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From the Head of School Category Archive

January Musings: Habits of Mind for the Future

“Allow for the possibility that the best stuff is still ahead of you, waiting to reveal itself. Prepare the way, bit by bit.” -Lin-Manuel Miranda The habits of mind common to January is best embodied in the figure of its namesake, Janus, the two-headed figure of classical renown. One gaze is oriented to the past,

Baker and You: What is Your Story?

Baker and You: What is Your Story? This fall I have had the pleasure to meet with so many new-to-Baker families, hear their stories and learn how their transition is going. Our new families are a diverse cohort from Chicago, Evanston, Wilmette and surrounding areas, each with their own story about what initially drew them to
Middle School girl in chemistry class

Making a Better World: Nurturing a Child’s Love of Science

  Children are natural scientists: they are curious about how the world works; they ask big questions; and, they find great joy in observing the natural world. All students should enter classrooms where this natural proclivity toward science is integrated into the curriculum. Yet often when children go to school, their love of science diminishes. Students

Design Thinking: Helping Children Approach Problems

“It’s Optimistic. Design Thinking is the fundamental belief that we all can create change—no matter how big a problem, how little time or how small a budget.” -Design Thinking for Educators Toolkit As I shared in my Back to School Night welcome, our theme for this 2019-2020 school year at Baker is Design. Each year

How to Have an Awesome Year. 2019

On this first day of school, I walked through Baker classrooms where I observed a group of preschoolers  busily creating a meal in the outdoor kitchen, while another group talked about the food they were making by rolling, cutting, and shaping clay. Our 4th graders were planning an afternoon exploration to the lake – complete

Fall Reading

Many children walk into the red doors of Baker each morning with a book clasped in their hands. I love hearing from the them about the books they are reading – from Greta’s Elephant and Piggy books to Milo’s The Mysterious Benedict Society. There is something especially wonderful about reading in fall. The cooler air

Four Ways Parents Can Support Our School

Kindergarten students reading Piggy and Gerald together during morning choice time   One of the best parts about Baker is the committed, engaged community of parents who go the extra mile to support the school. More than 100 parents attended our September Back-to-School Night/ State-of-the-School events. During these recent gatherings and throughout the summer, parent

Adventurous Teaching: Taking Science to the Next Level

Baker teachers are a curious, adventurous group. In this centennial year, teacher orientation week began with this question: How can we design an integrated science study for the whole school that engages students in a real-world problem and engages students with field study and community partnerships? Four Baker teams head out into the city for

A Message from Dan Schwartz: Elections, Compassion, and Community

Dear Baker Community, In the aftermath of a divisive electoral season and historic election, we understand how essential it is for parents, teachers, and school to be in partnership in responding to the needs of children. Our role at Baker is to provide students with opportunities to process their feelings about the election and to

Arming Our Hearts

A key aspect of Baker’s educational experience is our commitment to engaging a student’s mind, heart, and hands. In paying conscious attention to the cognitive, affective, and kinesthetic areas of child development, we help our students grow into well-rounded human beings. I want to explore how and why we attend to developing the affective arena