Big Picture Middle and High School emphasizes personalized and interest-based learning, in partnership with families and the community. Representatives from other districts and states visit our school as a model of the highly innovative Big Picture Learning style.
Big Picture students learn to think critically and demonstrate deep, engaged learning -- attributes colleges and employers are seeking.
Making learning relevant
As a school we are driven by a deeply held belief that connecting learning to students’ passions and to real-world experiences results in a truly meaningful academic journey that leads to success in college, career and life.
Rigorous learning connected to real-world and work experiences
In middle school, students get highly personalized instruction in small classes. Learning is hands-on and takes place both in the classroom and in the greater community. Math, science, and humanities, integrated with regular field trips, form the core of real-world learning.
A non-traditional learning model
All student work flows from an individualized learning plan based on high expectations, specific competencies and post-secondary goals. Students do not earn traditional grades and credits; they show mastery of Big Picture competencies through regular demonstrations of learning.
Big Picture Competencies
- Social Reasoning – critical analysis, diverse perspectives, people, places, environment.
- Personal Qualities – productive mindset, proactive learner, community engagement, project management.
- Empirical Reasoning – fluency and research fundamentals; design and conduct scientific inquiry; investigate a field of science; and analyze scientific knowledge, theories, and research.
- Communication – understanding, expression, research and inquiry, presentation and feedback, multimedia.
- Quantitative Reasoning – fluency and computation, logical reasoning, problem solving, modeling, analyzing data.
Big Picture by the Numbers
- High school students completed more than 10,000 hours of internships.
- Middle school students attended more than 40 field trips.
- Partners include over 100 local businesses, non-profits and community organizations.
- High school opened in 2005, middle school in 2011.
- Teacher to student ratio — 1:17
- Enrollment (May 2018) — 190