Today we are visiting (virtually) a beloved sponsor of 510Families.com, Black Pine Circle School, an independent school in Berkeley.
Black Pine Circle School, an award-winning K-8 private school in Berkeley, is the daytime home to 328 students who enjoy a diversity of inquiry-based learning experiences, all designed to support their journey towards independent thought and a lifelong love of learning.
From the maker lab to “The Oasis”, a magical play area, Black Pine Circle has thoughtfully designed a campus that inspires experimentation.
All Black Pine Circle students benefit from the music program, with access to Orff-based instrumental literacy beginning in Kindergarten. Beginning in first grade, all students have the opportunity to learn a stringed instrument, either violin or cello twice a week during the school day.
Science comes to life in the garden (lunch scraps turns to compost that the students use!) and in the Q Lab, a workshop outfitted with a laser cutter, 3D printers, and a variety of tools in an open space that supports and inspires “creative chaos.”
The lower school students begin their morning with an adorable song. Click play to hear a sample.
Black Pine Circle School was voted “The Best” in five categories in this year’s Parents’ Press awards:
- Best Independent Elementary School
- Best Alternative Learning Styles Elementary School
- Best Progressive Elementary School
- Best Independent Middle School
- Best Progressive Middle School
I've been inside the school many times, and am always inspired by the projects on the wall. Not only is the students' work impressive, but the assignments themselves are so thoughtful.
Do you want to see inside? Family Maker Fridays are one opportunity to do that, held on November 9 and December 7, 6:00pm – 8:30pm. For more school tour and admission events, read on.
The principles of the school, articulated in their motto “CURIOSITY, COMMUNITY, INQUIRY, & VOICE”, are actualized through both strong academics and incorporation of visual and performing arts.
Every classroom uses the Socratic method to encourage tons of question-asking and to rally the students around the idea that there is always more to know. For a better explanation of what that means, watch the video in the How We Learn/How We Teach section of the BPC website.
Teachers at Black Pine Circle School are also committed to coaching children's social-emotional development and fostering a community where students feel safe in their stages of development and individual differences.
“BPC is an amazing community of devoted teachers, dedicated staff, curious students, and engaged families. Students are treated with respect and encouraged to take risks, make mistakes, and discover. BPC offers a supportive environment, helps our kids find their own voices and turns each learning moment into a memorable experience. And it is a fun school! Our daughter is at BPC almost ten hours a day and she loves every moment of it! She enters through the gate of the school skipping in the mornings and is frustrated if we pick her up early in the afternoon.”
— 4th grade parent
Black Pine Circle School is located on 7th Street, near Berkeley's Fourth Street shops and the cafe mecca of University and San Pablo Avenues.
For upcoming weekend information events, please RSVP through the school's website at http://blackpinecircle.org/visit
ADMISSIONS INFORMATION EVENTS
- Kindergarten: Saturday, November 3, 10 am – 12 pm
- 6–8: Saturday, November 3, 1 pm – 3:30 pm
- K–5: Saturday, December 1, 10 am – 12 pm
- 6–8: Saturday, December 1, 1 pm – 3:30 pm
To visit BPC while it's in session, RSVP for a tour on the school's website, http://blackpinecircle.org/visit. Tours run from 11/6 through 1/13,
- K–5: Tuesday & Thursday mornings, November 6 through mid-January
- 6–8: Wednesday & Friday mornings, November 7 through mid-January
Thanks so much to Black Pine Circle School for sponsoring 510Families.com. To schedule a tour, request an admissions packet, and to learn more about the school, please call Greta B. Wong, Director of Admissions, at 510.529.2719 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.