Beauvoir is located on the grounds of the National Cathedral located in Washington, D.C. Head of School Paula Carreiro came to Beauvoir 19 years ago and began exploring school culture based on shared core values and individual character. A focus on the whole child and each child’s moral and social development now pervades the Beauvoir program. The school invests time and resources into both social and academic curricula. Beauvoir also emphasizes responsiveness to the needs and concerns of students, parents, and staff. The school’s associate teacher program provides two teachers in every classroom. Since about 85 percent of Beauvoir students are from dual-working-parent families, parent schedules are accommodated in many ways, particularly at drop-off time, in school communications, and for volunteer opportunities. Parents attest that Beauvoir’s approach lets them “push back” many of today’s negative influences.
Lesson Plan: The Torn Heart
Students listen to a story read aloud, thinking and reflecting about instances in the story where someone was wronged, was unfairly treated, or was not treated respectfully. Each time they feel this way, the students make a “thumbs down” gesture. Each time the students make a “thumbs down” gesture, the teacher tears a little piece of the heart cut-out that is taped to the teacher’s shirt, symbolizing how the book character feels throughout the story. The teacher conducts a classroom discussion and reflection afterwards.