooking skills, had some baking battles, created food challenges, tasting competitions, and explored healthy and unhealthy food options. All in all, students built valuable life skills and learned to solve problems creatively.
- Fiber Art: In the Fiber Art Intersession students learned the basic stitches of crochet and knitting while working on some simple and practical projects. Students were also able to devise and create their own original artworks with yarn and other materials.
Intersessions, like other real-life learning experiences at The Montessori School of Raleigh, allow students to develop essential life skills, build competence and confidence, and prepare for success in high school and beyond. Deeply integrated with academic learning in traditional subject areas —Intersessions exemplify the principles of the Third Plane of Development of the Montessori approach as students move from focusing on the “What?” and the “Why?” questions of their early childhood and elementary years to the “How?” questions of adolescence and early adulthood.
For more about the Middle School experience at MSR, visit msr.org at program/middle-school.