Add your name and artwork to our school banner at one of our Discover Northern Lights events!

Add your name and artwork to our school banner at one of our Discover Northern Lights events!

Welcome! ¡Bienvenidos! Soo Dhowaada! Nyob Zoo!

Share the joy of an intellectually rigorous learning community by discovering Northern Lights, a free, K - 6 (K - 8 by 2021) public charter school. We are reimagining education through responsive inquiry in thought-provoking indoor and outdoor environments.


Our newsletters are being published!
Check them out here:
June Newsletter
July Part 1: We are in the Building

When we adults think of children, there is a simple truth we all ignore: Childhood is not preparation for life; childhood is life. A child isn’t getting ready to live; a child is living.
— John A. Taylor

July 13

10:00am-12:00 p.m.

Imagining Our Outdoor Learning and Play Space

426 Osceola Ave S

What's and Outdoor classroom? Come Imagine with us! Bring your imagination and we will provide the materials and guidance to help explore the possibilities of transforming a few small patches of grass at the school into a space for playful learning.

July 14

2:00- 7:00 p.m.

Twin Cities World Refugee Day

Loring Park
1382 Willow St
Minneapolis, MN 55403

This celebration of culture and life brings Minnesotans together to recognize and uplift the
diverse gifts that refugees bring to our state. Event-goers enjoy free live entertainment, food
and vendors from around the world, children’s activities, a community resource fair and
interactive educational displays. Stop by our booth and say hello!

Observe and listen to children, because when they ask ‘Why?’ they are not simply asking for the answer from you. They are requesting the courage to find a collection of possible answers.
— Carlina Rinaldi

Northern Lights Gazing

Articles about our school


Sports and Reggio-Emilia: Rigorous Elegance and Grit

Even if you’re not a sports fan, you are likely familiar with the idea that athletes and their coaches deconstruct competitive footage in order to guide future performances. Never in my wildest dreams would I have expected to draw parallels between an Italian teaching philosophy and American football, but I can’t help but notice how they both are gritty and elegant in process. Read more…

Play in learning

Opal School in Portland inspires St. Paul School of Northern Lights. Opal School uses the phrase “playful inquiry” to describe their approach to learning…Rather than play being what children do in their “off” time (recess), they incorporate play as school work, recognizing that play and learning are not separate times of the day. Read more…

Curriculum and Staying in bounds

We get many questions about what curriculum will look like at Northern Lights. As these questions continue to emerge, I have been pondering what families are truly wondering. Or what they’re nervous about. So, here we go with another sports metaphor, because they seem to help even non-sports fans! Read more…