Understanding humanity, building empathy

Through the humanities, Nightingale students build on the school’s most critical foundation: empathy. They develop a deeper understanding of the human experience by studying historical narratives and learning about cultures through languages, both ancient and modern. Nightingale cultivates a love of reading, critical thinking, effective writing, and speaking in all its students.

Lower School

Immersive and interdisciplinary

Spanish begins in Kindergarten at Nightingale. Integrating Spanish into music, art, and library classes gives students playful and practical ways to assimilate what they’ve learned throughout the day. A focus on cultural exploration and real-world conversation keeps learning grounded in an authentic and immersive experience from the start. As students expand their comprehension, they create more opportunities for meaningful connections with the Spanish-speaking world.

An authentic and immersive experience from the start.

Welcome to the block

Inspired by Romare Bearden’s The Block, Class II students craft their own neighborhood narratives, describing everything from the local store to a central landmark. Studying the geography and the diversity of the five boroughs helps students understand how the city has changed over time and where they belong in the timeline. Explorations come to life through projects and field trips.

Class II students craft their own neighborhood narratives.

Building empathy

How do Class III students learn about human rights and responsibilities in our global village? The answer is through many lenses. By taking multi-faceted views of current events and world history, Nightingale builds on critical foundations of knowledge and empathy. Whether considering the United Nations sustainable development goals or the rights of the child, students bring their open minds and different points of view to each exploration of human rights.

Students bring their open minds and unique points of view to each exploration.

Democracy and citizenship

Social justice movements are the lens through which Class IV students investigate U.S. history. What better way to understand the mechanics of our political system and its role in sustaining communities than to look at those who incite change? Standing up for oneself and the greater good of society sets the stage for learning about democracy and echoes Nightingale’s core beliefs.

Standing up for oneself and the greater good sets the stage for learning.

Middle School

Why Latin?

Latin requires students to slow down and think before they speak. Complicated to master, it has them learning from their mistakes. An ancient language becomes a bridge to modern forms of communication and culture as students connect familiar roots and sounds. Because of Latin, Nightingale students can decode the history of words, better grasp rhetoric and deductive reasoning, and perform mental gymnastics while translating literature. That’s why.

Nightingale students perform mental gymnastics while translating literature.

Memorializing the marginalized

Class VIII marries history and legacy with design and symbolism in their capstone Memory Project. Selecting an individual who is written into the margins of history, students research and design a memorial to honor this person’s legacy. They witness the connective tissue between memory and history by visiting significant monuments and memorials. As students draft visual concepts, guided by school parents who are designers and architects, their bold visions transfer to the page and amplify voices left silenced by history.

Their bold visions amplify voices left silenced by history.

Upper School

Writing at the highest caliber

Pulitzer Prize winners and Poet Laureates are some of the revered voices who come to speak, motivate, and lead masterclasses with the students in Nightingale’s unparalleled Creative Writing Program. Weekly workshops, peer feedback, literary retreats, a safe environment, and a lineage of esteemed, published authors in Nightingale’s English department form a powerful combination that encourages student creativity and writing at the highest caliber.

Pulitzer Prize winners and Poet Laureates come to speak, motivate, and lead masterclasses.

Global dimensions

Modern languages develop global dimensions in the Upper School. Building upon foundational classwork, students take advantage of exchanges where they can speak the language, forge new relationships, and experience one-of-a-kind service opportunities. Nightingale students find ways to stretch the range of their comprehension, their impact, and social awareness, one conversation at a time.

Nightingale students find ways to stretch the range of their comprehension.