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Upper School

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M.S. Leadership, Ethics, and Development


The Leadership, Ethics, and Development program (LEAD) is designed to foster each student’s social, emotional, physical, and ethical growth. Through intentional and age appropriate curricula, students develop skills to confidently navigate adolescence and prepare them to be purposeful citizens in any community. Active experiences and intellectual opportunities will empower students to engage in character development, personal and peer leadership, and support a healthy school and community culture. LEAD classes are designed to address the developmental needs of each of our students as they navigate their path through adolescence. Subtopics explored in age appropriate ways each year include self-awareness, relationships, effective communication, feedback, decision making, coping strategies, ethical engagement, team building, and self-care.  In the Middle School, LEAD is delivered through Health & Wellness and Physical Education classes.
  • Sixth Grade: Breaking the Ice

    The sixth grade LEAD classes will explore the theme of “breaking the ice” as students transition into middle school and The Derryfield School community. These classes incorporate health and physical education instruction along with small group advisory meetings and larger grade-level or division-level groupings.  At the beginning of the year, the focus will be on understanding the norms and expectations of Derryfield, and developing positive relationships with peers and adults in the community. Ongoing skill development will include study skills, appropriate use of technology, respect for self and others, enjoyment of learning, challenge, and self-expression. Through experiential activities, students will build on personal and peer leadership skill development by utilizing the low ropes course, as well as team building and character building activities. The Wellness Wheel will serve as a holistic model for personal leadership and the health and well-being of the total person. The Wellness Wheel consists of the following dimensions:  physical, emotional, intellectual, vocational, social, and spiritual.
  • Seventh Grade: Embracing Community

    Seventh grade LEAD classes will explore the theme of “embracing community” as students continue to find their strength in and grow their influence in our community. These classes will help students build their resilience and grit when facing challenges in order to manage feelings of anxiety. Through experiential activities, students will build on personal and peer leadership skills by utilizing the high ropes course and rock wall, working to trust their peers, and collaborate to define and accomplish group goals. Personal reflection, personal integrity, and character development are important in all learning lessons. Ethical decision-making skills will also be taught in conjunction with the Computer Science class.
  • Eighth Grade: Self-Advocacy

    The eighth grade LEAD classes will explore the theme of “self advocacy” as students prepare for the transition to the upper school. Ongoing skill development will include communication, decision-making, appropriate use of technology, respect for self and others, and leadership within the middle school community. The goals of the program are to provide the students with accurate information on the physical and psychological effects of health-related decisions; to enhance the development of the student’s sense of personal and social responsibility; to help students see the relationship between choices and well-being; and to teach interpersonal and physical skills which will encourage and assist students in making health-enhancing decisions throughout their lives. Students will further expand their personal and peer leadership skills by utilizing the rock wall and focusing on improved communication, collaboration, and trust of themselves and their peers. In addition, students will consistently engage in open, informed dialogue addressing personal, social, and ethical issues.


The Derryfield School

2108 River Road, Manchester, NH 03104     p: 603.669.4524     f: 603.625.9715