Students research, design, and engineer

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The Workshop Independent School is an independent middle | micro | maker school for diverse students and families in Brooklyn, New York.

We believe that academic content should be more advanced and more engaging. But there’s a problem! Traditional instruction limits student learning and stifles student interest.

We wonder: what if middle school were different?

Our school is specifically designed to match natural adolescent abilities, interests, and needs — because middle school should be built for middle schoolers!

Why middle?

Because middle school matters. Research explains that student performance in middle school has a more significant impact on forward academic achievement than “anything that happens academically in high school.”

Adolescence can be confusing and complicated. Middle school shouldn’t be. Everything about our school is specifically designed to match students’ natural abilities, interests, and challenges.

Why micro?

Because small schools dramatically increase strengths and supports for students. In fact, research explains that the impact of small schools is “particularly important in the middle grades” when students struggle to understand more complex academic content and navigate more complicated social relationships.

As a microschool, The Workshop designs innovative learning programs that match students’ academic interests and socioemotional needs.  Students who feel more confident and more secure are also more engaged, more motivated, and more resilient.

Why maker?

Middle school education should encourage passionate learning. Active, engaged students are significantly more likely to learn challenging content and skills. Malcolm Gladwell explains: “Much of what we are told we simply don’t remember.”

Maker learning is an active, hands-on approach to education that helps students acquire the academic skills and learning habits necessary to support continued achievement.  Students develop thrillingly large projects (like building a sailboat) connected to advanced academic skills  (like physics).

Why diversity and equity?

New York City schools are heavily segregated by race and socioeconomic class.  In fact, a recent study found that New York City has the “highest concentration of intensely segregated schools” in the United States.

We believe that everyone is better when everyone is together. In fact, research demonstrates that diverse social groups are more accurate, more creative, and more productive.

Every child deserves a challenging, engaging, and meaningful education — every single day.

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