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Faculty discusses lessons with two high school students who are writing on a white board
The Pursuit of Excellence

Our teaching practices and tools lay the foundations for student success in higher education and in life

Explore the Pillars of a Morristown-Beard school Education:

Excellence in Teaching and Learning

Excellence in Teaching

Excellence in teaching is sustained by innovation: innovation follows from experimentation, and experimentation in the classroom is fuelled by inspiration, new ideas, and exposure to communities of learning. To provide teachers with all three, Morristown-Beard School provides teachers with both individual and institutional professional development pathways.

Individualized Teacher Growth and Learning: 

Lifelong learning is at the heart of the MBS experience, for teachers as well as students. We believe that where teachers are supported in pursuing their intellectual passions, students reap the benefits, in innovative curriculum and programming. MBS is committed to providing teachers with opportunities and resources to pursue learning in the directions that matter most to them, in the belief that doing so will promote excellence in the classroom and beyond. 

Institutional Growth and Learning:

Professional Development at MBS aims at giving individual teachers the resources and means for expanding knowledge, skills, and interests, and also to engage the entire community on shared endeavors of learning and growth. Among the programming offered by and for the entire school are assessment workshops run by our Center for Teaching and Learning, Center for Academic Writing, and Center for Innovation and Design, a two-day Summer Educator Session, and training sessions led by outside experts. As much as individuals, institutions are capable of learning and growth, serving as repositories of knowledge, know-how, and collective wisdom. At MBS, our school-wide professional development initiatives are consistently inspired by our mission of shaping all of our students into “morally enlightened citizens of the world,” with courage and curiosity giving meaning to their lives.

Excellence in Learning

Excellent learning means “deep learning,” and “deep learning” depends on a student’s mastery of disciplinary knowledge and know-how, their eagerness to identify as intellectually committed and curious individuals, and their creative application of concepts and skills to real-world problems, products, and productions. Morristown-Beard School supports students in all three facets of their growth as learners and people:

Mastery

Morristown-Beard has the resources and programs to support any student ambitious for the highest level of mastery in a discipline--and a faculty dedicated to inspiring all students to find that ambition. Our academic Centers, rich course offerings at advanced levels (both AP and innovative, seminar-style Advanced Study and Advanced Seminar alternatives to the AP), and high density of faculty with advanced degrees and real-world expertise, set us apart in the world of education. Mastery is an ideal, never truly attained, but the faculty and resources of Morristown-Beard School allows all students to see how rich and rewarding the journey to mastery should be.

Identity

Our earned honors program, student-centered pathways through disciplines, and numerous elective offerings afford students the opportunity to discover, expand, and deepen their identities as thinkers and learners. We recognize the divergent and emergent strengths of our students, and we encourage them to take the intellectual risks that will reveal how far those strengths can carry them. It is our hope that students leave MBS celebrating and pursuing their passions for growth, discovery, and change in and out of the classroom. That, we believe, is the best preparation for college and life beyond college.

Creativity

The Center for Innovation and Design, a Makerspace, a state of the art theater, and a range of pathways in the arts speak to the value Morristown-Beard School places on creativity. But creativity does not live in the arts alone. A commitment to creating and making energizes academic life across the School, in the curriculum as well as in the extracurricular activities that fuel student growth. But creativity, though it can involve producing a work of art or organizing an event, more fundamentally means that students in all disciplines are empowered to see that they construct knowledge and understanding through active engagement with whatever materials are at hand and through collaboration with other learners.
 

Immerse Yourself in the MBS Experience

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Immerse yourself in our unique learning experience and see our educational technology and learning tools in action on a campus visit.

Middle School student Matt talks about the hands-on, real-world learning that takes place on campus and the adjacent Frelinghuysen Arboretum.

Upper School student Trevone discusses the opportunities to discover afforded to him by his Morristown-Beard experience.

 

Curricular Philosophy

Ensuring the growth and well-being of our students lies at the center of all our decisions at MBS. We maintain a balanced approach to rigorous academics, enriching co-curricular and extra-curricular activities, and an engaging family and community life.  As students pursue their individual paths to academic success in our community of learners, they are guided by highly-dedicated teachers who are fully versed in the latest educational research, with particular emphasis on the following key practices in all subject areas:

CRITICAL THINKING facilitates greater understanding of complex topics and situations. Students learn to ask questions, identify problems, synthesize key concepts, and design creative solutions in pursuit of knowledge.
RISK-TAKING is encouraged. Our educational program recognizes this as a valid learning modality, even when an investigation does not proceed as expected. Play and a sense of fun are key components in nurturing appropriate intellectual risk-taking.
WRITING is a means of thinking and developing thoughts, not just a way to record pre-existing ideas. Analytic and reflective writing should not be the exclusive domain of the traditional text-based disciplines, but should be actively encouraged across the curriculum.
QUANTITATIVE REASONING is valued as a means of logical processing both in and beyond the math classroom. Developing a sound quantitative mindset is crucial to understanding, critiquing, and drawing conclusions in our increasingly data-intensive culture.
INNOVATIVE CONNECTIONS across disciplines inspires original approaches to solving problems and prepares students for life beyond the classroom.

Professional Development

An Everlasting Quest for MBS Faculty

Excellence in teaching and learning depends upon a passion for the pursuit of new knowledge. At Morristown-Beard School, our faculty members continually explore both the professional aspects of teaching as well as particular areas of academic interest and expertise in order to grow their skills and knowledge base. This professional development directly impacts your child's education at MBS, as our teachers work quickly to incorporate new instructional approaches and learning tools into their classrooms.

We’re happy to share a few examples of recent faculty professional development. As a school, we’re quite proud of these impressive accomplishments in the professional development realm:

Andrea Deventer

Andrea Deventer (Performing Arts) attended a four-day “Professional Dance Teacher Retreat” near Boston, Massachusetts. Classes were held on “Classic Dance Techniques,” “Critique Your Choreography,” “Combinations Using Non-8-Count Music,” and “Progressive Warm-up Through Age Levels,” to name a few. Andrea had the opportunity to spend time with other dance teachers from around the country, exchanging ideas about her craft.

Darren Lovelock

Darren Lovelock (English) travelled to White Plains, New York, for a one-day Learning and the Brain training seminar entitled “Active Differentiation in Practice.” Dr. Kristina J. Doubet, a Professor of Education at the College of Education at James Madison University, advised seminar attendees about best practices in implementing initiatives in differentiated instruction, curriculum design, digital learning, and classroom assessment. Darren returned to MBS, armed with more than a dozen new ideas that he shared with the English Department.

Gorica Hadzic

Gorica Hadzic (World Languages) attended the Annual Conference “Français langue étrangère—French dual-language conference” organized by the Metropolitan New York Chapter of the American Association of Teachers of French (AATF). The conference focused on the benefits of a dual language education, as well as the growing body of research on bilingualism that confirms the lasting impact that these immersion programs will have for generations to come.

Laurie Hartman

Laurie Hartman (Visual Arts) enrolled in a one-on-one follow-up course in “Creating Digital Negatives” with professional photographer Morgan Post. Previously, Laurie studied with Post at the Center for Photography in Woodstock, New York, learning how to make enlarged negatives from digital files, as well as scanned black and white film negatives. The concentration was on adjusting those negatives specifically for platinum printing, all helpful information for Laurie to use in her “Advanced Photography” course.

Michael McGrann

Michael McGrann (World Languages) attended the 20th Anniversary Celebration for SALVI (the North American Institute of Living Latin Studies). The celebration included presentations about teaching Latin and Classics at both the secondary and tertiary levels, workshops about topics ranging from specific teaching techniques to the development of the Latin language, a musical performed in Latin, and social interactions with friends and colleagues. Michael also presented at the Foreign Language Educators of New Jersey (FLENJ) Annual Conference.


Student Achievement

A Celebration of Excellence in Learning

We’re also excited to share stories that highlight notable achievements earned by our talented students. These students represent MBS well, and we are delighted to recognize a few of them below.

Student Achievement


MBS Centers for Learning

Decades of academic research highlight the importance of both meaningful teacher-student engagement and highly experiential learning in the intellectual growth of young people. Accordingly, Morristown-Beard School has thoughtfully created three Centers for Learning to best engender the high-level development of several essential skills in your child.

Center for Academic Writing

The Center for Academic Writing helps your child embrace the writing process, learning to appreciate writing as a tool for inquiry while experimenting to find her or his voice on the page.

Center for Teaching & Learning

Throughout their school experience, MBS students receive support and instruction from the Center for Teaching & Learning.

Center for Innovation & Design

Opened in 2019, the Center for Innovation & Design (CID) provides more than 8,000 square feet of flexible and innovative space where students design, build, and problem solve as they engage in multidisciplinary projects.

Explore the Pillars of an MBS Education

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