Experiential Education and Intersession

-Harrison, Class of 2014

“As a Norwood student there are trademark events that everyone knows of for each grade. For seventh and eighth grade, Intersession is one of them. It is something to look forward to, something to look back on, and a great time to take a break in the middle of the year. I had unique experiences I would never have had and am glad that at Norwood I could have this opportunity that I couldn't have had at another school.”

Experiential Trips

Norwood students take several field trips every year to support the classroom curriculum. Most excursions off campus are day trips to locations that enhance instruction, such as the Kennedy Center, KID Museum, and the Holocaust Museum, to name just a few. Beginning in fourth grade, students go on one overnight trip per year. Examples include overnight camping trip for grades 4-6 to promote community building and focus on individual and team challenges, for fifth and sixth graders, and a trip to Philadelphia for seventh graders to enrich their study of American history. The experiential education program culminates in eighth grade with a three-day trip to New York City tied to their study of 20th century history.


Intersession is a four-day period early in the second semester during which seventh and eighth grade students take a break from regular academics to participate in a variety of one- and two-day activities. Year after year, students cite Intersession as one of the highlights of the Norwood middle school experience. While it may be just one short week out of the year, Intersession is a powerful way to enhance relationships with teachers, deepen friendships with peers, and expand the joyful learning that is central to Norwood’s mission and educational philosophy. From observing open-heart surgery to learning about the intricacies of cake decorating (and many things in between), the Intersession program features a diverse and exciting line-up of experiential learning opportunities, both on- and off-campus, designed to open minds and hearts to possibilities.

Click here for photos taken during Intersession 2024. 

Program Goals:

· Experience learning beyond the boundaries of the School;
· Build new and different relationships with classmates and teachers;
· Develop social skills and teamwork as they apply to world outside the School;
· Provide an opportunity to develop skills and gain confidence in a non-classroom setting.

William '15

"We get to learn about things that will make us smarter in a different way than the usual way."

Sample Intersession Program

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  • One-Day Courses

    Teacher for a Day
    Chinese Day
    Nationals Park
    Old School Cake Decorating
    Medical Mysteries
    Games of Chance
    Paper Creations
    Music and Tours
    Agent or Spy...Only Time Will Tell!
    National Great Blacks in Wax Museum
    Round House Theatre & Imagination Stage
    National Air and Space Museum
    Sewing: Creating an Applique Fabric Image
    Women in Sports
    Natural History Museum
    National Institutes of Health
    Remembering Vietnam
    Codes and Codebreaking; History and Uses
    Let's Make a Movie
    Animals and Animals in Art
    Dial "H" for Hitchcock
    Phone Photography 101
    Chocolate, Then and Now
    Marine Corps Museum
    Old Town Alexandria
    Exploring the Potter's Wheel and Hand Building with Clay
    A Day at the Folger Shakespeare Museum
    The Game of Life, Sort Of
    Behind the Scenes at NPR
    Boards, Boards, Boards
    History Observed and History Preserved
    Hot and Cold
    Painting with Oils
    Get Creative! Get Connected! Get Coding!
    Bureau of Engraving and Printing
    Hillwood Museum and Estate

  • Two-Day Course

    Heart Surgery at Fairfax Inova Hospital

Located in Bethesda, MD, Norwood School develops students in grades PK-8 into confident lifelong learners who have the academic, character, and leadership skills to succeed in high school and beyond. Recognizing that children are multi-faceted, Norwood provides many opportunities for safe risk-taking, exploration, discovery, and growth in a nurturing, supportive, and inclusive school community.