Prisma is the world’s most engaging virtual school that combines a fun, real-world curriculum with powerful mentorship from experienced coaches and a supportive peer community.
Prior to Prisma, we were part of a vibrant homeschooling community. We did classes together and weekly nature meetups. Most of our academic learning was done on our own. Some of that learning included Outschool classes. During covid, my kids did even more Outschool classes. They really enjoyed the classes, but felt it would be better if you could have the same kids in the classes together. Once in person activities started again, my 11 year old daughter began asking for more academic work. We had used different curriculums, but she wanted more. I started to do research and looked into micro schools, but then found Prisma.
The learning experience was very natural. A lot of it was through experiences, and trying to be child driven. But we also did some school at home with reading/writing curriculum, those were not as enjoyable. The biggest challenges we were facing was not knowing how the kids were progressing, and also feeling like their entire education rested on my shoulders.
After reading about Prisma, I talked with Victoria, and everything she described sounded exactly like what we wanted. I was really only looking for something for Matilda, who was 11 at the time, but both of my children wanted to try out a sample workshop. When they tried the workshop, it was over, they both loved it! Henry was so enthusiastic about joining that I signed both of them up.
My hope when joining Prisma was that they would have fun learning and that our family would be inspired by the projects. My only real concern was technology. I have always been scared of my kids using technology. They never watched kids shows or did video games, but that changed a bunch with covid. I was worried about them spending a lot of time on computers, but his concern fell away very quickly as I found that they were learning how to responsibly use technology as a tool.
The first big surprise for me was the amazing team I would get to help me. I didn’t feel so alone when it came to supporting my kids' academic education. And second was the way that my kids would learn how to responsibly use technology as a tool. But best of all is the amazing ability they have grown to build relationships online that translate when they meet in person. Being able to build teams remotely is going to be a priceless skill for their entire life.
Our entire family has grown so much. We have improved how we communicate with each other, become more open minded, and learned how to manage meetings better. And we have all changed our perspectives by incorporating the Prisma powers into our everyday life.
Matilda's biggest areas of growth were in leadership and writing. She has always been a leader, but she has really had the opportunity to lead groups while at Prisma. And she has really embraced writing. She went from only wanting to write a simple paragraph in the first cycle to choosing to write a book in the last cycle. I was so shocked when she chose that option for her project.
Henry’s biggest growth area has been getting comfortable with public speaking and speaking up for himself. When he started, he was too nervous to put his camera on when it was a big group. He didn’t want to do Expo day. But the coaches met him where he was and brainstormed ways he did want to participate. They were so understanding and made him so comfortable. By the time Cycle 4 Expo Day came around, Henry was so excited for it that he was literally dancing.
We have had two favorite themes. The first cycle was Uncharted Territories. The books the kids read and the different ways of thinking were so much fun. Henry created an art deco advertisement for a settlement on Mars. He was exposed to the idea of future jobs including being a chef in space. And his diorama and video he made was awesome. The second favorite was Unsolved Mysteries. The history the kids learned about and how they came up with their own theories to present was fun to watch.
Kristi is an amazing mentor to all of us. For the kids, she has a special way of inspiring and supporting them in a way where they can really show their personalities in their work. The learning coaches are the key to Prisma’s success.
My kids have made friends at Prisma. The first time we ever did an in person meetup, you could see the amazing community that was being made. As soon as people saw us coming, they were enthusiastically waving hi. There was no awkwardness. The kids just jumped right in to having fun. And that hasn’t changed. Every time we get to spend time with these amazing kids, the experience is invaluable.
My entire family has become more confident in how we are doing overall. We are engaged and have a better sense of where we are going. And we are never lacking for inspiration.
Middle School Curriculum Designer Lizzie uses her diverse experiences: studying Literature at Harvard, leading outdoor adventure expeditions, and teaching high school English, to help Prisma learners find their voices.
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Middle School Curriculum Designer Gabe, an expert in interdisciplinary learning with a PhD from the University of Michigan, explains how he designs themes that blend together STEM and literacy.
One of the most fun parts of being a homeschooling parent is creating fun learning experiences for your kiddos! In this post, we share our favorite at-home activities and online resources.
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One of the reasons our team wanted to develop a new kind of school was because we felt traditional schooling doesn’t put enough emphasis on developing emotionally intelligent kids. But what is emotional intelligence and how do you develop it?
"Carolyn is a miracle worker in math. Piper's attitude towards math has improved so much this year. It's never been her favorite subject but Carolyn's patience and encouragement has made such a positive impact." -Alexia A., Prisma parent
Media literacy is touted as one of the most important “21st century skills” for kids to master, in line with creativity, communication, and grit. Thinking through the amount of time most of us spend interacting with some form of media each day makes a good case for this.
“Lauren is fantastic and has struck a nice balance of connecting with Cooper and keeping him on task. I'm impressed to see real growth in Cooper around self awareness, reflecting on his “glows and grows,” and goal setting.” -Kym J., Prisma parent
“I've seen growth in my kids, and most importantly a solid relationship between them and their coaches. We feel so grateful for these amazing humans that have entered our kids' lives. My kids' words exactly: ‘These teachers actually want to be here. They really care!’ ” -Katie M., Parent in Kimberly’s Cohort
By introducing these concepts at home, you're setting your child up to be more financially responsible and savvy, giving them the tools to navigate an increasingly complex financial world.
“I’m so happy to have an opportunity to call out Javi. As a math educator myself I am really impressed with how he presents math concepts, differentiates for and challenges learners as needed. From a social-emotional perspective he is so kind, patient and invested in the kids as a whole. I am so happy he is Brynn’s math coach.” -Chandra S., Prisma parent
The ability to tolerate frustration is not merely about weathering the storm of the moment, but about instilling the persistence, adaptability, and resilience that set your child up for future success.
“We are eternally grateful for Prisma and the wonderful people who work there - especially the coaches - whose patience and expertise make our kids feel seen and heard and loved while also coaching them to learn knowledge and skills.” -Ashley S., Parent in Angie’s cohort
We are thrilled to announce that Prisma has earned accreditation from the Cognia Global Education Commission.
Online program? Good old-fashioned workbooks? A mix? Let’s help you unpack the options.
"Thank you for the bottom of our hearts for showing Story what it means to show up and do the hard work.” -Jenna W, Prisma Parent
Your unique way of processing the world brings with it challenges and rewards that color your parenting journey.
“Kristi sent Madeline a little note saying how much she likes seeing Madeline everyday, and Madeline grinned from ear to ear. Certainly a nice reminder of how different the relationship has been between coach and student compared to what we saw in public school.” -Pamela D., Prisma Parent
Many people assume advanced intellectual ability sets kids up for success in school, so when gifted kids struggle, it can be confusing for educators and parents.
“Despite Levi’s frustrations with science in the past, he had the most ambitious projects for Anne’s class. I love that she was able to inspire him!” -Joy J., Prisma parent
“Cindy is AMAZING! I’m so blown away by her accommodations, reprioritizing Parker’s to do lists, and always providing tons of encouragement. I’m knocked off my socks everytime I overhear her doing anything, really.” -Priscilla W., Prisma Parent
“Natalie is so amazing and Karl has become very close with her. This year has seen Karl expand in his learning very much." -Anna H., Prisma parent
“Gwyn has been so wonderful to Jack. She is so relatable and authentic and really kind. She immediately bonded with him, and has really given him the freedom to be creative and take risks. She has made education and the whole "school experience" a safe place for him. With her support and encouragement, she has really made him thrive.” -Wren W., Prisma parent
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Kristen Shroff is an experienced educational leader who has been with Prisma from the very beginning, first as a Founding Curriculum Designer & then as Head of School. Now, as CEO, she will lead Prisma into its next stage of growth.
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In our Meet the Team blog series, you’ll get to read more about the innovative thinkers behind Prisma. Next up is Emily Veno, one of Prisma's Founding Curriculum Designers. After two years focused on building Prisma's middle school curriculum, in her new role as Head of Learning Innovation she works across both the middle & high school programs.
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At Prisma, we believe the families and learners who like to call themselves Prismarians—are our ‘secret sauce’! Here we highlight one of our favorite stories from the Prisma community
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