"What is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?"
- Mary Oliver
As a senior at The Peak school, you don't just learn about your passions, you live them.
For three out of four quarters, you engage in an academically challenging college-level curriculum. Schedules are designed to offer more flexibility and ownership of your learning, while also fostering time-management skills crucial for post-secondary success. In addition to core classes, you focus on a self-designed, year-long capstone project. In third-quarter, you embark on an experiential internship to further research and "live" your project.
The Senior Schedule
With one fewer core course, seniors have a free block during the school day, which allows you to have a more flexible schedule. We value this sort of student independence as an important aspect of our curriculum, and intentionally structure the senior schedule to foster self-awareness and time-mangagement skills, which are cruicial to success in college and in life.
View the senior schedule here.
The Senior Project
Before graduating, every Peak student writes a 20 page paper on a topic of their choice, which is researched and written over the course of nearly one and a half years.
The process for conceptualizing and researching your senior project begins in third quarter of junior year and continues until just before graduation.
At The Peak School, students engage in Gateway projects as they matriculate to certain years of their schooling. The first Gateway is in the 6th grade, the next in 8th, and finally 11th. However, 11th grade Gateway projects are only partially complete and serve as the starting point for the capstone senior project, when students "gateway" beyond Peak's walls.
As a junior, you will select your topic, choose an adivsor, conduct initial research, and present your nascent findings.
When you return to school for senior year, one of your new core courses is entirely dedicated to the senior project process, during which you will have to manage research, writing, and meeting deadlines before you embark on your third quarter internship. In addition, you will have weekly meetings with your advisor, and coursework in your other three core courses.
Every senior is required to write a paper and fullfill an experiential learning opportunity related to their project, which is related to their third quarter off-campus experience. In the past, these projects have included theatre productions, musical albums, school policy proposals, building a sustainable Earthbag house, and more.
Quarter Three Experience
One of our most popular programs is the third quarter, off-campus experiential learning opportunity, during which you conduct first-hand research for your senior project. For most students, your senior internship is the first time in your school career when you are not attending regular classes.
We prepare our seniors through previous independent research such as Gateway, STEM Fair, and National History Day projects, as well as, coaching and guidance in designing their senior projects beginning in the third quarter of their junior year.
By the time you leave in January, you are well into the writing process for you final paper, an expert in writing professional emails and thank-you notes, and prepared for a taste of life beyond campus.
The college-counseling program at The Peak School is unique in its intensity, comprehensiveness, and personal approach.
In the 12th grade, you matriculate into college counselor Nick Smith's Base Camp—The Peak School version of homeroom—which allows for more one-on-one time with Nick during the final stretch of your college application process and more bonding time with your senior class before graduation.