A partner school to Patterson Park Public Charter school in Southeast Baltimore, Clay Hill Public Charter School (CHPCS) will open in Fall 2020 with a mission to empower the school community through a whole-child approach in a diverse, community-centered learning environment to be stewards of an equitable future.
CHPCS strives to build lifelong learners, healthy families and strong neighborhoods.
The CHPCS curriculum reflects the best practices at Patterson Park Public Charter School while also reflecting the identities, interests, and needs of the unique CHPCS student body.
• Interdisciplinary and Thematic Instruction
CHPCS will use a motivating learning model that teaches the same theme to create meaningful connections across subject areas. For example, in 5th grade, students will learn about the American Revolution in social studies while reading historical fiction from the same era in language arts. And in 3rd grade, students will study the Chesapeake Bay in social studies class and then illustrate algae blooms and draw crabs from real life examples in art class. At CHPCS students will be engaged in their own learning by pursuing their own interests and having choice about how they find answers and solve problems. The curriculum will promote a love of learning through additional instruction in art, music, physical education, Spanish, and community service.
• Cross-Curricular and Community-Based Learning
Instruction at CHPCS will aim to engage every type of learner by using hands-on and real-world learning experiences. We believe that when students can apply what they are learning to real life, it is more authentic and engaging. We see our neighborhoods and Baltimore City as living classrooms and take advantage of all they have to offer. For example, in 6th grade math, students will participate in an “Aquarium Design Challenge” where they apply lessons about surface area of three-dimensional shapes from math class to engineering concepts studied in science. In 4th grade, students will visit and explore the Luray Caverns in Luray, Virginia after studying stalagmites and stalactites in their science geology unit and creating them through a baking soda experiment.
Students will partner with Audubon in the city’s green spaces, take quarterly field trips to local museums, historical sites, and theater productions, and travel to the Appalachian Mountains and abroad. And classrooms will welcome artists in residence, local architects, and professionals from many different fields to share their learning and expertise with our students.
• Social/Emotional Education
Character education is a central element of our mission. CHPCS is a Tribes Learning Community. Tribes is a step-by-step process to achieve inclusion and influence in our school community. Students learn a set of collaborative skills so they can work well together. The four agreements honored by Tribes at CHPCS are:
1. Attentive Listening
2. Appreciation/ No Put-Downs
3. Mutual Respect
4. Right to Pass
Each classroom at CHPCS will provide opportunities for student collaboration and teamwork on tasks. Student desks and tables will be situated in groups, and student-to-student interaction will be a core element of learning.