Crestmont’s recently established middle school offers an exciting and unique alternative to the typical middle school experience. With our small class sizes, mixed-age groupings and strong, inclusive community, our middle schoolers receive the necessary social and emotional support to help guide them through these years of big transitions. Having their emotional needs met allows them more space to focus on their scholastic interests and developing new academic skills. Our middle school couples this emotional/social support with an emphasis on learning through hands-on, real life experiences, such as through internships and field studies. Through this experiential learning, students are able to capture and explore their budding interests and feel a real connection to their community and to their futures. This allows them to enter high school with a greater sense of who they are, and feelings of ownership, enthusiasm and pride for their education.
Middle School is a time of intense growth – physically, socially, emotionally, and cognitively. It is a critical phase in the development of children’s sense of themselves and their relationships to the world. The essential questions of the middle school child are: Who am I? What gifts do I bring to my community? How can I make a difference? To answer these questions, students need to tackle genuine problems which hold deep meaning and be part of a trusted community of peers. To reach their enormous potential, middle schoolers require respectful mentoring and a solid academic foundation for high school and college.
Visit the classrooms and you will see teachers balancing direct instruction with cooperative learning and taking an interdisciplinary, project-based approach which ensures that students are mastering the skills and content taught. This project work provides students with ample opportunities to discover their passions and engage deeply with the world around them.
A Crestmont middle schooler may be found on a backpacking trip in Northern California, teaching science lessons to their kindergarten buddy, or facilitating a class seminar on a subject of their choosing. They might be editing an online school magazine, interning with a local graphic designer or chemist, or leading elementary students on a naturalist hike through Wildcat Canyon. They could be teaching an afterschool chess class, writing poetry and performing it at a poetry slam in a local coffee shop, or designing and creating a mural for the Crestmont campus.
8th Grade Student Testimonials
Shiloh: I think we can both agree that the schools we went to before were not the best. Before I came to Crestmont, my middle school experience was not ideal because I was very unhappy at that school.. Being [at Crestmont] gave me the best middle school year that I’ve had, and I’m happy I decided to join the school. I wouldn’t have had such a positive eighth grade experience if it weren’t for the staff and teachers… Something that makes Crestmont so beneficial to the class is that the teachers are emotionally invested in the well-being of their students. We are so thankful for the opportunities that Crestmont has given us and we will miss this place a lot. The teachers at Crestmont have been wonderful and I have learned so much from them.
Lia: Being able to attend Crestmont has been a privilege that we are grateful for. Not only is it a great school academically, but it’s also a community with a welcoming and caring social environment.