True North School: Cultivating and Prioritizing Student Wellbeing

Location –  Contiguo a la farmacia Fischel, en la Paco. Diagnal al BAC, hacia Guachipelín., Escazú, Costa Rica

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Contact –  +506 4020 2525

A School Founded on Wellbeing

In an era defined by unprecedented changes and opportunities, True North School recognizes the importance of well-being in navigating the complexities facing our world. At the core of our educational model lies a commitment to nurturing students who possess the adaptability, compassion, and resilience to effect positive change on a global scale.

Awaken Your True North: Bringing a Culture Based on Wellbeing

True North School initiates every day with “Awaken Your True North,” a program meticulously designed to awaken seven core skills essential for the holistic development of our students. A foundational skill in this suite is ‘Biocare,’ around which the school culture revolves. Biocare comprises various components that enable students to enhance their personal well-being and care for their biological, emotional, and environmental needs. Alongside Biocare, the program fosters five core skills: appreciation, audacity, commitment, curiosity, and empathy. These skills are cultivated daily through targeted sessions that focus on personal growth and self-awareness, setting the stage for a day of purposeful engagement. The seventh core skill, Equanimity, represents the outcome of our comprehensive approach—equipping students with the ability to remain centered and composed in the face of adversity and change.

Project-Based Learning: Bringing Learning to Life

One of the cornerstones of the True North experience is Project-Based Learning (PBL), where teachers inspire students to make learning come alive. In PBL, students embark on projects that extend over a quarter, tackling real-world problems and complex questions. By engaging in authentic inquiry and problem-solving, students not only deepen their content knowledge but also enhance by having the opportunity to apply the skills and content learned in the curriculum, develop critical thinking, collaboration, creativity, and communication skills.

The culmination of PBL projects is the creation of public products or presentations, allowing students to showcase their learning to a real audience. This approach unleashes a contagious, creative energy among students and teachers alike, fostering a culture of curiosity, innovation, and excellence.

Academic Excellence with Flexibility

Academic rigor is a hallmark of True North School, which is on its way to having its third accreditation. Currently accredited with the national and US High School Diploma and a candidate IB school, the curriculum is designed to be innovative and to support students’ needs and talents. Aligned with US and Costa Rican standards, the curriculum provides a framework for monitoring students’ progress while allowing for a learner-centered approach to mastery in core academic areas.

In addition to core subjects, True North offers enrichments in art, music, and physical education, providing students with opportunities to develop talents, explore new interests, and broaden their perspectives. These enrichments play a vital role in nurturing well-rounded individuals who are not only academically proficient but also creatively and physically engaged.

Goal Time Block: Cultivating Autonomy and Mastery

A unique feature of the True North experience is the Goal Time Block, a dedicated period during which students work independently to internalize skills and concepts learned in class. Completely personalized to meet each student’s needs, goals are structured as academic stations, games, and activities designed to make learning tangible and meaningful.

During Goal Time, students develop autonomy, time management, and planning skills as they choose, collaborate, and cooperate with peers to achieve their objectives. Whether through concrete models or visual representations, these activities create environments that reinforce learning and foster a sense of ownership over one’s education.

The Imperative for Conscious Leadership

As today’s students prepare to enter a world grappling with climate change, biodiversity loss, inequality, and other pressing issues, the need for conscious leadership has never been more evident. These challenges, addressed by the Sustainable Development Goals, demand innovative solutions and collaborative efforts that integrate all dimensions of well-being—social, environmental, and economic.

Conscious leadership is essential for effectively activating collective action and mobilizing diverse stakeholders towards a common purpose. By fostering empathy, ethical decision-making, and a deep understanding of interconnectedness, conscious leaders can inspire meaningful change and drive progress toward a more sustainable and equitable future.

Embracing a Learner-Centered Approach

At True North School, education is not merely about imparting knowledge but about creating conditions for meaningful change and growth. Through a learner-centered approach, the school places students at the center of the educational experience, recognizing their individual needs, strengths, and aspirations.

The learner-centered approach at True North School is characterized by:

Focus on Well-being, Consciousness, and Leadership: True North recognizes that education extends beyond academic achievement to encompass the holistic development of students. By fostering well-being, consciousness, and leadership skills, the school equips students with the tools they need to thrive in all aspects of life.

Purposeful Learning: Every aspect of the True North experience is designed to be purposeful, engaging, and relevant to students’ lives. By finding opportunities for real-world application and inquiry-based exploration, the school inspires a deep sense of curiosity and passion for learning.

Adaptability and Personalization: True North understands that every student is unique, with their own set of needs, interests, and potential. Through personalized learning pathways and differentiated instruction, the school adapts to meet the diverse needs of students, ensuring that each individual receives the support and guidance they need to succeed.

Empowering Students: Guided by the belief that students are active participants in their own learning journey, True North empowers students to take ownership of their education. By helping students understand their strengths, interests, challenges, and goals, the school fosters a sense of agency and self-efficacy.

Continuous Feedback and Growth: True North is committed to the ongoing refinement and improvement of student skills through continuous feedback and reflection. By providing timely feedback and opportunities for self-assessment, the school enables students to monitor their progress and set goals for further growth and development.

As educator Katie Martin aptly stated, “The impact of a teacher who sees their students as individuals, who get to know them and cultivates their creativity and curiosity, while developing academic skills, is invaluable.” True North School embodies this philosophy, with teachers who serve as mentors, guides, and champions of student potential.

Education as a Catalyst for Innovation

In the face of unprecedented challenges, education emerges as a powerful catalyst for innovation and transformation. True North School embraces this extraordinary moment in education, leveraging innovative pedagogies, experiential learning opportunities, and interdisciplinary approaches to prepare students to become conscious leaders of change.

By equipping students with the knowledge, skills, and mindset needed to address complex global issues, True North School empowers the next generation of leaders to create a more sustainable, just, and thriving world. Through collaboration, creativity, and collective action, students at True North School are poised to make a positive impact on their communities and beyond.

Conclusion: Embracing the Challenge of Our Time

As we stand at the dawn of a new era, True North School remains steadfast in its commitment to cultivating well-being for a sustainable future. By instilling a sense of purpose, empathy, and social responsibility in our students, we empower them to become catalysts for positive change in an ever-changing world.

In the words of Mahatma Gandhi, “Be the change you wish to see in the world.” At True North School, we believe that education has the power to unleash the transformative potential within each individual, inspiring them to become conscious leaders who embody the change they seek. Together, we embark on a journey towards a brighter, more sustainable future—one where wellbeing lights the way forward for generations to come.

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