Our curriculum is organized around Learning Expeditions, long-term, in-depth studies of a single topic that explore vital guiding questions. They incorporate standards and involve fieldwork, service and research, culminating in a project, product or performance. Expeditions require strong habits of work and quality thinking that come through the daily rituals of reading, writing, research, problem solving, and discussion. Individual and group projects are designed to unify and ignite student learning by calling for concrete products or actions that address authentic problems, typically with a component of social or environmental justice. In past expeditions, students explored topics ranging from Portland’s Working Waterfront to Ancient Greece, from Flu Pandemics to the BP Oil Spill; they investigated questions from “How and why do I change the world?” to “What is the impact of a generation?”

Listen below to excerpts from a WGAN radio piece in June 2012 about learning expeditions at Casco Bay High School. The first clip focuses on learning expeditions more generally, and the second clip focuses on a particular learning expedition – the Junior Journey.