Our Program

Upper School (Fifth–Eighth Grade)

Learning culminates in a program tailored to the strengths and challenges of learners moving from childhood to adolescence.

Bank Street’s independent Upper School on Manhattan’s Upper West Side includes fifth through eighth grade, which are commonly classified as middle school grades. Our program builds on the academic skills and learning styles garnered in previous grades to prepare junior high students to challenge themselves academically as teenagers. Teachers and specialists in the Upper School love working with this wonderfully fast-developing age group. In the Upper School, our emphasis on putting students at the center of learning supports a happy transition from childhood to adolescence.

Upper School students have a dynamic schedule that includes classes in art, shop, music, chorus, drama, STEAM, library, Spanish or French, and a wide range of co-curricular opportunities including interscholastic sports. Many classes are taught in small group formats that encourage collaboration and active problem-solving. The result is a community of enthusiastic learners who understand their strengths and learning styles, are well-prepared academically, and are able to self-advocate while working well with others.

Preparation for the high school application process begins in the spring of the 12/13s year and our graduates are coveted additions to the many high school communities to which they apply.

John Lewis speaking to students

Spotlight on Progressive Education:

No Ordinary Field Trip: A Conversation with John Lewis
The social studies curriculum culminates with an in-depth dive into civics, American History, and civil rights. Eighth grade students take an annual trip to the nation’s capital to meet with lawmakers, such as living legend Congressman John Lewis. Through dialogue and observation, students identify with the struggles of the past and the power of community and advocacy.
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