BASIS Independent Brooklyn is coming to Downton Brooklyn! In fall 2021, a new 62,000 square-foot Lower School Campus will open at City Point (138 Willoughby Street). The new campus offers the opportunity to customize a modern, large space to the needs of Early Learning and early Primary students in Pre-K through Grade 2. After Grade 3, students would then step up to the original 100,000+ square-foot Red Hook campus.
“For the past three years we worked to find the right real estate to realize our vision for a nearby campus designed for our youngest students,” said Head of Lower School Shari D. Cameron. “Starting in fall 2021, we are excited to bring our well-rounded, globally benchmarked program to City Point in Downtown Brooklyn for the youngest learners.”
The earliest years of a child’s education are marked by meaningful discoveries and “lightbulb” moments: students are solidifying their sense of self and their relationship to the world. Our Early Learning and Primary Program is design to maximize these moments, creating a balance between a child’s natural tendencies–to question, explore, and create–and intentional academic learning. A key goal is to inspire students to delight in learning. Fostering this as early as possible leads to future academic and lifelong success.
BASIS Independent Brooklyn Lower School will boast a large, open lobby that will serve a cheery point for students each morning while also offering an area for parents to collect. Parent involvement at BASIS Independent Brooklyn revolves around committee work rather than fundraising, which is not part of our school model.
“We desire for each of our lobbies to be inviting spaces for students and parents alike,” said Ms. Cameron. “Whether parents are simply dropping students to campus in the morning, or waiting for an in-person meeting or school event, we want the lobby areas to be welcoming spaces reminding everyone that our school community is a warm and engaging place!”
While currently under construction, Willoughby Street Park will be directly across the street allowing for playdates after school and even parent coffee meet ups.
The new campus offers a great deal of light streaming into the upper floor classrooms. Spread across two separate floors, classrooms will reflect the joyous environments established at our new campus.
The curriculum helps students discover new ways of thinking and understanding the world around them through courses such as engineering and Mandarin. A weekly 85-minute course called Connections in the Primary Program presents students with scenarios that require them to put their knowledge to work in new, unexpected ways in order to find a solution. We are designing the space to help foster and encourage interdisciplinary connections.
Cafeteria and Movement Rooms
Lunch is a very important time of the day for our growing students. The cafeteria will feature our BASIS Independent Brooklyn Bear school mascot as well as the younger Lower School Cubs! We have an in-school lunch provider that offers nutritious options for students. Options are the name of the game, and lunch usually has hot options with sides as well as a cold bar, including sandwiches and salads. Vegan and vegetarian options are available.
Families may also pack a lunch, keeping in mind that we are a nut-aware school and all classrooms are nut-free.
The Lower School campus will have three separate movement rooms customized to students’ ages in Pre-K, Kindergarten, and Grades 1-2. On the campus’ lower level, the largest space for movement and gym classes will be available to students. The high ceilings offer options for climbing walls and equipment that can be used year-round. Across the street, Willoughby Street Park will be another outdoor play space for our school. The Downtown Brooklyn BID has worked tirelessly to bring more green, open spaces to the area, and they have committed to working with our school leadership to ensure our community benefits from them!
Movement/PE and recess breaks help provide outlets in between the longer sessions where teachers can delve deep into learning. For instance, the highly unique curriculum of the Primary Program is rooted in the liberal arts and sciences and emphasizes connections between disciplines. As such, in Grades 1-3, math and science are taught together in a daily 85-minute block, a daily 85-minute humanities block covers topics from history, culture, civics, grammar, and more. Students also have a full schedule in the arts, with weekly 85-minute classes in fine arts, music, and performing arts.
Art and Music Classrooms
For more information about careers with BASIS Independent Schools, visit our careers website.
This post originally appeared on the BASIS Independent Brooklyn Eureka! blog.