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Beyond the Classroom

In Upper School, class trips and clubs provide students an opportunity to engage in activities beyond the classroom that are both fun and meaningful.  As our world becomes increasingly interconnected, it is critical for our students to become more culturally aware, well-traveled, and globally-minded. Interregional and international travel experiences are often life-changing, and offer students and teachers new perspectives not only of the world around them, but also of themselves. Each year the CDS faculty plans a selection of exceptional travel and learning experiences for students in grade 9 - 12.

Grade 9 - Pathfinders

The 9th grade class has the unique opportunity to launch their high school years with an unforgettable Pathfinder experience. Pathfinder Outdoor Education delivers fun, challenging adventures that help people learn about themselves, others, and the environment, facilitated by extensively trained Pathfinder educators. The activities chosen for this 3-day overnight class trip include team building initiatives, challenge course, high ropes, canoeing, a solo experience, and a campfire. Students are accompanied by their class advisors.

Grade 10 - Boston

The sophomore class travels to Boston for an exceptional learning experience. CDS partners with WorldStrides to offer this walk through history. Students will walk in the footsteps of our presidents and explore their homes, honor the soldiers of the American Revolution and the Civil War at historic battlefields, and stand where our Founding Fathers met to write the Declaration of Independence and the U.S. Constitution. Students will also attend a performance of Blue Man Group, visit Fenway Park, and tour M.I.T. or Harvard (time permitting). The itinerary includes:

Tea is Brewing Tour
Lexington and Concord
National Heritage Museum
Old North Bridge Battle Site
Author's Row & Walden Pond
Plymouth & Plymouth Plantation
Boston Ghost Tour
Freedom Trail

This 10th grade trip provides opportunities for meaningful connections to academic studies, personal growth, adventure, and class bonding through travel. 

Dog Sledding Canada
Grades 8 - 10 - Québec City and Montréal

The French department partners with Evolve Tours to offer a biennial trip to Quebec City and Montreal in January. While this is a French enrichment opportunity, all students in Grades 8, 9 or 10 are invited to join the trip if they would like to experience French Canadian culture and snow!

Trip highlights include:

Dinner and an evening at a traditional Sugar Shack 
Live performance at the Montreal House of Jazz
Ice skating
Afternoon of volunteering
Dog sledding
Touring the historic and beautiful Montreal and Quebec City

Upper School Clubs

CDS ascribes to the requirements of the International Baccalaureate programmes for students to be involved in extra curricular activities.  This requirement takes seriously the importance of life outside the world of scholarship and provides a valuable counterbalance to academic studies. 

Student clubs are formed as  a result of student interest and initiative.  Most clubs meet weekly and while some are sustained over the years, others vary based on student interest.  Anyone wishing to initiate a club must secure a faculty advisor and approval from either the Student Advisory Board or Student Council (depending on the nature and meeting time).  All clubs have a faculty sponsor, but the responsibility of organizing and planning meetings and activities lies with the student leader(s).

There are four categories of clubs in the high school:

  • Governing Boards promote the concerns interests, needs, and welfare of the student body.
  • Honor Societies recognize students who excel academically or as leaders among their peers,
  • General Clubs are faculty sponsored programs that are open to all students.
  • Breaking Ground Clubs meet once a week and provide students the opportunity to take the initiative to create clubs and interest groups to explore their passions.