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What is Exhibition Day? A Look at a BTA Community Tradition

experiential learning, student-centered learning

 Every school has traditions and customs that make it unique: a school song, an annual spirit week, or a regular service project.

These special traditions help create a school community that feels like a family, united around common memories and a common effort to grow and learn together. For Blyth-Templeton Academy in D.C., our favorite community traditions include something we call Exhibition Day.

Keep reading as we explore what Exhibition Day is, how it brings out the best in our students, and what it means for our larger community of BTA parents, friends, and supporters in the D.C....

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"My Kids Are Thinking About BTA:" Promoting Student Agency from Application to Graduation

adolescent development, motivating teens, student-centered learning

We recently received an email from an interested parent that opened with the following statement: "my kids are thinking about going to your school."

The rest of the email followed in the typical style for an initial inquiry. The family was interested in learning more and wanted to find a time to connect with a member of the admissions team to talk about the schooling environment and options at Blyth-Templeton Academy.

Are you perhaps wondering why we found the opening line so striking? Here's the statement again: "my kids are thinking about going to your school." 

In our eyes, this parent...

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3 Questions We Ask Parents and Students Who Are Interested in Blyth-Templeton

student-centered learning

Applying to private schools, especially private high schools, gets a bad reputation for being a highly stressful and highly selective yet oddly ambiguous process. Many students and parents find themselves asking the question - what do they want? What are they even looking for?

At Blyth-Templeton we pride ourselves in operating under a spirit of honesty and transparency. We think a high school education should be about more than standardized testing and measuring up to predetermined benchmarks of success.

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How the Most Popular TED Talk of All Time Inspired Blyth-Templeton’s Approach to Quality, Affordable Private Education

student-centered learning

Interesting things can come from the unscheduled hours of a flight delay. A bout of bad weather during a layover between Austin and Washington D.C. gave me the gift of several free hours to catch up on long-neglected articles and podcasts. Before I knew it, I was musing about the original founding of the Blyth-Templeton Academy model and about the questions I asked then and still ask myself about how education ought to work in order to best serve kids.

Here’s an exploration of some of the questions that I have been asking and answering as the BTA team pioneers a re-conceptualization of...

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4 Things Parents Should “Unlearn” When it Comes to Education

student-centered learning, parents and education

 In my more than 30 years teaching and leading high schools, I often see parents unknowingly sabotage their own child’s success. They’ve been bombarded with messages that tell them, “the more involved you are in your child’s education, the more they will learn.”

The interpretation of this involvement maxim has come to mean helping with homework, rushing to school to bring the forgotten book, offering a multitude of enrichment activities, hiring tutors, and using carrots and sticks to motivate.

It’s not that parent involvement isn’t crucial to success, but many of us are doing it wrong. 

In...

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