When Hawken School was established in 1915 by James A. Hawken, his foremost purpose was to prepare his students for the real world. As Hawken nears its centennial mark as a school, we find ourselves in a greatly changed world; however, our commitment to forward-focused education has withstood the test of time. At Hawken, students are taught and encouraged to think creatively and critically, to explore their passions and interests, and to voice their opinions as members of a diverse and vibrant community. Our students experience an education focused not only on knowledge but on the skills and values that will prepare them for fulfilling and purposeful careers and lives.
To describe Hawken’s unique approach to teaching, learning, and the development of character, faculty and administrators developed The Hawken Method. The Hawken Method represents the application of Hawken’s Purpose, Promise and Principles
and is based on six core ideas that fundamentally shape the Hawken experience and the school’s expectations of students. Those six core ideas are as follows:
- Inspiring Relationships. Respectful and inspiring relationships are the cornerstone of the educational experience at Hawken.
- Essential Skills. Hawken’s program develops the skills essential for academic success, especially those that stress critical and creative inquiry and expression.
- Meaningful Learning. Hawken believes that learning should be meaningful. Teachers construct lessons and curriculum that clarify and expand upon students’ prior knowledge.
- Student Assessment. Student assessment is used both to measure and to guide student learning.
- Intentional Use of Time. Hawken respects student time, using it in intentional ways to maximize educational outcomes.
- Culture as a Teaching Tool. Hawken’s culture conveys its values and is among the school’s most important teaching tools.
These six core ideas, The Hawken Method, and Hawken’s Purpose, Promise and Principles guide all our efforts and are woven into the fabric of our curriculum. By the time our students graduate from Hawken, they will be ready for all the opportunities the world offers.