SAIS offers a curriculum based on United States standards developed by national organizations.

English Language Arts

All instruction at SAIS is conducted in English.  Teachers use Project-Based Learning to teach the Common Core State Standards, incorporating tools and strategies that include Reading and Writing Workshop, direct instruction in grammar and vocabulary, and Reading A-Z.  Extra English Language Learner support is available for students demonstrating that need.


Mathematics instruction at SAIS is a balanced approach between problem-solving skills, conceptual knowledge, and procedural fluency.  Mathematics is a key element in many educational projects.  SAIS uses the Engage New York Math curriculum, which is America’s top-rated math curriculum.  Students also use technology to support math learning, including Khan Academy and other educational programs


At SAIS, science is at the heart of many educational projects.  Students follow the Next Generation Science Standards by learning science processes and cross-cutting concepts in addition to content-specific knowledge.  Authentic experiments form the core of the curriculum.

Social Studies

An international school setting requires a particularly broad approach to the social studies.  Using authentic projects, SAIS teaches the American Education Reaches Out (AERO) standards, placing particular emphasis on perspective, empathy, and global citizenship.  Projects frequently result in local action on a social issue of importance.


At SAIS, every classroom is a maker space.  All students experience project-based learning, and students are afforded time in a dedicated, well-stocked maker space.

SAIS employs a full time Director of Maker Education to support teachers and students in their project-based learning.  The DME maintains the maintains the maker space, plays an active role in technology and school improvement, and provides a rich design thinking curriculum to support 21st century learning.

SAIS believes that students need to learn much more than content knowledge.  Successful persons are able to communicate, collaborate, and create.  MakerSpace supports the development of these important skills by teaching students how to implement design thinking and manage projects.  Hands-on problem solving is critical to success in the real world.

Visual Art

Visual art is part of the curriculum for all SAIS students.  As in all classes at SAIS, emphasis is placed on creative projects that meet national learning standards.  SAIS promotes a balanced approach, including opportunities to present art, respond to art, and connect art to other disciplines.


Curricular music is offered to students in grades K-8.  As with visual art, music follows the core arts standards framework of providing balanced instruction among creating, performing, responding, and connecting.  A minimum of two public performances are included as part of the required curriculum.

Physical Education

SAIS recognizes not only the need for students to be physically, mentally, and emotionally healthy, but it also recognizes important research indicating that physical education supports academic growth.  The PE program at SAIS develops motor skills, applies those skills to physical situations, teaches students to maintain their health, teaches social responsibility, and develops a mindset of life-long physical activity.


Chinese is required for all students K-8.  Students are grouped into age cohorts for scheduling, but teachers evaluate each student’s proficiency and differentiate instruction accordingly.  The curriculum develops each student’s ability to read, write, speak, and listen in Mandarin.  As with all classes at SAIS, the Chinese curriculum utilizes project-based learning as the primary method of instruction.

Nathan Abbott


SAIS is a leader in innovative education. At SAIS, we believe that students need to learn creative thinking and problem solving in order to meet the needs of the world of tomorrow. Our curriculum delivers American educational content standards through a unique combination of project-based learning, traditional methods, and Maker experiences. Our small class sizes and friendly atmosphere guarantee that your student will receive the attention that he or she needs and deserves.

We welcome you to experience the SAIS difference. Please browse our projects on the website, reach out to us via phone or email, or come to the school for a visit. We look forward to hearing from you!

Early Learning Environment (ELE) Curriculum

At SAIS the Early Learning Environment, for ages 3 to 5 years, is designed to encourage the development of the whole child. Social/Emotional, Physical and Intellectual areas of child development are fostered and will lead to happy children, as well as the acquisition of academic skills. Students will be assigned to a class based upon their readiness levels, with chronological age as one consideration. Through the use of a variety of teaching strategies, and a special emphasis on the Project Approach, in which students do long term investigations of selected topics, children enrolled in the ELE will progress in the following domains: In each area systems sustainability and the effects on our future are emphasized.

Additional Programs

Apple After School Activities

Each SAIS teacher conducts a nine week after-school activity.  These activities run from 3:30 to 4:30 pm.  Specific activities vary, based on student interest and teacher expertise.


At SAIS, there is no central library.  The second and third floors each have dedicated spaces with books and computers, and hallway bookshelves are also stocked with books.  Students are never more than a few feet from appropriate reading material.  Students also have extensive access to laptops for researching projects, and are able to access digital libraries through our technology.


Technology is often an integral part of the research needed to complete projects.  SAIS maintains an inventory of one Apple MacBook Air laptop for each student 4th grade and above.

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