Progressive education places students at the center of their own learning. This is why at Wildwood we integrate the critical component of reflective practice into every child’s school experience.
At the elementary level, students have opportunities throughout the year to present and celebrate their work with family and friends at exhibitions and student-led conferences. For middle and upper school students, portfolios contain samples from each subject area, illustrating growth and mastery through a series of progressively challenging assignments.
All Wildwood students engage in reflective practice in all aspects of their education—whether involved in peer-editing, preparing for their conference or Gateway, or debriefing a classroom discussion, event or presentation. Reflecting and then revising and refining become part of the daily conversation for students and for teachers.
A rubric is a chart of clearly delineated expectations that guide students’ work. Each rubric is based on the seven Habits of Mind and Heart, providing the structure for student work and a tool for teachers to evaluate student progress. Both student and teachers understand that rubrics will be used as guideposts for accountability and benchmarks for assessments.
Wildwood uses narrative assessments to provide a clear and deep understanding of a student’s progress in each subject area. They function in place of letter grades, except during the college application process in upper school, when they are converted to grade point averages. These written reports review strengths in meeting expectations and identify areas needing further development. They become the basis for goal setting for future learning, and are the catalyst for a fluid and ongoing conversation about the student’s varied interests, strengths, stretches, and abilities. Family conferences are also part of the assessment process. Narrative assessments prepare students for a lifelong practice of developing creative expectations, authentic self-evaluation, and thoughtful course-correction when needed.