"New Directions Learning Community will be a unique charter school in the state--with what I believe will be an incredibly effective and innovative approach to teaching--certainly exactly the right approach for a 21st century school." -John Gee, Executive Director - Wisconsin Charter School Association"
NDLC is New Directions Learning Community Charter School – a new public charter school in Kaukauna, Wisconsin. NDLC will provide a unique learning opportunity for elementary school students and their families in Kaukauna and surrounding communities. In our supportive community, students will receive individualized instruction to help them grow as readers, writers, and problem solvers... they will become citizens for our global world.
The vision of the New Directions team is to develop a 4K through 4th grade charter school anchored in research-based best educational practices in all curricular areas. NDLC will utilize the Readers’ and Writers’ Workshop curriculum/methodology developed by Columbia University.
Our Mission Statement
The mission of New Directions is to develop student and teacher leaders. Students will be flexible, analytic, collaborative leaders ready for the demands of the 21st century. Staff will implement the Readers’ and Writers’ Workshop with fidelity across the elementary curricula in order to strengthen and improve the academic performance of the students. The mission also includes sharing the skills and techniques of the Readers’ and Writers’ Workshop with other interested educators inside and outside of the district. NDLC will be a labsite where teachers will model and educate others (teachers within the district, teachers from other districts, and students from surrounding universities in the education program) on the structure and benefits of the workshop. Staff will actively participate in professional development, peer coaching, and collegial study, while collaborating with one another in order to inform future practice and lift the level of student performance. The principal will work in collaboration with teachers to ensure the success of all students.
New Directions Instructional Program
- Development of lifelong readers and thinkers
- Teacher authored curriculum based on current research about teaching and learning from Columbia University, NYC
- Differentiated instruction
- Cooperative, inquiry-based learning
- Literature-rich classroom libraries, daily teacher read-aloud, literature discussions, and writer's workshop at all grade levels
- On-going, rigorous professional development
- Systematic, authentic intervention for readers who struggle
- Integration of technology for student inquiry, publication, and communication
- Hands-on mathematics and science
- The use of the Responsive Classroom Approach to teach social, emotional, and academic growth
- Art, Library Skills, Physical Education, and Music Classes
- Monthly Family Nights
- Seasonal Weekend Family Events
- Parent volunteer support in and outside of the classroom
NDLC's vision is reflected in the physical layout of our classrooms, which are warm, inviting, exciting places to learn. Desks have been exchanged for tables that foster student collaboration and discussion. Every room has its own carefully-selected classroom library to ensure that high quality books are available to students at all times. The walls are alive with student work and class-created charts that support learning. Classroom environments are designed to connect with students and empower them while fostering creativity, inquiry, discussion, and teamwork.
What will I see in an NDLC classroom?
- Students discussing, reading, writing, thinking, exploring, questioning, experimenting, creating, and collaborating
- Teachers facilitating, guiding, challenging, and supporting students in their learning
- Student artwork, poetry, essays, fiction, diagrams, graphs, and projects on the walls
- Engaging classroom libraries stocked with books for all readers
- Comfortable reading nooks with rugs, comfortable seating
- Integration of technology for student learning, inquiry, research, publication, and communication
- Work spaces that foster collaboration
- Supplies for reading, writing, math, science, and social studies clearly organized to support student independence
- Imagination, curiosity, determination, and spirit
- Respect, leadership, friendship, and teamwork
- Learn more about our approach to create a safe, challenging, and joyful school: Visit the Responsive Classroom website
- Social-emotional learning, school climate, and holistic education links: View links from the Responsive Classrom website
- Our hands-on Science approach: Visit The Einstein Project website