Wooster’s Upper School builds on the foundation of Middle School, opening students to a bigger world where they increasingly assume ownership and responsibility for their own learning.
By design, our program is built around tapping into students’ and teachers’ natural interests and curiosities, creating authentic motivation for learning.
Diane Martin, EdD
Director of Divisions
Joined Wooster in 2019-2020
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Helping them along the way, we require students to participate and lead Parent-Student-Teacher Conferences, twice a year. By doing so, they learn to speak about and advocate for themselves, and how to take ownership of their own education and life.
Through Wooster School’s Deep Learning Initiative (DLI), students pursue a greater understanding of concepts in our academic disciplines by engaging in a learning experience based upon best practices and our growing understanding of brain science and learning.
DLI are Wooster's most rigorous courses, created by our talented faculty and built around the interests of our students. At the heart of DLI are tutorial methodologies which provide the framework for a deeper dive into each course’s concepts and meaning. Far more flexible and inspiring than Advanced Placement, DLI pushes students to find their own voice and be creative in the pursuit of sophisticated, original thought.
Deep Learning Initiative
Upper School Course of Study
Learn more about our course descriptions and requirements.
What is Embedded Honors?
Beginning in 9th grade, many of our courses offer an opt-in, embedded honors component for motivated students who want to dig deeper. Rather than place students into distinct “honors” or “non-honors” class sections at course registration, all students learn together and have the opportunity to access the honors curriculum, if they choose to do so.
Putting Learners at the Center
Embedded honors is rooted in Wooster’s learner-centered ethos. Every student can seize the opportunity to cultivate agency and independence while navigating the just-right level of challenge. If successful in completing the additional, honors coursework, students earn honors credit and designation on their transcript, affirming their story to college admission offices. Like all curriculum at Wooster, the honors coursework is built to be flexible and interactive. As such, and because it is not building back from a predetermined test, teachers are able to adapt it in an ongoing way as each cohort of students finds those incredible “aha” moments. Along the way, students work individually and in small groups, receiving frequent and personal feedback from their teachers.
Low Stakes Opportunity
Keeping students at the center of design, embedded honors is designed to incentivize students to try going deeper and not penalize them if they discover it’s not for them. If a student feels that the honors material is too challenging or not of interest to them, they can opt out and instead refocus on the non-honors coursework, with no penalty.