- My children received an absolute love of learning, a trust that comes from working with smart, caring adults, and an acute awareness and appreciation of global culture. My daughters left the Homestead with an understanding of their place in the world and a quiet confidence that it is open and available to them. (Melissa Holden, parent)
- With an inspirational staff that sees and meets the needs of each student and an emphasis on self and social responsibility, the Homestead Middle School program produces graduates remarkable for their poise, maturity, and intellectual curiosity. My son entered high school relishing the challenge and well prepared to meet it. (Mary Keller, parent)
- The curriculum was rigorous and thought-provoking, the teachers inspiring and supportive, and the community was second to none. Our daughter left the Homestead confident and supremely prepared for high school, and in many ways, college. We can’t thank The Homestead enough. (Kaja Gula-Thomas, parent)
- We saw a dramatic increase in our children’s writing skills and their mathematics which put them well above their peers when they left Homestead for high school. And now, our kids have been accepted to several of the top schools in the country. (Michael Mundy, parent)
12 – 14 Years
“If puberty is on the physical side a transition from an infantile to an adult state, there is also, on the psychological side, a transition from the child who has to live in a family, to the adult who has to live in society. These two needs of the adolescents: for protection during the time of the difficult physical transition, and for an understanding of the society which they are about to enter to play their parts.” – Maria Montessori
The Homestead Middle School Program embraces the creative power of the adolescent. To support this transitional period into adulthood the Homestead offers a rich curriculum that centers on understanding oneself and one’s relationship with the world. A year long rite of passage program for the 8th grade students creates a space for encouraging and celebrating the growth of this time in life. Students are supported in finding multiple avenues for serving their community, both local and global. A year long business project fosters the creative and entrepreneurial spirit, with the goal of raising funds for a cause of the student’s choosing. Through the inspiration of special guest speakers, trips off campus, and collaborative projects, middle school students find that they can be effective agents of change in their communities.
Academics in the middle school help to prepare students for the transition to traditional as well as alternative high schools. Advanced work is available to support students with accelerated placement in high school courses. At this age, a great focus is made on refining one’s ability to express oneself, through the fine arts, the written and spoken word, and digital projects. Project-based science allows students to investigate and learn as scientists do, by observing, designing and carrying out experiments, building and using models, and constructing scientific explanations. Thematic studies engage students in real world issues, asking them to grapple with difficult questions that have no clear answers, but which are best approached with an understanding derived from their years as Montessori students. This includes their knowledge of Big History, the cosmic story that is fundamental to the Montessori approach; the empathy developed from years of learning in a social environment; and the ability for deep collaborative exchange.
The Homestead Middle School offers a makers space including two 3D printers, a laser cutter, a large format photo printer, and tools for woodworking and circuitry. We offer an elective program to 7th graders which not only develops skills in a particular trade, but sets the groundwork for the 8th grade business project. Electives are taught by experts in the field. Offerings have included fiction writing, songwriting, ceramics, printmaking, meditation, sewing, jewelry making, advanced fiber arts, martial arts, and organic farming.