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Student Learning Executive Skills

“Find what works for you.” - Mrs. Cartwright

Learning is a joyful process filled with innovative thinking and problem solving, creativity and exploration. It is also a complex process and there are many factors that can present challenges and obstacles for students. Projects or assignments that can be exciting and intellectually stimulating can also prove to be incredibly difficult as a result of the executive skills required to execute the task at hand.  While these skills come easily to some students, many boys require explicit instruction, scaffolding and practice. At FCDS, it is important to us that students begin to understand their own learning process and find the tools and strategies that work best for them in carrying out tasks effectively to achieve their goals.
Executive Skills refer to the brain-based cognitive processes that help us regulate our behavior, make decisions, and set and achieve goals (Dawson).  Whether those goals are getting out the door in the morning on time, remembering to turn in homework, studying for a test, or working with others to complete a project-based learning assignment, executive skills have a significant impact on a student’s success and educational experience.  The following executive skills are practiced and embedded at developmentally appropriate stages throughout a student’s FCDS journey.

  • Task Initiation
  • Sustained Attention
  • Time Management
  • Response Inhibition
  • Emotional Control
  • Flexibility
  • Organization
  • Planning and Prioritizing
  • Goal-Directed Persistence
  • Metacognition

We believe that a student's educational experience is greatly enhanced when educators teach through an executive skills lens.  Students learn to be metacognitive and strategic in their approach to school, they develop a sense of self-efficacy, and are able to take ownership of their learning in any academic situation.   

Key Executive Skills  Resources:
Fairfield Country Day School (FCDS) is a private, all-boys day school in Fairfield, Connecticut.

Founded in 1936 by Laurence W. Gregory, the school has admitted only boys since its inception. As per our mission: Fairfield Country Day School provides an educational community dedicated to the development of impactful young leaders of character and purpose; ready to face the everyday challenges and pivotal turning points of their lifetime with confidence, courage and compassion. Its balanced and challenging program is designed to help each student expand his desire and ability to acquire knowledge, capture his imagination, stimulate his curiosity and creativity, and enhance his self-esteem and respect for others. Each boy’s individual growth is encouraged in an environment that anticipates the future while appreciating the past.

FCDS admits students of any race, color, national and ethnic origin to all the rights, privileges, programs, and activities generally accorded or made available to students at the school. It does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national and ethnic origin in administration of its educational policies, admissions policies, scholarship programs, and athletic and other school-administered programs.

FCDS is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer with a strong commitment to diversity and inclusion. We prohibit discrimination on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, age, national origin, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, disability, veteran status, marital status, or any other legally protected status.