Pushing the Boundaries of our Curriculum with MSON
Did you know that we offer a robust curriculum of online courses for Upper School students through the Malone Schools Online Network
? Each year, participation in these classes grows as the word gets out about how our students can expand their interests beyond our regular Severn curriculum. Recently a panel of Severn MSON students shared their experiences with the online program — from course content to scheduling and everything in between.
Who Can Take These Classes?
Most MSON classes are structured for 11th and 12th graders. Any student who wants to apply for the program must have a strong desire to do great work along with a particular sense of personal responsibility. Students apply at the beginning of April each year and are notified of their acceptance in the program by the end of the month. We encourage students to cross-reference the Malone Course Catalog and our regular Upper School schedule when choosing courses. Once a student has applied and been accepted, the schedule cannot be changed. Students can find the application and schedules in their advisory groups in mySevern. Click here for a list of MSON FAQs
Student Perspectives on the Malone Program
The great thing about these classes is that the experience is unique for every student. So far, fifty Severn students have participated in the program, some taking several courses. They've had the opportunity to meet students from around the country and learn from different teachers all while taking ownership of their own education. Their words say it best.Meghan Behr
'19 shared her experience balancing the workload between Severn classes and MSON.
“I’m taking Environmental Bioethics and we discuss ethics of environmental issues like global warming and genetically modified organisms. We have some projects and some reading outside of class but it’s largely discussion-based. Going into this I thought I’d have less time to do homework for my other classes but I chose to take a free period so I can get all my homework done during the day with my MSON class after school on Tuesdays and Fridays.” Grace Fieni
'18 talked about what it was like to work with classmates in the online setting rather than face-to-face.
“I took Multivariable Calculus. Our class is larger than most, we started with 19 people, and it’s based based out of the Maret school in D.C. One worry that I had going into it was that I wouldn't really get to know my class because even though you see them live on the screen, it's not the same as in person. Our teacher was really great though. He made sure we got to know each other. On a Monday that Severn had off but Malone didn’t, we rode the Metro to D.C. to meet everyone at the Maret school.” Jimmy Diamondidis
'18 explained how to manage conflicts between MSON and our regular Severn class schedule.
“At the very beginning of the year you have to sit down with your planner and figure out every time you’re going to miss even ten minutes of your regular classes. You make a list and send it to your teachers so they have it in advance. I took two MSON classes, Organic Chemistry and Multivariable Calculus, but it was never a problem missing my regular classes because one was during lunch and the other was after school. I’ve had a great, great experience with MSON. My math class this year is my favorite class I’ve ever taken. My teacher is amazing and I’ve become great friends with all the kids. I definitely recommend MSON!” Aidan Wang
'18 discussed the content of his MSON class to give our students a glimpse into the advanced curriculum options available through the program.
“I’m taking ‘Are We Rome?’ a class that compares the Roman Republic and the Roman Empire to the modern United States. This class has been really interesting. It’s a mix of political science and history. We study Latin writers who wrote about the condition of the Roman States and compare that to the reasoning behind the framing of the Constitution. We have debates about how the US should be run based on these ancient writers. It’s a lot of reading, we are assigned thirty pages for each class twice a week and then we discuss and debate during class time. It’s a 10 person class so it’s pretty close knit.”
Want to Learn More?
Visit our website to learn more about MSON
including a short video about the program, participating schools, and the current course catalog. Contact our Director of Studies and Strategic Initiatives
Ms. Lise Charlier if you have any specific questions. In addition to offering these classes for our students, several of our faculty teach Malone classes for participating schools
We are committed to helping this program grow for the benefit of our students and the larger educational community. As Upper School English and MSON teacher Ms. Julia Maxey put it, “This is a phenomenal opportunity for our school. Both for us to offer classes and for our kids to take them. I think this is what the future will look like and this experience prepares us for that.”