Academic Program Overview

Watershed School offers an intellectually challenging program which encourages students to strive for personal growth and to make meaningful connections and contributions to the world around them.

Curriculum Overview

The curriculum provides a broad foundation in the humanities and sciences, develops critical and creative thinking, focuses on competence in oral and written communication as well as quantitative operations, and builds a learning environment designed to stimulate intellectual courage.   Our unique approach to teaching and learning balances the academic rigor of many of the best secondary schools in the country with a school culture that nurtures a deeply-held trust in and respect for one another.  Classes are small, usually less than 10 students, and have a strong focus on instilling effective intellectual habits, leadership and responsibility.

Watershed School offers a challenging, college preparatory academic program in the Sciences, Humanities, and the Arts which includes four years each of English, Science, History, Math, and a variety of subjects in the Arts. Seniors undertake a Graduation Project that draws on all of their intellectual, creative, and organizational skills. Our small size provides students with the support and flexibility to create electives and develop independent studies or field experiences that challenge and support their interests.  In addition, we enroll a number of international students, and many of our local students choose to study abroad.

Culture of Teaching and Learning
All teachers meet one-on-one with students at least once a month to coach, survey potential interests in the study area, and elicit feedback on the teaching and learning in the classroom.
Students are encouraged to learn how to learn through in-class, supported, individual projects at least once per semester, as well as during project week, and the culminating experience of senior project.
An emphasis on the value of perseverance, effective practice, failure, and incremental growth is paired with teacher-provided opportunities to experience, learn, and reflect on their skill development.  All students are exposed to this training through purposeful programs that include a Foundational Skills class, All School meeting, Student-Teacher-Parent Conferences, and Advising.
Students are provided opportunities to make decisions about their life at Watershed School.  In this process, students are coached to develop productive, interactive, and collaborative decision-making skills required for active participation as citizens.
Course Offerings

Watershed School offers a comprehensive set of academic courses each year.  In addition to the core, academic program, Watershed students generate a list of electives each spring that they would like to see offered the following year.  In this way, our program is uniquely responsive to student interest and desire to learn. 


  • Introduction to Scientific Observation (Meteorology, Astronomy, Field Ecology)
  • Chemistry
  • Biology
  • Physics
  • Global Climate Change


  • Algebra I
  • Algebra II
  • Geometry/Advanced Geometry
  • Pre-Calculus
  • Calculus


  • English I- Writing and Composition/ 19th century literature
  • English II- Shakespeare / Poetry
  • English III- 20th century Modernists / World Literature
  • English IV – Author and Period Studies linked to the Camden Conference


  • World Civilizations
  • Modern World History / Current Events
  • United States History
  • Senior Seminar linked to Camden Conference

Foreign Languages:

  • Spanish I, II, III, IV
  • French and Latin**

*Russian Literature and Russian History were offered to correspond with The Camden Conference, an international affairs conference held in Camden each year. This senior level course changes from year to year based on the conference topic.

**Enrollment fluctuations in these classes may require an additional fee.

Electives include but are not limited to the following:

  • Intro to Design I/ Advanced Design II
  • Theater
  • Metalsmithing
  • Ethics
  • Photography
  • African Drumming
  • Cooking
  • Sculpture
  • Music Composition
  • Studio Art
  • Ceramics