The child is the seed from which the adult grows. The seed is full of potential, but a seed will only grow to full realization given the right conditions.
A child needs many things in order to grow, but of all these the most important needs are: recognition and acceptance. Without recognition, talents go thirsty and die. Without acceptance, feelings go underground and become problems.
A child needs a space that is safe, flexible, supportive, and forgiving. A space where you can make mistakes and learn from them. A space where you can share your feelings and dreams, and listen to the dreams and struggles of others. A school can, and should, be a laboratory where you are allowed to work on your dreams supported but uninterrupted, sharing when you can, retreating into silence when you need time to think.
Our school has three components:
The school’s philosophy is that children learn best when their emotions are incorporated into the learning environment. Self-awareness is the only way we learn self-control. Self-control imposed from outside is not really self-control. Emotional regulation and the development of strong social and communication techniques are important life skills.
Playfulness is a drive, a human need, that should be nurtured throughout childhood and into adulthood. A playful attitude to life unlocks creativity, alleviates stress, and enables divergent thinking, as well as collaboration and problem solving skills.
When we play, we move outside the limits of time and space, and discover sources of energy that appear unlimited. Those sources are the fountains of creativity so important to a fully lived life.
Academic achievement as well as success in the creative realms is dependent on self-confidence, and the ability to follow a passion with purposeful action. This kind of confidence is built in a secure, safe environment, which provides children with support, and challenges their independence and risk-taking. Teachers encourage children to work hard, to find their own solutions, to be independent and assertive in their need to achieve work goals.