Middle School Calendar
  • October 2018
    • SatOct20 Fall Festival 6:00 PM to 9:00 PMButler
    • MonOct22 Middle School Swimming Begins
    • MonOct22 Middle School Swimming Parent Meeting 6:30 PMLower University School
    • TueOct23 Grade 6 Greek Oympics

Congratulations to these seven members of Laurel's class of 2019 who have received Letters of Commendation in recognition of their outstanding academic promise, based on their Preliminary Scholastic Achievement Test scores. More than 1.6 million juniors took the PSAT in 2017. Catherine Amaddio, Grace Cousens, Ria Desai, Meredith Hilkert, Cameron Kaye, Simran Surtani, and Daania Tahir all scored in the top 50,000 of those participants.

Early childhood education is just as rewarding for educators as it is for students. This was the theme in a recent Cleveland Jewish News article that featured interview excerpts from Laurel Prekindergarten teacher Kathryn Marshall. In the story Kathryn states that, "Children keep me in the moment and help me rediscover the joy of being in the moment. I get to have the same awe with children right there with them." She goes on to explain that she is "Always trying to find new, innovative ways to teach children. The sense of joy and wonder of living in the moment also translates into my life." Click here to read the full story, including the sage advice Kathryn would give her younger self.
Jami Morris '21, who competed in the Drive, Chip & Putt National Finals in Augusta earlier this year, recently conducted a Q&A with Cleveland Magazine where she talked golf, fashion, the perfect miniature golf hole design and her hobbies off the golf course. Her story was featured in the magazine's Private School Special Section. When asked what her favorite golf attire is she replied "I have these crazy bright pink shorts. If I had 20 pairs, I would wear them every day. They brighten my game and encourage me to be the best golfer I can be." She also touched on equality in her interview, stating that "Women should be able to play with the men, on the same courses and with the same yardages. That would be a big step up for women's golf, and we will rise to the challenge." 

Click here to read her full interview.  

Jackson to work together with Ann V. Klotz and Board members to maintain the Laurel School Mission

SHAKER HEIGHTS, OH – (August 22, 2018) Laurel School is pleased to announce Lynnette Jackson ’93 as the new Chair of the Board of Trustees. Jackson, a Relationship Manager and Vice President at Key Private Bank, has been on the Board since 2012, most recently serving as Vice Chair. Prior to joining the Board of Trustees, Jackson held the role of Laurel Alumnae Board President from 2009-2012.

“It is both an honor and a privilege to serve in this role as Board Chair,” said Lynnette Jackson. “It is an opportunity to give back to my alma mater who, through academic rigor, enriching experiences and leadership opportunities, has inspired me and my family to dream, dare and do. As Laurel embarks on its 125th Birthday, the work of this Board will certainly shape the next 25-50 years of the school.”

In her Relationship Manager role at Key Private Bank, Jackson delivers integrated strategies and forward-thinking, objective advice to her clients. These skills will continue to serve her well in her new role as Board Chair where Jackson will work closely with Laurel Headmistress Ann V. Klotz and other Board members to continue to set and maintain a vision and strategy for the school. Together, they will ensure sound financial management, appropriate stewardship of resources, and accountability towards goals.

“I am so pleased to be working hand-in-hand with Lynnette and the entire Board of Trustees to continue living Laurel’s mission and building on our long-term vision,” said Ann V. Klotz, Laurel Headmistress. “The Board has been instrumental in the development of our Strategic Roadmap and it is an exciting time for us as we embark on our next goal. I look forward to seeing what we can accomplish together.”

Other updates to the Board include Kristine Swails Bryan ’80, who has been named Vice Chair. Bryan is an Equity Research Consultant with Private Harbour Investment Management, LLC, and has been a member of the Board since 2015, most recently serving as Chair of the Investment Committee. Megan Lum Mehalko ’83, Chaundra King Monday ’95, and Suzanne Schulze Taylor ’81, have all been newly elected to the Board with three-year terms commencing June 2018.

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Founded in 1896, Laurel School is a nationally recognized school for girls in Kindergarten through Grade 12, with a coeducational Pre-Primary School. Its mission is “to inspire each girl to fulfill her promise and to better the world.”

CONTACT:    

SARAH MILLER, PR MANAGER, 713.578.0281, sMiller@LaurelSchool.org

KATE FLOYD, DIRECTOR OF MARKETING, 216.455.0152, kFloyd@LaurelSchool.org

Laurel's After School Coordinator, Tina Ohmart, was recently included in a Cleveland Jewish News article highlighting the importance of after-school programming and its benefits to kids. In the story she states that, "We have students who stay after school for supervised play and they hang out with their friends and develop emotional and social skills. And then there are structured activities where students can learn something specific as well. But across the board, there are social-emotional skills that can be learned. Everything else is a plus.”

She also highlights how after-school programming can be a great avenue for personal growth. Click here to read the full story.

According to the Cleveland Jewish News, "Advancements in technology have made their way into the classroom and influence the way students learn."

Daniel McGee, Laurel's director of technology and library services, was recently interviewed for a piece focused on technology in the classroom and how its use affects how students learn. In the story Daniel agreed that technology’s influence is largely for the better. "Technology is kind of boundless, it has no boundaries, so it can be used for any discipline. It allows you to do something transformative and it allows you to find ways to express yourself in unique ways that you wouldn’t be able to do without using those tools."

Daniel also touched on Laurel's one-to-one laptop program where a laptop is provided to each student and the use of G Suite so students and teachers can utilize Google apps, such as Docs, Sheets and Classroom to engage with the learning material. 3D printers are also incorporated into the curriculum at Laurel.

Click here to read the full story.

Laurel's Capstone Experience was recently featured in Currents Magazine. Capstone, a three-and-a-half-year program that promotes research, mentorship, peer collaboration and relationships, internships, leadership and peer travel, had 86 Upper School students participate during the 2017/2018 school year. What makes the Capstone Experience unique is its focus on students' drive and interest in participating in something extracurricular versus their transcripts. If accepted, girls participate in group projects and collaborative seminars through the end of Grade Ten and then go on to choose an area of inquiry that falls under one of four lenses: Civic Engagement, Entrepreneurship, Global Studies, or STEAM. 

The Currents piece highlights Morgan Goldstein '18 who, as part of her Capstone Experience, authored a cookbook where adolescents are the intended audience. Morgan worked closely with her project mentor Steve Trattner, who has worked with many notable chefs on their own cookbooks, to make her dream become a reality. The article highlights another former Capstone student, Maddy Massey '18, who chose the STEAM lens for her research and comprised a seven-song album. To achieve this, Maddy worked with her mentor, local singer/songwriter Jennifer Chittester, who played at LaureLive in 2016. 

Trey Wilson, Laurel's Director of Strategic Partnerships, was interviewed for this story. Click here to read the full piece.

In her latest New York Times Well Adolescence column, Dr. Lisa Damour, Executive Director of Laurel's Center for Research on Girls, focuses on consent and what it truly means to want to engage in a sexual behavior. In her column, Lisa states that, "So long as discussions of consent crowd out discussions of basic interpersonal sensitivity, we should not be surprised by reports of young men who (more often than the other way around) badger young women for sexual favors. It may be legal to wear someone down, but doing so is not the basis for healthy relationships between any two people, be they of the opposite or same sex."

"And so long as we normalize mere consent as an acceptable standard for sexual engagement, it will remain commonplace for young women (and sometimes, young men) to harbor feelings of confusion and regret after participating in sexual activity for which they technically gave consent, but only when pressured."

She goes on to highlight that, "Sexual encounters ought to be pleasurable, mutual endeavors. They should advance as partners earnestly and happily agree, not because one party merely grants permission to the other. Too often, our advice to young people trains their attention on consent, the lowest possible bar for lawful sexual activity. We routinely spell out precisely what does, and doesn’t, constitute acquiescence but say little or nothing about tuning in to one’s partner’s desires. To put a very fine point on it, we essentially communicate, 'When it comes to your sex life, don’t assault or rape anyone.'"

Dr. Tori Cordiano, a clinical psychologist and Research Director for Laurel's Center for Research on Girls, served as the expert in a recent Your Teen Magazine Q&A about how parents can communicate with their teen about dating and issues that can arise.

In the piece Dr. Cordiano states that, "Though it can be tough to think about teenage relationships, dating during adolescence serves as good practice for future relationships and allows teens to consider what qualities matter to them in a relationship. One key to navigating this issue is frequent, open-ended conversations with your daughter or son. If your teenager is like most, he will balk at the idea of discussing his dating life with you, but don’t let that stop you from jumping on the chance to discuss the topic with him when you can. And expect to have numerous conversations—your son may be more open to talking about it if he knows it will be brief and low-key and that he doesn’t have to settle in for a lecture."

Click here to read the full piece.

In May a reporter from Quartz at Work, a global business news organization owned by The Atlanticvisited Laurel's Butler Campus to observe students in Grades Three through Seven who are part of the school's Adventure Girls program as they participated in their long awaited overnight, representing the culmination of a year of adventures together. The article states that "While this may sound like a run-of-the-mill after-school program or summer camp, there’s an element that sets it apart: Adventure Girls is borne out of research on how girls can build resilience. The program aims to create stress-inducing situations and equip young girls with the tools to get through them. Girls get started young so that they’ll be prepared to handle the pressures of high school, college, and life beyond."

Adventure Girl leaders Shannon Lukz and Chuck Allen are both highlighted in the story, as is Dr. Lisa Damour, Executive Director of Laurel's Center for Research on Girls, who highlights the research initiative Laurel has embarked on in the last eight years to examine the relationship girls have with stress and how to build resilience—the ability to adapt well to adversity. 

The article states that "The research findings that Damour uncovered have been crucial for the framework that underpins Adventure Girls and the broader culture at Laurel School. This framework outlines five elements of resilience: creativity, purpose, growth-mindset, relationships, and self-care. Adventure Girls learn these tools in a variety of ways, often through more subtle cues, including the way the adults structure activities and discussions before and after."

The Adventure Girls program is year-round, and meets 12 times each semester. Girls take two to three field trips that involve adventurous activities like kayaking, climbing, or snowshoeing. The program works hard to get parents and teachers on the same page to work toward the same goal—fostering language and behaviors that teach these girls how to handle adversity.

Click here to read the full story.

  • October 2018
    • WedOct17 Grade 4 Power and Purpose Butler
    • ThuOct18 Grade 4 Power and Purpose Butler
    • ThuOct18 Grades 10 and 11 Class Trips
    • FriOct19 Grade 4 Power and Purpose Butler
    • FriOct19 Grades 10 and 11 Class Trips
    • SatOct20 Fall Festival 6:00 PM to 9:00 PMButler
    • MonOct22 Grade 4 Power and Purpose Butler
    • MonOct22 Middle School Swimming Begins
    • MonOct22 Middle School Swimming Parent Meeting 6:30 PMLower University School
    • TueOct23 Grade 4 Power and Purpose Butler
    • TueOct23 Grades 7 and 8 Advisory Parent Breakfast 8:00 AM to 8:30 AMLyman
    • TueOct23 Grades 7 and 8 Parent Coffee 8:30 AM to 9:15 AMLyman
    • WedOct24 Grade 4 Power and Purpose Butler
    • WedOct24 Upper School Basketball and Swimming Parent Meeting 6:00 PM to 7:30 PMLyman

Middle School (Grades 5 - 8)

 

You need only step into the north wing to sense the bustling energy of budding scientists, artists, writers and thinkers diving deep into their learning. The Middle School experience at Laurel is inspired by the work of our Center for Research on Girls on how girls learn best. Experiential learning balances time-honored traditions, and strategies are tailored to each girl as she finds and develops her voice.

Girls learn by doing. They create and conduct experiments in science, they build and draw models to visualize concepts in math, they memorize and act out scenes from Shakespearean plays, and they investigate and debate constitutional issues. Research about the power of authentic, project-based learning has led us to teach design thinking; in our new Collaboratory for hands-on prototyping girls combine habits of mind from each STEAM discipline: Science, Technology, Engineering, the Arts and Math.

All Girls School In Shaker Heights, OH Image - Laurel SchoolWe know girls love choice, so programs in the Middle School are individualized. Each girl advances at her own pace in math, some accelerating to Geometry or Algebra II by Eighth Grade. Girls elect Spanish, Chinese or French, speaking in the target language during class and reaching Level III by Upper School. In Seventh Grade, girls ready for more intellectual rigor add Latin, too. Our One-to-One Technology Program supports each girl’s learning, and girls intrigued by programming tinker with computer game design during electives or in their free time.

Laurel girls rise to creative challenges. Many girls represent Laurel in off-campus competitions in science, global issues, math and writing. Girls choreograph and perform dances; they compose and sing songs; they strive on the fields and courts. Girls dream, dare and do every day in Laurel’s Middle School!

We would love to share more of our interdisciplinary program built on Laurel’s longstanding traditions of excellence and innovation. We hope you will visit soon to see for yourself all that Laurel has to offer each girl!

Sincerely,

Leslie K Segal ‘95
Director of the Middle School

Philosophy

English 5-8

Through a comprehensive, integrated language arts program, Laurel girls become independent, fluent readers and writers. Students read a variety of genres and learn vocabulary, reading strategies and new perspectives. Laurel girls grow from seeing their own experiences reflected in the material they read. Through a context-rich approach in which they learn to identify patterns, they develop language skills for oral and written communication. They learn to communicate effectively and to practice the research process while making connections with other coursework. Students assess their writing through self-evaluation and peer and teacher feedback.

Social Studies 5-8

Laurel’s social studies program prepares students to become responsible and productive citizens. Through our integrated, engaging curriculum, girls deepen their understanding of the world and apply their knowledge and skills to make effective personal and public decisions. They learn to think independently, conduct research, write effectively and express themselves orally through dynamic lessons that address students’ learning styles.

Mathematics 5-8

Mathematics is integral to functioning efficiently and effectively in today’s society. We value the purposeful use of mathematical resources in decision-making and celebrate the beauty of thoughtful mathematical procedures. Laurel teachers facilitate individual and collaborative investigations in which they require students to construct their own mathematical knowledge. Participation in this journey refines students’ computational, manipulative, problem-solving and criticalthinking skills.

Science 5-8

The Laurel School science department seeks to provide every girl with the tools to courageously explore the physical world and to become an ethical, compassionate contributor to it. We believe that hands-on experimentation and teamwork are essential to girls studying science. Our students achieve success in thinking critically, solving problems creatively and articulating their ideas and findings to others. Studies in Fifth and Sixth Grade are thoughtfully integrated with units in other disciplines such as English, math, and social studies while Seventh and Eighth Grade courses serve as introductions to the fields of earth science, chemistry and physics.

World Languages 5-8

Studying languages in Grades K through 8 creates a solid foundation for children to become lifelong language learners. Teaching is done almost entirely in the target language to provide students with an immersion-style experience. Our goal is for students to develop a sense of confidence in their own abilities, to function in the target language and to genuinely enjoy language learning. Exposure to different languages and cultures broadens girls’ worldviews, enhances their sense of empathy and promotes curiosity about the world.

Visual Arts 5-8

Art is a language of expression and communication. It involves discovering ideas and transforming them into visual form. This process is nurtured through exposure to diverse examples of art (in our own and in other cultures) and through repeated opportunities to work with a variety of art media and techniques. The visual arts involve developing the ability to look analytically, while offering an exploration of varied materials and processes. Working in the visual arts engenders the development of many positive habits of mind, not the least of which are perseverance, taking risks, and willingness to explore options and embrace revision as a part of the process.

Performing Arts 5-8

In a classroom community, students learn to take risks as they explore their creativity. They engage in exercises that develop basic skills in each art form. As girls move through the performing arts curriculum, they grow from practicing the skills to using the skills in varying forms of self-expression. A cumulative curriculum allows students to build on previously mastered skills and to take each art form to the next level. Emphasis is placed on a creative, engaging process that leads directly to a final product.

Physical Education 5-8

The P.E. program is designed to help girls attain a basic understanding about the body and its capabilities and limitations in movement. Through a variety of activities, students explore movement and develop spatial awareness. Girls are encouraged to understand their personal strength and to cooperate with others. As the girls progress through Middle School, basic skills, knowledge of sports, physical activities, fitness and game play are emphasized.

 

"Inquire" button. Click to request information from Laurel School.      "Visit" button. Click to learn how to schedule your visit to Laurel School.      "Apply" button. Click to begin your application.

216-464-0946  •  Admissions@LaurelSchool.org

An All-Girls’ Independent College Preparatory School for Grades K-12 and Coed Pre-Primary
Lyman Campus Butler Campus
216.464.1441


Laurel's Mission Statement:


To inspire each girl to
fulfill her promise and
to better the world. 

 

All-School
Open House

Saturday, October 27, 2018
9:00 a.m. - 11:00 a.m.
Lyman Campus

More information

 


"Laurel transforms students into strong women through an exemplary education and an atmosphere built on growth." Caitlin Cronin '16


"During my time at Laurel, I developed the mental aspect of my tennis game -- staying focused and staying in every match. The support that I've gotten from my team and my coaches has really helped me to do that." Danielle Buchinsky '15


"Laurel encourages its girls to try things they think they can do, things they don't think they can do, and even things they never thought about doing." Jazlynn Baker '16


"Laurel is a place where almost every girl can find a home. The community here is extremely accepting and diverse, and every student has her own ideas and opinions that are valued by everyone."Rebecca Brichacek '16


"Confident, independent, open-minded, fearless. That's what comes to mind when I think of what Laurel has given to my daughters." Laurel Parent

 

“The greatest gift Laurel gave me was the gift of lifelong friendships with classmates, teachers and parents of classmates. We have a special bond based on our shared experiences.” 
Betsy Sweeney Backes ‘78

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