Technology & Innovation
From science, engineering, and math, to digital arts, robotics, and 3-D design, Mizzentop students have opportunities in and out of the classroom to develop the technological skills by asking why and not just how. This is where the gifted writer or performer can also thrive as a computer programmer.

Technology is thoughtfully integrated into the curriculum, giving students the skills and experience necessary to advance in our increasingly technological world.

Computer Science

How is a computer’s memory like our own, and how reliant should we be on these devices that sit on our desks and in our pockets? What role does technology play in our globally connected world? What is artificial intelligence? Is machine consciousness possible? Our Middle School students begin to ponder these questions and many more as they become familiar with the many complexities of the so-called “Digital Age.” Beginning in fifth grade, students travel back in time to 2001 to consider why HAL won’t open the pod bay doors; they learn about Moore’s Law by thinking about how computing has changed over the past several decades; and finally, our students explore the recent advancements of the open-source software movement by learning Ubuntu, an operating system that borrows its name from the South African term used to describe “humanity toward others.”

Robotics and Engineering

Students are encouraged to engineer solutions to social concerns through 3D printing and robotics. Our 3D Printing Lab provides students with the ability to prototype, design, and create physical objects that can be used to solve real-world problems. Middle School students are asked to engineer a model of a project that would change the world for the better, such as a water filter that could be used in Africa, where poverty is caused by the lack of access to clean, safe water and proper sanitation, or measuring cups and utensils that can be distributed through the Pawling Resource Center.

Programming

Students learn to love not the answers but the questions themselves as they code, build, and problem-solve in the Mizzentop Computer Lab. Mizzentop is among the few schools in the United States to teach computer programming from Kindergarten through Eighth Grade, where children learn computational thinking and problem solving in incremental, age-appropriate lessons tailored to each student’s unique strengths and interests. By Middle School, our students are excited to build their own games with JavaScript by using variables, functions, and algorithms.

Digital Literacy

Our students learn to tame to the digital demands of our time by taking a mindful approach to technology and by avoiding excessive screen time. Middle Schoolers explore the Google Suite for Education and other digital tools through real-life projects and challenges; our younger students fine tune their math, literacy, and logic skills through adaptive learning tools that are integrated with their classroom curriculum. By Eighth Grade, students are comfortable using the tools that they have developed to analyze data and solve complex, open-ended problems that require careful thought and contemplation.

Digital Citizenship

In our fast-paced, ever-increasing technological society - a society that calls for innovation, teamwork, and creative thinking - our students take pause to consider how to think critically, behave safely, and participate responsibly in the digital world. Our Digital Citizenship curriculum covers eight distinct areas of study, including: privacy and security, digital footprint and reputation, self image and identity, creative credit and copyright, communication, information literacy, cyberbullying, and internet safety.

Student Privacy

Mizzentop is committed to protecting our students’ privacy and safety. Digital tools are rigorously assessed against the high standards of the Student Privacy Pledge and Common Sense Media. All internet content is filtered according to grade level by Securly, the first web filter to use cutting edge algorithms to flag activity that might be indicative of cyberbullying or self-harm. Together, we can nurture and guide our children to manage their screen time safely and productively.