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Children learn best if it is engaging, and fun. This approach to learning helps children develop creativity, imagination, curiosity, and collaboration. These, in turn, are the essential qualities of a successful innovator. They represent a set of skills and habits of mind that we strive to nurture, teach and mentor.
As Edutopia puts it, “Solving highly complex problems requires that students have both fundamental skills (reading, writing, and math) and 21st century skills (teamwork, problem solving, research gathering, time management, information synthesizing, utilizing high tech tools).” Those skills aren’t learned by listening to teachers' lecture and memorizing facts for tests. They are learned when students are actively engaged in researching, collaborating, solving real life problems and using technological tools.
We strive to make learning more authentic and connected to real life and the world around us. We use hands-on experiential learning throughout our curriculum with a focus on action, experimentation and collaboration. This enables our students to “take on” the identities and behaviors of explorers, artists, historians, writers, and scientists.
We value provocative questions and ideas more than right answers. In the world where knowledge increasingly becomes a commodity, our students learn how to learn. We teach them skills by giving them experience in solving progressively more complex problems. This develops their self-confidence and motivation. Students are not motivated merely by the desire to get a good grade – they are motivated because they are a part of a team, they have to solve an interesting problem that requires integration of learning from many sources and disciplines, and because they are having fun.
We are looking for ways to open more doors for our students. When you open those doors
and expand their horizons, they will never close, and that’s going to change these
students’ lives and their families’ and communities’ lives forever.