Trevor Day School: A Profile

Kids in drama class

Schools like Trevor allow students to take more control of their own education.
Image: Shutterstock

Trevor Day School, a private school located in Manhattan, New York, offers inquiry-based learning for students in pre-K through twelfth grade. Its two Manhattan campuses provide a variety of educational opportunities for students, from academics to athletics to summer and after-school programs that encourage students to collaborate and create their own projects. The school also hosts an annual MiniTerm, which allows students in grades 4-8 to focus intensely on nontraditional subjects for four weeks.

With a high-powered Board of Trustees including President Sally Rocker, Vice President MaryKay Coyle, Treasurer Andrew Gordon, and Secretary Raymond J. Iwanowski, Trevor uses inquiry-based learning to help students take part in shaping their own education. The more than 800 enrolled students experience both college preparatory curriculum and the opportunity to be involved with a variety of outside-the-classroom programming, including summer activities, music, theater, gaming clubs, service learning programs, and athletics.

One of these enriched programs is the winter break MiniTerm. The four-week intensive program helps students move beyond traditional classroom work and meet new teachers and peers while working on different subjects. Past themes have included mastering the Rubik’s Cube, musical composition, chess, public speaking, quilting, and improv and sketch comedy. The program concludes with a presentation in which students share what they’ve learned with the broader community.

In 2015, this presentation included a solo performance of “Romeo and Juliet, a staged sword fight, a musical anatomy video, an original opera, and a discussion of technological design and 3D printers.

The last two hours of every school day are devoted to the arts, allowing each student to be involved with a school-wide musical, whether as actors, set designers, costumes, lighting experts, or musicians.

Trevor students are lucky to have access to a wide range of learning opportunities, as well as the ability to have more of a hand in designing their own learning process. Creating self-motivated learners is a vital part of education that’s often left out of more traditional schools.

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