The Children’s School

Progressive School × Strategic Design = Are You Curious?

Curiosity is the driving force behind human behavior. It’s what helps children learn and teachers teach. Located in the heart of Midtown Atlanta, The Children’s School (TCS) is an independent school serving a diverse community of approximately 400 students from preprimary through sixth grade. As TCS’s admissions materials had not been updated to reflect the recently completed website we had helped them create, they turned to us to help express the school’s mission and key differentiators in a collateral system.

Understanding what makes TCS different.

With a challenge to develop communication materials targeted to prospective families who inquired about TCS or who attended tours or open house events, we immediately set out to discover ‘what defines TCS?’ — not ‘what’ they do, but ‘how’ and ‘why’ they do it. How can a school help build character? How do children learn? Why is ‘curiosity’ important? Why does ‘outdoor education’ set them apart? Why is location significant? These types of questions helped us identify unique TCS characteristics, define its voice, and create the solution to better communicate its mission to prospective families.

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Articulation and Execution.

The primary ‘Are You Curious’ brochure uses a hands-on, minds-on, all-heart approach to best tell the TCS story. Through role model characters who portray ambitions such as Commander of Confidence, Steward of Solutions, Incubator of Ideas, Agent of Adventure and Captain of Charisma, we helped to differentiate and distance TCS from its competitors and support its commitment to educating the whole child.

An extended family of printed materials was developed to further communicate the TCS approach: grade-specific inserts and an illustrated ‘day-in-the-life’ map narrated by children highlight ‘Life at TCS’ from a child’s perspective on a typical day, and 3D activity cards that feature ‘Create Your Day’ games promote TCS’s commitment to ‘play, creativity and hands-on learning’.

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Results.

Overall the admissions materials and website exceeded expectations in meeting the key objective to define and communicate ‘how’ and ‘why’ TCS is different. The integrated collateral system captures an authentic, compelling story of a progressive school grounded in its principles to build character, promote curiosity and create a passion for learning in a diverse community.

Overwhelmingly positive response from TCS, its current, former and prospective families, and even its competition has validated our approach and the outcome. Some people have commented that the materials FEEL just like the campus itself, and TCS has heard from many prospective parents and students that the website and admissions materials compelled them to visit the school.

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Client

The Children’s School

This visualization illustrates the full extent of our engagement with this particular client, broken down by the percentage of specific capabilities we provided during the relationship.

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Capabilities

  • General
  • Individual
  1. I Understanding / strategy
    1. A Research
    2. B Data visualization
    3. C Brand strategy
  2. II Conceptualization / articulation
    1. D Naming / nomenclature
    2. E Positioning / message development
    3. F Copywriting / content development
  3. III Communication design / execution
    1. G Corporate identity
    2. H Video / motion graphics
    3. I Web design / development
    4. J Physical spaces
    5. K Collateral / publications
    6. L Events / experiences
    7. M Digital media / marketing
    8. N Social media
    9. O Packaging
  4. IV Measurement / consulting
    1. P Search engine marketing
    2. Q Creative consultation
    3. R Innovation workshops