Curriculum Overview

       At Dalton Academy, we cultivate Chinese and global citizens who have the courage to face any challenge. We adopt the task-based learning method of the famous early 20th century educator Helen Parkhurst. Today, her Dalton Plan is the foundation of global education.



Targets of our curriculum:

  1. Focus on teaching process and details, developing critical thinking and the spirit of exploration.

  2. Provoke curiosity, and cultivate life-long learning capabilities;

  3. Cultivate senses of collaboration, leadership and responsibility;

  4. We encourage students to discover themselves, challenge themselves, and strive for self-growth.

Bilingual liberal arts education: Seminars of 15-20 students, encouraging students to participate in critical discussions that are advocated by top liberal arts colleges. Meanwhile, our rigorous mathematics and science courses fully integrate advantages of Chinese educational methods blended with diversified experimental learning.


Research Focused

Project-based Learning

Writing-based Learning 

Socratic Seminars 

Harkness  Methodology 

Multicultural and interdisciplinary diversified education: we utilize the linguistic skills of our faculty and students to encourage the multicultural and interdisciplinary research. We lead students to read Eastern and Western classic literature, while exploring communication barriers that have risen among these cultures. Similarly, Dalton breaks through traditional disciplinary

boundaries through close communication with our diverse faculty, a variety of elective courses, and learning through student led projects.

Experiential learning and service to society: we encourage our students to fully utilize learning opportunities around us in order to deepen their personal exploration, growth in experiential learning and service to society.

Independent and active learning and research: Just like Parkhurst, we attach great importance to developing students' curiosity and autonomy. What students continue to experience throughout their learning is an open research process: students are guided by their teachers to come up with ideas, conduct research, implement plans, reflect on the process, and restart. Students will spend the last two years working on a variety of independent research projects and participating in a wide range of elective courses.


Dalton students are given a broad scope of course offerings ranging from The Middle East Refugee Crisis to Board Game Design and Physics for Space Engineering. Students are given the freedom to choose their own academic path as we prepare them for a future of choices.

Elective Courses - Mathematics

  • Mathematics

  • Game Theory

  • Artificial Intelligence

  • Project-based Calculus

  • Statistics

  • Mathematical Modeling

  • Discrete Math

  • Econometrics

Elective Courses - Liberal Arts

  • Post-Colonial Afro-feminist Thought

  • Empire and Literature

  • Where the World is Construct: Fantasy Fiction Writing

  • Deconstructing Creativity

  • Education Theory and Practice

  • Theatre Theory

  • Film Studies

  • Food Writing

  • Hispanic Literature and Poetry

  • Accelerated Spanish Language and Cultures

  • French 1 and 2

Elective Course - Chinese Liberal Arts

  • Chinese Arts and Culture

  • Society and Culture in the Tang and Song Dynasties

  • Linguistics: Buzzwords in Chinese Internet Culture

  • Presenting Facts in Good Faith: Nonfiction Writing

  • Cross-cultural Exchanges and the Silk Road

Elective Course - Sciences

  • Animal Behavior

  • Marine Biology

  • Biochemistry Lab X

  • Immunology

  • Organic Chemistry

  • Optic Engineering

  • Mass Systems, Rigid and Field Physics

  • Wave, Thermal and Modern Physics

  • Advanced Inorganic Chemistry

Elective Course - Arts

  • Creative Writing for the Stage

  • Theatre Practicum: Create Direct Perform

  • Graffiti Art

  • Service Learning Through the Arts

  • Digital Photography

  • Studio Art 1 and 2

Core Requirements

  • English Liberal Art

  • Chinese Liberal Arts

  • Integrated Math 

  • World Cultures and Civilizations

  • Microscopic and Macroscopic Biology

  • Theoretical and Physical Chemistry

  • Chemistry: Revolution in Human Civilization

  • Project-Based Mechanics and Electromagnetism

  • Writing Workshop

  • The Independent Research Project

Elective Courses-Global Studies

  • Elective Courses

  • Global Studies

  • Madness in Civilization

  • Patterns of Human Violence

  • U.S. History

  • The Middle East Refugee Crisis

  • Italian Renaissance Art

  • Psychology of I.D.E.A.L.S.

  • The Political Economy of Post-Secondary Education