The Salk School’s mission is to take advantage of young people’s natural curiosity and to engage them in learning that is personally meaningful, socially responsible and academically rigorous. Our goal is to help students develop the habits of mind of various experts and become lifelong learners who are reflective, creative and independent thinkers by having them engage with powerful ideas across the content areas. Additionally, we help students think critically and solve problems to improve their communities. Committed to excellence and equity, we seek to prepare all students for the challenges of the 21st century.
We work with a number of professionals in the field of science and take advantage of the numerous cultural institutions in New York City in order to empower students with the knowledge and practice to behave and think like scientists. According to Bruce Alberts, Editor-in-Chief of Science magazine, “scientists share a common way of reaching conclusions that is based not only on evidence and logic, but also requires honesty, creativity, and openness to new ideas.” Students leave Salk understanding that science is a way of making sense of the natural world through observation, experimentation, and an open and critical exchange of ideas. Additionally, students leave appreciating that science ideally is humanity’s attempt to make the world better for all living things and to ensure the health of our planet.
We work to foster the skills and habits that ensure this mindset, which include:
- being open to new ideas
- developing and asking questions
- identifying problems
- formulating hypotheses and making predictions
- collecting and organizing evidence
- using logic and evidence to support claims
- maintaining a skeptical attitude
- synthesizing, analyzing, and evaluating information
- considering and evaluating alternatives
- communicating conclusions effectively through writing, speaking, and use of technology