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Building Brilliance through Brain Science

At BWL, we equip our students to face modern-day challenges by emphasizing the pivotal role of their brain—their most powerful tool. Understanding that the effective use of this tool is crucial, we have adopted a distinctive approach to teaching practical neuroscience across our Lower, Middle, and Upper School divisions.

Lower School


Lower School marks a crucial phase in brain development, characterized by a natural curiosity and a thirst for knowledge about the world. Offering students the chance to comprehend the intricacies of their own minds enhances this enriching period of their lives. In line with this objective, we've partnered with MindUp to introduce a new curriculum centered on mental fitness, mindfulness, and a deeper understanding of brain function. Theory and practice come together in this powerful curriculum with developmentally appropriate lessons, activities, and resources that will equip students in each grade with practical skills to enhance focus, resilience, and coping mechanisms for stress and anxiety. 

In addition to this classroom work, Lower School students also take part in regular meditation and mindfulness sessions with Head of School Bill Kuhn and experts from New York Presbyterian/Weill Cornell to build a daily practice of mindfulness that will benefit them for their entire lives. 


Middle School


The transitional years from 6th to 8th grade represent a significant period of growth in a child's life, characterized by rapid development in both their brains and bodies. While this phase can be exciting, it often poses challenges for many students. To handle the stress that can come along with this transition, Head of School Bill Kuhn leads a weekly mindfulness workshop for students to teach them how to regulate their breathing, calm their disruptive thoughts, and enter a state of focus. 

One of the biggest challenges facing students during this time is how to navigate the current landscape of technology and social media. At BWL, we view social media as a tool that, when used correctly, can be an important tool, but when used incorrectly, may pose risks. In our Middle School, we've implemented two programs to guide students in actively and healthily engaging with technology:

Our partnership with The Social Institute offers tailored programming focused on social media, imparting valuable lessons on creating online communities that foster positivity, inclusivity, and social well-being. These sessions are seamlessly integrated into our Peer Relations curriculum, featuring peer-to-peer discussions facilitated by our Upper School Prefects. Additionally, our collaboration with the Winston National Center on Technology Use, Brain, and Psychological Development brings the Teens and Tech curriculum to our Middle School. This curriculum delves into the basics of neuroscience, helping students understand how social media and technology influence brain development. By providing this knowledge, we empower students to make informed decisions about their technology use.

Upper School


In addition to engaging workshops conducted by The Social Institute, mindfulness sessions led by Mr. Kuhn, and elective courses in neuroscience for 11th and 12th grades, Upper School students at BWL enjoy a unique chance to collaborate with eminent scientists and researchers in the field of neuroscience. This collaboration is made possible through our partnership with the Winston National Center on Technology Use, Brain, and Psychological Development (WNC), and the establishment of a Teen Advisory Board.

The Teen Advisory Board is open to Upper School students through a rigorous application process and gives them the opportunity to take part in hands-on research with renowned researchers from the University of North Carolina. The primary objective of this Teen Advisory Board is to actively involve students in the WNC's research process so they can learn essential skills for research and data collection in college and beyond. By leveraging the insights provided by these students, we aim to implement a comprehensive school-wide data collection initiative, addressing fundamental research questions. Subsequently, students will have the opportunity to participate in and contribute to the data collection process, which will be utilized in the WNC's ongoing research endeavors.

Neuroscience Signature Program Partners