The Crowden School

Playing music together ignites our students’ passion to question, explore, and grow

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The Crowden School puts music in the center of an inspiring, whole-child education for students in grades 3 through 8.

Since 1983: Crowden’s innovative approach to experiential and inquiry-based learning—modeled on the collaborative art of chamber music—empowers our students to find their individual voices as they grow into confident, empathetic, and curious young leaders.

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Student doing solar science experiment

At Crowden, you will find students who are actively engaged with learning, whether they are making music or discussing books, solving equations or playing soccer.

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The communication skills and cooperation our students learn playing music together—and the fun they have while doing it—carry over to all aspects of their lives. Crowden School students are lively, curious, and confident learners.

Why Choose The Crowden School?

Intellectually engaging curriculum

The study of chamber music alongside a collaborative, whole-child academic curriculum offers our students a unique educational experience with transformative results.

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Big opportunities in small class settings

Small class sizes allow our students to thrive as individuals and to gain confidence in their own voices.

Students in classroom
Students in classroom

Big opportunities in small class settings

Small class sizes allow our students to thrive as individuals and to gain confidence in their own voices.

Fostering perseverance and grit

Through consistent practice and applied effort, students learn they can master complex musical passages—and then apply that discipline to future challenges.

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Learning to lead, and to follow

Playing music together in ensembles, students learn skills such as focused listening, practice, and perseverance, and an empathetic group dynamic.

Youth chamber music
Youth chamber music

Learning to lead, and to follow

Playing music together in ensembles, students learn skills such as focused listening, practice, and perseverance, and an empathetic group dynamic.

Social connections

The shared goal of musical performance fosters close connections for students, who form lasting friendships.

Crowden students hugging

Well-rounded experiences

Over the course of the year, students participate in a wide variety of activities, including field trips, public service, social activism, lunch-time activities like chess and knitting clubs, or our cross country or MathCounts teams.

Student playing basketball outdoors
Student playing basketball outdoors

Well-rounded experiences

Over the course of the year, students participate in a wide variety of activities, including field trips, public service, social activism, lunch-time activities like chess and knitting clubs, or our cross country or MathCounts teams.

Excellent high school placement

Our alumni are well-rounded leaders, ready to meet the artistic and intellectual challenges of the high school years and beyond.

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Results of a Crowden School Education

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Curious learners

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Critical thinkers

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Confident communicators

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Enduring friendships

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Creative problem solvers

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Excellent high school placement

Is Crowden only for children who want to become musicians?

No. The benefits of a Crowden education support a wide variety of future career choices. Crowden alumni excel in careers in fields ranging from business to academia, medicine to the arts.

What if my child has never played an instrument?

That’s OK! We welcome beginners on string instruments (violin, viola, cello, double bass) into all grade levels, no experience required. All piano candidates are expected to demonstrate facility with sight-reading.

Where do Crowden students go to high school?

Crowden School alumni are well-rounded individuals and confident leaders, ready to meet the artistic and intellectual challenges of the high school years and beyond. Their leadership and creative problem-solving skills are highly valued by all major private and public college preparatory high schools, where they excel. Recent high school choices include: Albany High School, Athenian School, Bentley School, Berkeley High School, College Preparatory School, Head Royce School, Lick-Wilmerding, Marin Academy, Maybeck High School, and San Domenico School.

Will my child have time to pursue their other interests outside of school?

Yes. Outside of their school days at Crowden, our students tend to participate in a rich variety of extracurricular activities other than music, including sports, dance, theater, scouting, and others. Classmates regularly support one another outside of school by attending each other's soccer games, dance recitals, and other endeavors--bringing the camaraderie they create together at Crowden outside the classroom and performance hall. Although attending The Crowden School definitely requires instrument practice time, that doesn't stop our students from diving into their other interests, as deeply as they wish.

The Crowden School admits students of any race, color, national and ethnic origin, sexual orientation, and gender identity or expression 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, religion, disability, sexual orientation, or gender identity or expression in administration of its educational policies, admissions policies, scholarship and loan programs, and athletic and other school-administered programs.

Crowden is committed to creating a diverse environment, and we value our inclusive community of students, parents, and faculty and staff of all backgrounds. Together, we celebrate our many differences and unite in our shared love of music of all kinds and origins.

Our 40th anniversary continues with Fry Street Quartet!» Sunday, March 3
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