Academics at Field

The Field curriculum weaves integrated disciplines of learning throughout a student’s education. Our teachers work together to create project-based learning and cross-discipline learning assignments or units. This practice is beneficial to students by using academic theory in the real world, stretching their comfort zone, developing awareness of global issues, and gaining leadership, teamwork, and communications skills. 

Students are most successful when they use their innate curiosity, take risks in learning, collaborate with peers and teachers, identify the “why” behind their successes and mistakes, and utilize reflective practice. This approach grounds challenging academic content in natural curiosity, allowing each student to make creative connections. We guide students to be agile and flexible thinkers, allowing them to transition seamlessly through their learning at Field and into the world beyond. 

Each day, Field students undertake demanding intellectual pursuits with their teachers and peers, from reading and analyzing classical texts to working with the mathematical concept of symmetry as it relates to music, architecture, human biology, or psychology. Classrooms are about dialogue, inquiry, and critical thinking, and Field students engage in deeply relevant work in their classes. Colleges know our program and its depth well.  We have sent students to a mix of small liberal arts colleges, large state universities, art schools, and Ivy League colleges.

List of 6 items.

  • English

    Literature and Writing: Core to a Field Education

    Making meaning and learning to communicate effectively are essential life skills, and the study of literature and composition--both conceived of in the broadest terms--is central to a Field education. Students at all grade levels take a core English course, which teaches essential skills, provides a common experience and facilitates grade cohesion and connection.

    Emphasis On Skills And Process

    Students learn to read deeply, write well, and engage in purposeful dialogue through in-depth study of literature. While our reading lists change to meet the needs of our students and our evolving cultural context, the core skills of interpretation, analysis, discussion, and collaboration are consistently at the center of the Field English classroom.

    Writing with Purpose

    Our writing curriculum is meant to prepare students to think critically and clearly and to communicate their ideas and experience with precision and flexibility. Field students learn the conventions of many modes and genres of writing and are prepared both for the challenges of writing in college and in their professional pursuits and creative endeavors.

    Identity and Culturally Responsive Practice

    Literature is both a window and a mirror. Field students learn to look for and see themselves in the literature we study, and they develop curiosity for and a desire to know how other people live, think and experience the world. Students learn to recognize where their identities show up and how to communicate across difference.
  • World Languages

    Communication is Key

    At the core our language program is a belief in the value of communication. Language instruction is rooted in helping students express themselves in other languages and in a variety of contexts and modes: in casual conversation, in formal dialogue, and in different modes of academic and creative writing.

    Language and Culture

    Students at Field learn that language is both a product of and shaper of culture. In addition to learning language skills, students learn about the nations, people, and cultures from which our core languages emerged. Students who study language at the highest levels take humanities-style seminars to pursue the study of literature and culture in their chosen target language.

    Emphasis On Skills And Process

    Vocabulary and grammatical structures are essential components of learning a World Language, and at Field these foundational elements are taught in context and through practice and application, not as isolated lists to memorize or rules to follow. Students learn strategies for how to learn Language and get coaching and feedback on their Language learning.

    Meaningful Choice

    Middle school students have the opportunity to experiment with our three core languages (Spanish, French, and Latin) and develop foundational communication and language learning skills. Students have the opportunity to continue their study of that language as they move into high school or to pursue a different language.
  • History

    Understand the Present through the Past

    The world students live in now is complex and interconnected, and we strive to equip them to explore, understand and create change. Students learn to understand how our current world came into being, including how systems of oppression evolved and apply a social justice lens to build a better future.

    Historical Thinking Skills

    Historical thinking skills are broadly relevant and increasingly essential. Students learn to evaluate sources, generate incisive and insightful questions, develop sound, evidence-based arguments, understand and put events into context, and see historical trends and patterns. Critical online reasoning is an essential part of the Field history classroom.

    A Culturally Responsive and Anti-Bias Curriculum

    We investigate and tell stories outside of the dominant historical narratives, and students learn to identify and think critically about those dominant narratives. Students also learn to investigate, craft, and share their own cultural stories.


    Students learn to consider how a story is created, who is afforded space to tell their story, and how storyteller identities shape their stories. We empower students to create their own narratives and to find meaning in and connection to the narratives of others.
  • Mathematics

    Intentional Skill-Building Over Time

    Our students come to us with a variety of backgrounds, experiences and mindsets about Mathematics, and our program is designed to meet students where they are. Our middle school program focuses on numeracy and foundational algebraic, geometric, and problem-solving skills, often through real-world projects. Our upper school program builds on and extends those skills. We don’t just “cover” Mathematical concepts; our students learn to see patterns, make connections, and solve challenging problems.

    Interdisciplinary Connections

    Mathematics and the Sciences are deeply connected, and many of our upper-level Mathematics and Science courses are offered through both departments. In addition, many of our core courses (Chemistry and Algebra 2, for example) build on and reinforce similar supporting skills.

    Communicating Mathematical Ideas 

    Mathematics is elegant and beautiful, and Field students learn to think mathematically and to express mathematical ideas with precision and clarity. This means that, in addition to organized problem solving, students learn to share and explain their thinking (and their mistakes!) verbally and in writing. Field students write about their Mathematical ideas.

    The Chance to Specialize 

    Our Mathematics courses include Calculus and the Advanced Mathematics Seminar. Students may choose to  explore mathematical thinking in statistics and computational thinking (and hardware building!) in Computer Science.
  • Science

    Students as Scientists

    We believe that students learn the sciences by being scientists, so from the beginning of their time at Field we ask students to imagine themselves as scientists and to do the work of scientists. As Biologists, Chemists, Physicists, Field students come to see themselves Scientific thinkers.

    Emphasis On Skills And Process

    Students learn to generate their own questions, form hypotheses, design experiments, collect and analyze data, interpret and visualize results and draw conclusions based on their data. The content of our science courses is vivid and engaging, and is in service of student scientific skill building.

    Real-world Relevance

    We help students see how science matters in their lives and in the world. They investigate the bacteria that grows on their desks (and on their skin!), and they learn to unpack the chemical compounds in the food they eat. They consider the causes of Climate Change--and develop and propose possible solutions and adaptations.

    The Chance to Specialize 

    Our Science courses include challenging upper-level electives like Advanced Biology and Advanced Chemistry, but we also offer students the opportunity to study the natural world and our place in it in Environmental Science, to investigate how our minds works in Psychology and to study the history of science in Scientific Narratives.
  • Studio


    An Integral Part of the Curriculum

    Our studio arts program is an essential component of the whole curriculum and creates a space where students can approach their learning in a different way during the day. Studio classes, required for every student in the school, meet daily and give students the ability to explore different forms of self-expression through student-centered teaching and hands-on learning.

    Emphasis on Exhibition

    Every student is asked to present their work each year through various performances, exhibitions, and publications. By engaging with the community outside the classroom, students are challenged to strengthen their confidence as artists and thinkers, demonstrate the knowledge and skills they have gained, and honor the individual voices of all members in their community. 

    Hands-on Teachers

    All of our studio art teachers are practitioners in their field—potters, musicians, actors/directors, photographers, and the like. In the classroom, they teach by working with students who are doing rather than just listening. Because many of our teachers are practicing artists, they are able to inspire our students by working alongside them, modeling their own successes and failures throughout the creative process.

    The Impact of Art on Learning

    From the beginnings of our school, we have believed—and we have seen proof—that students who take time every day to express themselves artistically and to exercise a different part of their brain and heart are also more successful in math, history, English, science, and foreign languages. Through the mastery of an artistic discipline, students develop transferable skills—such as problem-solving, collaboration, and the ability to clearly articulate ideas—that they can apply to all aspects of their lives.