All students take music and art at least once a week. In music, all middle school students choose to participate in either band or chorus and see their skills develop throughout each year, as they work towards two concerts per year.

Previous Slide
Next Slide


The Mathematics curriculum at The Ethical Community Charter School encourages students to analyze, plan, solve, and reflect. Students explore mathematics through independent investigations, reflective problem-solving, group discussion, and mathematical writing. Our math program integrates the use of manipulatives, technology, and project-based learning to allow all types of academic learners to fully explore and grasp mathematical concepts.

Grades K-8 work use Math in Focus, an authentic Singapore Math curriculum, with problem-solving as the center of math learning. Teachers use the CRA (Concrete, Representation, Abstract) approach to ensure a deep understanding of mathematical concepts. Concepts and problems are first introduced with hands-on experiences and the use of manipulatives, then visualized and represented in a picture, and finally in numbers and symbols. Math in Focus exposes students to algebraic concepts as early as kindergarten. This is a crucial element that will help us reach our goal of enrolling all eighth grade students in Algebra.



Trough the Elementary School math curriculum students understand and practice math concepts such as arithmetic operations, fractions, decimals, place value, measurement, and data analysis. Students are also introduced to the foundations of Geometry, as they explore lines and shapes in 1, 2, and 3-dimensions. Our pedagogical approach allows our students to use mathematical manipulatives and technology to kinesthetically and visually understand math concepts.


The Middle School math curriculum builds on the strengths of the elementary school curriculum by further integrating technology with mathematics. The Middle School math program also uses project-based learning to allow students to explore topics of their own interest. Students ask questions, collect and analyze data, and present the results and the story behind data to their own class. They express their own mathematical ideas by participating in group discussions and creating reflective math essays. And students apply mathematical concepts through real-world assignments, such as researching a future job and creating a budget based on salary or applying knowledge of ratios to alter recipes from a cookbook.  At TECCS we currently offer smaller class sizes in middle school math, and have incorporated an accelerated math class in grades 6,7, and Algebra in 8th grade.  



All students have a natural desire to investigate and question the world around them. Our students learn and behave like scientists and engineers when asking questions about our universe. Our classes focus on hands-on, inquiry-based, and problem-based experiences. Our goal is to have students ask questions that matter to them and to give them the tools to answer them. Our curriculum spirals in an effort to give our students a more sophisticated understanding of each concept over many years and allows for the integration of science with other subject areas. As our students gain more scientific knowledge, they may then focus on the complex ethical dilemmas presented by human interaction with the natural world.


The TECCS Science Curriculum develops the following skills in our students:

  • Asking questions and defining problems

  • Developing and using models

  • Planning and carrying out investigations

  • Analyze and interpret data

  • Using mathematical and computational thinking

  • Constructing explanations and designing solutions

  • Engaging in argument from evidence

  • Obtaining, evaluating, and communicating information

At TECCS, our science curriculum is aligned to the Next Generation Science Standards adopted by New Jersey and aligned to Common Core State Standards. The NGSS describes what each student should know in the four domains of science: physical science; life science; earth and space science; and engineering, technology, and science application.


At TECCS, Social Studies plays a major role in the development of civic-minded students and serves as the backbone of many of our PBL units. Students learn about cultures from around the world and throughout history. They are taught about cooperation and conflict among groups of people as a result of migration, differing belief systems, and competition for natural resources. This leads to conversations about respect toward people of all backgrounds and allows for ethical debates.



K-4 students learn fundamental concepts about government, citizenship, geography, economics, and history. Our teachers focus on developing an understanding of core democratic values, the rights and responsibilities of American citizens, and how key people and events contributed to the development of the American heritage. In kindergarten, the focus is the individual and our community. Students participate in activities to promote cultural awareness, sensitivity to individual differences, and respect for diversity. As the students get older, teachers expand the scope of their teaching to more global challenges. By 3rd and 4th grade, students begin to explore and analyze universal issues such as the availability of resources, the changing environment, and innovation.


In grades 5-8, students build upon the foundational content and begin to analyze how government structures and economic policies affect individuals, communities, nations, and global relationships. We use the History Alive textbook series as a source of background information for students to use as they complete project-based assignments. Students connect to current issues that promote service learning to empower students to become more socially active. All grades complete weekly current events assignments to help them practice reading and analyzing various texts and to assist them in drawing conclusions between historical events and modern society.


Arts Elementary

As children learn to read and grapple with textual complexity, we guide them to a balanced approach to literacy that incorporates a blend of phonics and the “whole language” approach, depending on an individual child’s strengths at any given moment. Children gain reading fluency at highly variable and individualized steps and rates. They make huge leaps in a week, then practice for months. Critical to lifelong literacy and fluency is early and continued exposure to print and books.

To this end, teachers in early grades use authentic texts to build both comprehension and phonetic skills, while the Teachers College Writers Workshop structure allows students to generate stories and books based on their own experiences. Each child is regularly assessed to determine his or her own reading level, and students work in groups and independently to read texts that encourage both mastery and growth.

As part of helping children build persistence, self-regulation, and independent reading strategies, TECCS uses a classroom literacy structure called The Daily Five. The Daily Five design allows for student choice and teacher flexibility within a clear and predictable structure. In the reading block, children choose to Read to Self, Read to Someone, Work on Writing, Work on Word Work, or Listen to Reading. While students are engaged in these activities, the teacher meets with small groups or individuals. These components allow for individually targeted instruction and shared comprehension-building experiences.

English Language


In grades 5-8, students build upon the foundational content and begin to analyze how government structures and economic policies affect individuals, communities, nations, and global relationships. We use the History Alive textbook series as a source of background information for students to use as they complete project-based assignments. Students connect to current issues that promote service learning to empower students to become more socially active. All grades complete weekly current events assignments to help them practice reading and analyzing various texts and to assist them in drawing conclusions between historical events and modern society.


The Health and Physical Education curriculum at TECCS focuses on preparing students to lead an active and productive lifestyle. We believe that a quality Health/PE program is essential to promote the general health and wellness of all students. Our curriculum is aligned with the NJ State Standards, as well as the National Sexuality Education Standards.

The TECCS Health

PE curriculum seeks to:

  • -Develop motor skills that allow for safe, successful, and satisfying participation in physical activities.

  • -Develop the whole child by promoting good character through providing students with opportunities to assume leadership roles, cooperate with others, and work as a team.

  • -Teach students to accept responsibility for their own behavior and resolve issues with others through modeled problem solving techniques.

  • -Guide students in maintaining physical, social, and emotional health by practicing healthy behaviors and goal setting.

  • -Engage students in a physically active lifestyle.

  • -Show students how to access and evaluate health resources.

  • -Educate students to recognize the influence of media, technology, and culture in making informed health-related decisions as a consumer of health products and services.

  • -Help children become more confident, assertive, independent, and self-controlled through effective communication, problem solving, negotiation, and conflict resolution skills.

  • -Guide students in accepting and respecting individual, family, and cultural differences.

  • -Model ways to advocate for personal, family, community, and global wellness.

  • -Reinforce the CARES Guidelines through discussion and role playing.

Students at TECCS receive 45 minutes of Health and 45 minutes of PE instruction per week, with an additional 30 minutes of recess per day. Our PE teachers and recess aides have been trained by Playworks staff to make the most of recess time. Playworks is a national nonprofit that helps schools create recess and play environments where every child can safely participate. We believe that through play, kids learn to make friends, solve problems, and believe in themselves.


Students take Spanish once a week in elementary school, with opportunities to deepen their language study in middle school through the Spanish club. Students learn language skills in lower grades through play, games, songs, grammar study, and guided activities. Middle school students take regular assessments and develop extensive projects.

Class photo


The TECCS technology curriculum provides students with an opportunity to construct and interpret data and to present ideas and research on a variety of platforms through the use of technology. Students also learn to navigate the online world by making smart choices about information presented on the Internet and by becoming ethically responsible digital citizens. Students learn how to use technology to research, create, and/or modify the information; how to use collaborative online tools to draft texts and share information; legal and ethical guidelines for using the Internet and digital resources; an awareness of the careers that involve a proficient use of technology; proper word processing and keyboarding skills; as well as coding skills through applications such as Scratch and Osmo.

The TECCS curriculum is aligned to the NJ Core Curriculum Content Standards in Education Technology. Starting in Kindergarten, students receive 45 minutes of technology class each week. Teachers also have access to Apple TV, MacBooks for small groups, several carts with class sets of computers, and iPads to support in-class assignments and assessments. Additionally, every homeroom has a Smart Board.


At TECCS, we focus on projects, writing, presentations, and how we treat one another as means of assessing student learning and growth. Middle school students participate in their own assessment on the CARES report card, while elementary students set personal learning goals at the beginning of the year. Interim formative assessments are set by the classroom teacher and provide important feedback on student learning.

As a public school, TECCS administers statewide NJSLA assessments to all students in grades 3-8 in the spring. Our results are published on our website and on the state’s data portal. In addition, students take internal iReady assessments in the fall and spring, to measure individual growth over time and to provide important feedback for classroom instructors.

Students preparing for high school entry exams have extra resources through the guidance department, including practice tests and extra preparation sessions.

Group Picture


In spring 2017, TECCS graduated its first 8th grade class. More than 90% of students went to one of their top two school choices.

Information for prospective parents and students:

Portfolio planning: Students begin portfolio planning in the 2nd trimester of their 7th grade year. Students work with advisors to create a draft portfolio that can be modified/adapted to different school applications. Students continue working on their portfolios in the summer prior to their 8th grade year so that their portfolios will be completed prior to the high school application season in the fall of their 8th grade year.

Test prep: TECCS arranges test prep classes for 7th graders, to assist students in preparing to take the PSAT, COOP/HSPT, SSAT, and ISEE exams.

High school applications: Students complete high school applications for local Jersey City and Hudson County schools in the fall of their 8th grade year. Students also apply to regional private and parochial schools and receive significant scholarships. Students are matched with an advisor who assists them in determining their top choice schools and navigating the application process. Parents receive information and frequent reminders of open house dates as well as application deadlines and testing procedures.


High School 101: Current 8th grade students in the process of applying to local high schools can access our “High School 101” spreadsheet, which contains answers to frequently asked questions about the high school application process, as well as details of the procedures for signing up for PSAT and COOP/HSPT exams, school codes for private schools, and other info. It also contains a timeline of dates (application deadlines, dates of open houses, etc.), as well as info on each of the local area schools. Families obtain this information through the student’s high school advisor.