Comprehensive Curriculum

Our curriculum is designed to develop students’ ability to think critically and creatively, collaborate with others, communicate clearly, merge knowledge from different disciplines, adapt technical skills to diverse needs and solve complex problems. Each term, students further develop these competencies while gaining exposure to a variety of themes and issues.

Learning Blocks

Each term is composed of three main Learning Blocks: Studios, Seminars and Supplemental Coursework.

Studios

At the heart of NuVu’s curriculum are studios, a series of 3-4 week immersive interdisciplinary projects. In a typical trimester, a student will participate in two different studios. Each trimester ends with an open innovation period during which students have the freedom to dig deeper into a topic of particular interest from earlier in the term.
Studios designed for younger students focus on developing foundational skills and creative confidence. As students learn to navigate open-ended problems, collaborate effectively, build empathy for others and communicate their ideas effectively using a variety of media, studios become more sophisticated. This process eventually prepares each student to complete a 12th grade Capstone Project on a topic of their choosing.
Each year, the NuVu team develops a new assortment of studios that connect with the relevant issues and challenges of our time. Here are some examples of recent studios:

Seminars

Seminars meet once per week and last for an entire trimester. They cover topics that students have expressed interest in learning more about. Through reading, writing and discussion, seminars allow NuVu students to explore topics that extend and inform each year’s studios.

Fall 2021 Seminars:

Equity & Technology
Famous U.S. Trials
Creative Algorithms

Supplemental Coursework

In order to ensure that all NuVu students have a well-rounded foundation in traditional disciplines, we integrate supplemental coursework into the overall academic program. Two blocks per week are devoted to this work, allowing our students to take accredited academic courses through specialized online providers and with support from NuVu’s coaches.

NuVu’s academic advisors work with each student to craft a personalized multi-year plan based on that student’s particular academic goals. Most NuVu students apply to highly selective colleges, and our team ensures that those students have met all of the expectations to be very attractive candidates for acceptance at those institutions.

Sample Four-Year Supplemental Coursework:

9th: Algebra 2, English 9, Earth Science
10th: Geometry, English 10, Biology
11th: Precalculus, English 11, Chemistry
12th: Calculus, English 12, Physics

Sample Weekly Schedule

Our schedule provides focused blocks of time for students to work on their studio projects and also includes specific blocks for seminars and supplemental coursework.

Calendar

The first day of school is September 8, 2021.
The last day of school is June 8, 2022.

NuVu follows a trimester schedule with three terms during the academic year.

Fall Term: Wednesday, September 8, 2021 - Friday, November 19, 2021
Winter Term: Monday, November 29, 2021 - Thursday, March 3, 2022
Spring Term: Monday, March 7, 2022 - Wednesday, June 8, 2022

Student Assessment

NuVu’s core values are reflected in the way that we assess students, with the emphasis on individual student growth. As a result, in place of traditional letter grades, students receive regular feedback about their progress toward mastery in five competency areas:

Creative Mindset
Personal Growth
Critical Communication
Critical Framing
Essential Making Techniques

NuVu’s School Profile provides more information about our students, our school, and our assessment.
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I always feel lucky that we found NuVu, but especially this year. So many high school students we know have had disappointing semesters, whereas the academic programming at NuVu has been both rigorous and engaging. She’s learned a tremendous amount this school year – and she’s felt challenged by and enjoyed the process. Thank you!
Laura J
NuVu Parent ’20