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2013-2014 Parent Handbook Document Transcript

  • 1. hj 2013 – 2014 Parent Handbook & Comprehensive Guide International Institute for Education Through the Arts An Intentional Model For Educational Reform Celebrating 29 Years
  • 2. 2400 Notre Dame Blvd. Chico, California (530) 345-5665 Director: Lori Tennant Private School Enrollment Limited to 24 Students Year Round Programs Academic Tutorial Home School Art Elementary – Middle School College Preparatory High School Supporting the Individual’s Learning Process and Expression The Progressive Schoolhouse Serving Chico, Paradise and Surrounding Communities Since 1985 www.progressiveschoolhouse.com
  • 3. © PROGRESSIVE SCHOOLHOUSE 2013 2013 - 2014 PARENT HANDBOOK The Progressive Schoolhouse… Where learning is a joy! Since 1985, our school facility has provided the community with educational programs designed to nurture, validate, and support the student’s individuality. Our educational approach is comprehensive and individualized to meet the developmental needs of its students. Since 1995, our school has been recognized as the model school for The International Institute of Education Through the Arts. Workshops, individualized consultation, internships, sponsored events and educational programs are offered year-round to support the mission of the non-profit organization. "To individualize is to honor and respect each individual's unique inherent learning potential." –Lori Tennant
  • 4. © PROGRESSIVE SCHOOLHOUSE 2013 2013 - 2014 PARENT HANDBOOK IIETA - International Institute for Education Through the Arts is a California Non-profit Public Benefit Corporation. “All human beings are unique and have the inherent potential to live successful and happy lives. All ages deserve the opportunity to engage in meaningful educational programs that support and validate their personal development, expression and autonomy. Our mission is to advocate, educate and support learning through the arts.” Thank you for your support. IIETA would not be the same without you! We envision a community that celebrates art in all its forms. We envision a community that is characterized by passion, knowledge and participation in the arts. We envision a community where the arts are valued as a cornerstone of civic pride and identity. We envision a community where art is recognized as a defining characteristic of our humanity. Mission Statement International Institute for Education Through the Arts 2400 Notre Dame Boulevard Chico, California 95928 Friends of the Progressive Schoolhouse 2400 Notre Dame Boulevard Chico, California 95928
  • 5. Educational Philosophy © PROGRESSIVE SCHOOLHOUSE 2013 2013 - 2014 PARENT HANDBOOK Our school believes that all children are individuals, every child unique. We can observe, record, and analyze development in children. Our school programs are comprehensive and individualized. Our intent is to validate and promote the integrity and uniqueness of each child’s learning potential. The developmental philosophy can explain how children think and learn differently at various ages and stages of development. Developmental theories recognize and support the individual differences in children’s learning processes. Children’s personality traits and behaviors often coincide with educational frameworks that support learning style differences. Developmental learning processes are unique to the individual child. Children process information, observations, and perceptions as well as construct their own associations and conceptual frameworks. Children integrate neurological stimuli through their senses and emotions. Educational programs for children have an ethical and moral obligation to operate within a framework that supports each child as an individual. The developmental approach supports and promotes learning potential. Progressive Schoolhouse is an educational facility that caters to the student’s unique learning style and potential. The school’s educational approach has been modeled from a developmental framework of scientific research and theory. The arts have been integrated into the school’s programs and provide opportunity for the students to express themselves and strengthen their learning experience. The arts play a critical role in the development of “the whole child.” The school's approach is comprehensive, individualized, experiential, and success oriented. The Progressive Schoolhouse models an educational approach where students excel in learning. This model is based on the work of many. More detailed information follows in the following sections: • Director Preface • Characteristics of Grades • Parent Effectiveness Training • The Quality School • Quantum Living and Learning • Living, Loving and Learning These short sections define the foundations upon which the Progressive Schoolhouse was created.
  • 6. © PROGRESSIVE SCHOOLHOUSE 2013 2013 - 2014 PARENT HANDBOOK This parent handbook has taken many different forms over the years. Each document is annually critiqued to accomplish the goal of providing a substantiated and comprehensive resource that documents the philosophical, scientific and practical application of a developmental educational approach. Our school is a model school for the developmental approach in education. The Progressive Schoolhouse, founded on a developmental approach in education twenty-eight years ago, continues to view the student's family as being an integral part of the educational process. All students not only express themselves as unique individuals, but also bring forth in trait, behavior and autonomy that which can be generally defined as "family dynamic”, learned behavior and experience outside of the school environment". In understanding the complexity and importance of raising healthy children, we cannot underestimate the importance of supporting the value of healthy families. The developmental approach is a reputable educational approach and offers viable tools in achieving the highest ideals in education. Since human development can be assessed, observed and recorded, this field of study continues to receive acclaim and recognition for its' updated scientific research and documentation in support of children and their developmental process. The developmental approach in education believes that students should be validated, recognized, and supported for their individual needs in the learning process. This comprehensive approach caters, directs, and nurtures the emotional, cognitive, social and physical needs of developing children. Our school's approach speaks to the highest ideal in educating the "whole child" and believes that its approach demonstrates on a practical level, an effective way of mediating the diverse needs of its students, both academically and developmentally. Our school prides itself in offering year round educational programs for children between the ages of four and eighteen. Our model school operates with a maximum enrollment of twenty-four students; (enrolled on a first come basis.) The noticeable range of development and diversity of its students causes even the casual observer to ask questions. Professionalism, parent education, consultation, practicum, and training are essential components of any school program that caters to the growth and development of healthy children and families. Our school requires all participants; (students, staff, interns, student teachers, parents, and guardians) to be responsive, communicative and enjoy the roles they actualize with the students. It's critical that the continued success and reputation of our school reflects and favors the application of ethics, knowledge and research that serve the mission of our educational approach. Since this body of knowledge can be broken down into varied topics of discussion, and tailored to meet the needs of its audience, our intent in this parent handbook is to represent the most common shared concerns of our parents— namely discipline, communication skills, the school's professional affiliations, roles and expectations, further explanation of educational approach, program, leadership and vision for the continued development of the school. Director’s Preface
  • 7. © PROGRESSIVE SCHOOLHOUSE 2013 2013 - 2014 PARENT HANDBOOK This handbook has incorporated a selection of books written by professional educators and clinicians to help document the school's own mission and approach. The information and interpretations found in each section of related topic will in part summarize the author's work, and hopefully inspire all of you to read more of the original text. Although most of the practical application of this information can be observed and modeled in the school environment, the educational value and application of this information is appropriate and beneficial for all families. Hopefully, the handbook will help parents provide quality care and education for their children, so that they may in turn develop to their fullest potential. With loving concern, Lori Tennant Program Director
  • 8. © PROGRESSIVE SCHOOLHOUSE 2013 2013 - 2014 PARENT HANDBOOK Lori Tennant, a master teacher, is the founder and administrator of The Progressive Schoolhouse. Lori started the Progressive Schoolhouse in 1985, with a vision to create a model school where the developmental philosophy could be exemplified. She believes that all children deserve an education that is individualized and structured to meet their development and learning potential. Lori’s expertise is additionally available for private and group consultation, workshops and lectures. Administrator / Director
  • 9. Core Curriculum © PROGRESSIVE SCHOOLHOUSE 2013 - 1 - 2013 - 2014 PARENT HANDBOOK Curriculum Overview Curriculum, planning and evaluation are the essential components of the developmental educational framework. Choices for curriculum reflect the individual needs of the student. Our resource library reflects a wide range of curriculum so that we may compliment the abilities, interests, aptitude and learning styles of our students. The main goal of all our planning is successful acquisition and retention of skill. All academic programs are developmentally appropriate and oriented towards individual success and learning potential. Learning styles are reflective of the way children think and relate to learning experience. The developing right and left hemispheres of the brain carry on continual interaction during the student’s learning experience. Although the hemispheres are specific and specialized in function, both are essential for any skill learning process. The developmental educational framework of The Progressive Schoolhouse includes planning and activity in the following curriculum areas, disciplines and skill areas. Learning is developmental and sequential within all curriculum areas. The skill acquisition process begins with foundation learning and is progressively enhanced with concepts and related learning activity at consecutive grade levels. The ideal nature of the school’s developmental philosophy ensures each student the opportunity for proficiency, mastery and successful progression in their studies. Traditional Classroom Subjects include: Core Skills • Mathematics • Reading • Phonics • Writing • Spelling • Vocabulary • Research Sciences • World Geography • Computer Literacy • Life Science • Physical Science • Earth Science • Environmental Science • Health English • Drama • Poetry • Creative Writing • Composition • Literature • Grammar Humanities • Music • Arts • History • Foreign Language • World Cultures • Fine Arts • Government • Economics • Communication
  • 10. © PROGRESSIVE SCHOOLHOUSE 2013 - 2 - 2013 - 2014 PARENT HANDBOOK Additional Curriculum areas: • Critical Thinking • Communication Skills • Problem Solving • Presentation Skills • Planning • Time Management • Organizational Skills • Team Building • Leadership/Mentoring • Personality Development • Group Skills • Physical Education • Field Study • Internship "The outcome of self expression will always offer a greater reward, and the greatest reward is to be independent and unique." –Lori Tennant
  • 11. © PROGRESSIVE SCHOOLHOUSE 2013 - 3 - 2013 - 2014 PARENT HANDBOOK Class Schedule  8:00 AM Schoolhouse doors open to enrolled students  8:30 – 10:00 AM Academics: Classroom Study  10:00 AM Morning Break  10:30 – 12:00 PM Academics: Classroom Study  12:00 – 1:00 PM Lunch Break  1:00 – 3:00 PM Academics: Classroom Study  3:15 PM After School Care Clock Begins Mathematics All programs are planned and individualized for successful skill acquisition. Skills are presented sequentially. Learning activity and materials support each student’s individualized program. Vocabulary, patterns, strategy and mechanics provide a strong foundation for all programs. Project work integrates the student’s skills with an application process that provides reinforcement and practical meaning. Mathematics is a comprehensive program where students receive independent instruction. The student’s progress is continually assessed, evaluated and strengthened to enhance skill acquisition and retention. All students work to maximum proficiency. The student’s study of mathematics is structured with daily assignments, comprehensive review, and periodic assessment and evaluation. Reading Many of the pre-reading skills characteristic of the kindergarten student become essential building blocks as they formally begin a reading program based on symbolic and phonetic constructs. During the initial phases of the student’s skill acquisition in reading, the student is instructed to decipher the phonetic mechanics of the English language and encouraged through developmentally successful learning activity to develop a working foundation for both reading spelling and writing. The language arts program emphasizes phonics and vocabulary building, spelling, penmanship, and reading and writing programs. Curriculum Implementation
  • 12. © PROGRESSIVE SCHOOLHOUSE 2013 - 4 - 2013 - 2014 PARENT HANDBOOK Literature is chosen to enhance skill development. As students continue to strengthen their working foundation, they are introduced to a variety of award winning children’s literature recognized for both illustration and story content. In addition to reading independently with a teacher each day, younger students participate daily in a shared language building group time termed simply ‘library’. Reading comprehension and vocabulary building skills continue to strengthen as library time associates the expressive integrity of literature with an inspiring array of concepts prose and dialogue. Throughout the school year, all student groups are introduced to diverse selections of literature- based readings including fairy tales, legends, fables, myths, fiction and non- fiction works, poetry, songs and scripts. Students are also taught how to effectively utilize a dictionary, thesaurus, atlas, almanac, encyclopedia and internet-based resources in their varied learning activities. All reading programs are structured to promote optimal development of skill and inspire the student to read for interest and pleasure. In addition to in class reading, study and research, all students are requested to read a minimum of thirty minutes to one hour at home each evening. Writing As soon as the young student acquires a working foundation in symbolic and phonetic recognition, learning activity is introduced which encourages the formal development of the writing process. Although writing programs are individualized, they are all comprehensive and structured for optimal development. Students work individually with a teacher to edit their current writing activity and receive new instruction. Progress is continually monitored and also provides an accurate assessment tool for individualized tutorial. Writing programs are continually assessed, planned and implemented to ensure the student’s acquisition of structure, mechanics, comprehension and awareness of style and format. Spelling, penmanship, grammar, punctuation, vocabulary and successful mastery of skills related to written assignments compliment the student's creative writing process and learning activity which integrates reading, research, oral and illustrative presentation skill. Instruction introduces and strengthens the elements of writing as well as the student’s original thoughts, ideas and expression. Science Even the oldest student enjoys discovering for themselves fact and explanation for the natural world they live in. Since students are active participants in the learning process associated with the study of sciences, the programs are comprehensively planned to enhance the student’s acquisition of science concept with hands-on project work, research, experimentation, discovery, invention, mentorship and field study. All science concept, vocabulary and related learning activity is introduced sequentially. A strong working foundation of science knowledge includes factual information, the ability to comprehend and relate science concept to concrete experience, and the ability to acknowledge, abstract and perceive the association of mathematics, scientific method and historical data with the scientific learning process. Formal instruction in the study of sciences is implemented during a class period
  • 13. © PROGRESSIVE SCHOOLHOUSE 2013 - 5 - 2013 - 2014 PARENT HANDBOOK known to the students as “group time.” The topics and concepts addressed during this period are based on a full school year’s planning. All students complete a minimum of one science project and present them at the school’s annual science fair each year. The intermediate and advanced student is required to spend twelve weeks on their project. Students spend most of this time actively researching a topic of interest. They utilize books, periodicals, interview process, computer technology and collect data from their experiments and projects. Upon completion, students present a research paper, a presentation board illustrating their project, and a three-dimensional model or demonstration piece that further illustrates the student's personal understanding of their project’s concepts. Students are presented with instruction on varied concepts in a comprehensive format that includes discussion, writing and reading assignment, trivia and other games of related significance, project work and experimentation, field study and assessment. History and Social Studies Primitive cultures and civilizations began a sequential series of studies depicting a time line approach to the student's ultimate comprehension of the word's diverse cultures and historical record. The youngest students enjoy learning about historical subject matter through award winning selections of literature. They also learn that their own family has a history that can be told in story form. Studies of continents, landforms, and geography provide them with the structure to later associate new information about various themes including animals, environments, and human cultures. Assigned research projects provide the students with opportunity to focus on their own interests and study. Historical studies are often integrated with reading, writing, research, foreign language acquisition, field study and many related art projects. As often as possible, our school enjoys environmental living programs in California’s State Parks. Our school has enjoyed these programs for many consecutive years. The programs provide the students and their families the opportunity to simulate the life style of the culture that endowed the area with its historical record. Students are encouraged to be in character and work to solve the many different problems that characterized the historical time period in California. Instruction and comprehensive learning activity involving current events, government, economics, foreign language, public speaking and debate enrich the intermediate and advanced student’s curriculum. Their knowledge of both world and American history allows them the ability to associate, comprehend and structure new constructs for advanced concepts of study.
  • 14. © PROGRESSIVE SCHOOLHOUSE 2013 - 6 - 2013 - 2014 PARENT HANDBOOK Community and World Studies Even though dramatic and creative play may be more readily observed in some of the earliest developmental stages, all children are continually influenced and inspired by role models throughout childhood. Experiential education and integrated studies recognizes the learning potential of each individual student and provides a variety of diverse and enriching opportunities for the student to observe, explore and perceive. Children find and imagine themselves in a variety of roles through childhood. Imagination is not a limiting factor. Through active participation and observation, children integrate and develop relationships with their surroundings. Importantly, travel experiences, mentorship, internship, integrated field studies and projects provide students with opportunities to assimilate, discover and learn about their world.
  • 15. © PROGRESSIVE SCHOOLHOUSE 2013 - 7 - 2013 - 2014 PARENT HANDBOOK All children are born with a natural affinity for nature. All children are independent and willful participants in play. Children are self-motivated, autonomous, and integrate into their experiences using all their senses. Young children are self-initiating and eager to discover the natural world. An individual’s self-interpretation of their perceptions, sensations, inspirations, and experiences is expression. Self-expression is joy; an innate gift we resource at will. The joy an individual resources is the motivation for self-expression and the creative process where an individual discovers the value of their potential. Self-motivation is the ultimate source of freedom. Within this dynamic lies the individual’s formula for joy. A child’s happiness is closely linked to the freedom they are given to discover themselves through their play. Self-expression and initiative begins when the developing child shows interest to motivate beyond the arms of their caregiver. At this time, the young child is initiating relationship with the world of their senses. Through observation, we can notice the innate qualifications even the youngest of children hold to create. Play essentially becomes a bridge between the senses and the child’s world. Nature is an ideal classroom. The natural world exemplifies a world of freedom and expression. Nature provides a palette of fluidity, transparency, and contrast. Nature is aesthetic, multi-dimensional, and transformative. Nature has no rules or limitations. Unlike the child’s play room at home, nature provides a perimeter of endless possibility. The self-expression of a child reflects their developmental stages and growth. As children begin to identify themselves with their world, their actions exemplify their need to express what they are learning. Children are vulnerable to perceptual stimuli and conditioning. Initially, children will trust the educational arena because they integrate into their experiences with open minds and with the guidance and support of their families. The ideal intention of education is to honor an individual’s unique learning process. The ideal role of the teacher is to mediate the student’s experience with acceptance and support. Through observation, a teacher or parent can learn how to individualize the developmental needs of their students. Educational institutions and structured learning programs are responsible for conditioning children away from their own unique learning approach and making the process one of dependence and conformity. The freedom of expression in children is often denied and disciplined. The educational arena is often responsible for denying children the right to develop into their potential. As children grow, they are quickly initiated into systems where conformity and compliance is expected. The Importance of a Developmental-Individualized Approach in Art Education
  • 16. © PROGRESSIVE SCHOOLHOUSE 2013 - 8 - 2013 - 2014 PARENT HANDBOOK At the Progressive Schoolhouse, we provide our students with an immediate reception of acceptance, acknowledgement, support, and validation. Our actions as teachers demonstrate the value of nurturing, trusting and respectful relationships with our students. The art studio at the school is set up to accommodate the developmental needs of our multi-age classroom. The classroom arena provides the young child with new experiences to assimilate, open-ended materials, sensory-based learning activity, and opportunities to discover, explore, and create. The studio experience promotes a structure that respects each individual in their creative process. When children feel joy, they want to share their excitement and will often say, “Watch me! Look at me! See what I did!” When given freedom to explore and create, young children will generate expression that describes how they are feeling in their creative process. Children enjoy discovering their joy and identify closely with self-mastery and personal success. Children experience joy and express the happiness they feel when they are given responsibility for the outcome of their experience. Nature is the perfect classroom…
  • 17. © PROGRESSIVE SCHOOLHOUSE 2013 - 9 - 2013 - 2014 PARENT HANDBOOK Please note: Ages and grades are not necessarily the best means of characterizing an individual’s aptitude or developmental progress. Developmental Kindergarten A program that supports the eagerness, joy, creativeness, and laughter of the young student. Foremost and without question, our kindergarten program caters to the developmental needs of the young school age child. Through imaginative play, exploration and planned learning activity, the young child becomes introduced and later competent with the routines of the classroom learning experience. Trusting, caring relationships with teachers help build bridges to new learning experience. Friendships, successful acquisition of developmentally appropriate skills, and happy hours spent in the school environment help to reinforce the student’s attitude and identification with the learning process. The kindergarten age child is fascinated about the world. Using all five senses, the kindergarten student actively develops a successful foundation for continued learning and discovery. First Grade The first grade child is a competent student. This age student is eager to learn! Success begins to be a natural motivator in acquiring new skills. First grade is highlighted by celebration and achievements. This year of learning is especially productive and rewarding to the young student. The first grader’s curriculum gives life to many different topics of information about the world. The student’s curiosity and imagination compliment a variety of learning activities and projects. Learning takes on a new focus as the student’s individualized programs continue to integrate their ability to acquire academic foundation skills. Play provides this age student with additional opportunity for problem solving and critical thinking skills. Experiential learning is emphasized. Field studies and art activity is implemented in weekly planning and compliments an integrated, thematic- based approach. The student’s developing language art skills and mathematic skills provide new and exciting opportunities for individual and small group project work. "The individual is at the center of all initiative, motivation, mastery, perception, and comprehension. These attributes are showcased as qualities of the individual, independent of outside stimuli." –Lori Tennant Sequential Characteristics of Development
  • 18. © PROGRESSIVE SCHOOLHOUSE 2013 - 10 - 2013 - 2014 PARENT HANDBOOK Second Grade The second grade student is comfortable with the learning process. The classroom experience continues to offer a wide variety of developmentally appropriate learning activities. This age student is articulate and inquisitive. Reasoning skills and imagination are blended with humor as the student continues to develop new understanding of their world. Second graders are noted for their self-expression! These students are impressionable and excited by new experiences. Learning continues to foster new ideas and competence. These young students are beginning to show initiative and enjoy independence in their work process. The classroom experience continues to provide a balance of teacher directed, child directed activities. Students are encouraged to pursue their own interest in their project work and utilize their skills in meaningful ways. Academic skill programs continue to be individualized. Planning allows for varied development and aptitude. Third Grade Knowledgeable and coordinated, the third-grader is a productive student. Capable and autonomous, this age child is often self-motivated and independent in completing learning activity. The third grade program strengthens skills, builds comprehension and new understanding. Project work becomes a necessary component of the educational process and an outlet for the students’ self-expression. The third grade child enjoys learning experience, which is intellectually stimulating as well as experimental and tangible. Inventions, experiments and games that offer strategy and risk, are much more attractive to this age child. Understanding continues to be refined as the young student actively explores their world. Interactive and cooperative, the third grade classroom encourages self-expression and strengthens oral presentation skills. Research skills offer the student the enhanced ability to further their studies outside the classroom. Project work begins to show attention for detail as the students continue to assimilate new information. "Individual character is the poetry of humanness." –Lori Tennant
  • 19. © PROGRESSIVE SCHOOLHOUSE 2013 - 11 - 2013 - 2014 PARENT HANDBOOK Fourth Grade The fourth grade student is inventive and eager to test their ideas and abilities. Skills become meaningful tools as their learning experience continues to challenge their intellectual and creative aptitude. The fourth grade student is ready for leadership experience and can be a successful group motivator. Practical experience with organization, planning and brainstorming provides the student with a heightened sense of industry, productivity, and goal setting. Mentoring opportunities enhance the student’s self confidence and aids in the student’s ability to apply their skills and knowledge. Experiential learning continues to enhance the fourth graders logical reasoning. Intellectually, this age student continues to rapidly assimilate new information. Fourth graders begin to successfully associate and create intelligible explanations about their world. The fourth grade classroom facilitates many new challenges, yet allows for differences in development as well. The fourth grade student is perceptive and observant. This age student is a natural investigator. Fifth Grade Active and responsible, the fifth grade student has an attention for details. Critical thinking skills provide this age student with the ability to construct and design. Learning activity and other games where strategy and problem solving skills are stressed, provide this age student with hours of enjoyment. Mysteries are fascinating and intriguing to this age child. Adventure stories captivate and entertain. This age student enjoys being dramatic. This age student enjoys costumes, character role playing and attracting the attention of an audience. Again, differences in students’ personalities reflect these above-mentioned descriptions to different extremes. The atmosphere in the classroom is one of acceptance and mutual respect. Students are responsive, yet sensitive to criticism. Field studies and project work continues to stimulate awareness and support various interests and studies outside the classroom. This student is interested in community, industry, and cultural events, and enjoys adventuring away from school and home. The fifth grader is inspired by role models of varying occupations and professions. Sixth Grade The sixth grade student is perceptive and competent. This age student is beginning to recognize his or her own learning potential. Self-awareness seems to mirror their fascination with relationships and their identification with people they admire. The sixth grade student is competent and works independently. The sixth grade program stresses comprehensive learning. Abstract reasoning and problem solving skills continue to develop and mature. The students understanding for concepts and systems parallel their interest in planning and organizing their own activities.
  • 20. © PROGRESSIVE SCHOOLHOUSE 2013 - 12 - 2013 - 2014 PARENT HANDBOOK Sixth grade students recognize the importance of communication skills, because they need to be understood. As they analyze and identify differences, similarities and relationships in their world, they begin to identify how their family values and belief systems compare with society. The sixth grader begins to ponder and align themselves with interest areas and people they enjoy. This age student is interested in relating and being socially accepted. Seventh and Eighth Grades The seventh and eighth grader is capable and skilled. This age child is now able to practice time management skills with success. Transitions between studies are handled now with maturity. The seventh and eighth grade student is observably self-disciplined. They are able to work both independently and cooperatively. Comprehensive learning continues to be emphasized for all seventh and eighth grade students, in all subject areas. Productive and industrious, the students are challenged by learning activity that requires them to use their skills in meaningful ways. The seventh and eighth graders are responsible group members. They are interested in associations, club memberships and community activities. The student’s apprenticeship program offers experiential learning and the opportunity for students to further their learning about the social community. These students are studious and interested in many different areas of study. The curriculum for this age student continues to enhance and refine skill learning. This age student is excited by meaningful activity and inspired by people they admire. These students are coordinated and aware of their talents. They are self-motivated students. The atmosphere of the classroom facilitates higher levels of thinking. This age student enjoys debate. Speeches and oral presentations allow them to strengthen their communication and presentation skills. Dramatic roles in plays, skits and monologues reinforce their enjoyment for character and dramatic impersonation. The eighth grade student is recommended to ninth grade studies when their overall skill assessment and individualized academic portfolio shows comprehensive acquisition and retention of skill at a level consistent with the individual’s K-8 grade development. Age is not a necessary determinant of promotion schedule. College Preparatory High School… An Educational Choice This program was created to validate nurture and support the student whose aptitude, development and interest dictates an alternative course of study. These student’s individualized academic studies are comprehensive and specific to meet the requirements of standards set forth by the California High School Proficiency Exam (CHSPE). Enrollment in this program is limited and requires comprehensive assessment and consultation. This educational choice will offer concurrent enrollment at Butte College, internships, entrepreneurial studies, volunteerism, independent study and research, travel, and support for employment opportunities.
  • 21. FAQs © PROGRESSIVE SCHOOLHOUSE 2013 - 13 - 2013 - 2014 PARENT HANDBOOK Q: What kind of school is the Progressive Schoolhouse? A: The Progressive Schoolhouse is a private school offering academic school programs for students of all ages. Q: What is the school’s educational approach, and what makes the school unique? A: A developmental approach serves as the foundation for our school’s philosophy. Catering to the individual needs of the students in their learning process is a priority. By validating the unique qualities of each student, being attentive to the student's differing developmental aptitudes, and importantly providing opportunity for students to express themselves and deepen their understanding during the learning process, the teaching staff at The Progressive Schoolhouse is an essential and integral part of the educational approach. Through engaging, respectful, and trusting relationships with their students, teachers encourage, challenge, and mediate learning experiences. Every day of learning is meaningful. Every student deserves an education that caters to their unique learning potential. Q: What difference does an education in a school that professes a developmental approach make in its students? A: Children spend, on the average, forty hours per week in attendance at their school. The school environment not only is a primary learning environment, responsible for the health, happiness and well being of its members, but also holds responsibility to providing the best education possible for all of its students. At The Progressive Schoolhouse, students in all grades are encouraged to excel in their work, as well as to strengthen the areas of skill and learning that are most challenging. Students are able to work above grade level as well as strengthen other areas of skill in a non-competitive atmosphere. Although the developmental attributes of the students are diverse in every grade and are catered to, the students also enjoy many different kinds of group instruction and activity. Common projects and assignments allow the students to learn from shared sources of information and instruction, and also importantly, from each other. Students work independently during work times and are encouraged to participate in all group activity. Through consistent modeling and teaching practices, students learn to be responsible for their own learning, and be accountable to their responsibilities. Self- motivation and self-discipline are both qualities observed in students who have been nurtured in an educational system that aligns itself with a developmental approach. The difference is reflected in the children. Learning should be enjoyable. Learning is a life long process.
  • 22. © PROGRESSIVE SCHOOLHOUSE 2013 - 14 - 2013 - 2014 PARENT HANDBOOK Q: What some of the emotional and social benefits of enrolling my student in a small model school? A: Since teachers, parents and interns integrate into the students’ daily school experience, they also serve as role models, mentors, and facilitators of effective communication skills. Our school environment allows children to be individuals. We encourage respectful, caring, responsible social behavior. We teach students skills that enhance communication and problem solving. We allow children opportunity to process, practice and strengthen their social skills, and take the time to support and validate their efforts. Our school values diversity and exemplifies the belief that people are more important than “things.” Children learn from making mistakes and are responsible for their emotions, choices and behaviors. We support the students’ progress, respect their unique development and often enlist the parents to help us attain our goals. Our interest is for children to develop skills that enhance their lives outside of school. When children feel happy, respected and secure, they are more willing to learn. Growing, developing children have many needs! Our simple recipe for success is to cater to their individual need, nurture their sense of well-being, and validate them in their learning process. Q: Why would an educational approach based on a developmental philosophy also support an individual’s learning potential? A: Everyone is unique. Everyone is an individual. Everyone’s life unfolds uniquely, and everyone has a unique learning potential. Since development, growth, and learning potential describe qualities of childhood, an educational system and approach cannot underestimate its responsibility to provide effective support structure and program. To maximize the efforts of an educational system that caters to development and learning potential, students first must be viewed as individuals, unique in all ways. Likewise, curriculum programs and planning must reflect the development, aptitudes, and learning style of the individual. Furthermore, as the individual progresses and develops, individual planning must conform to reflect the student assessment, interests, and development of the student. When validated in the learning process, students will gain momentum, self-discipline, autonomy, and esteem. These natural rewards allow children to feel autonomous, independent, respected and successful in their learning process.
  • 23. © PROGRESSIVE SCHOOLHOUSE 2013 - 15 - 2013 - 2014 PARENT HANDBOOK Since teachers mediate the student’s successful experience and are respected in their role, students are willing and encouraged to accept new challenges and learning opportunity. Assessment, evaluations, observation, insight, knowledge and experience guide the teachers in their goals and planning for each student. Since learning activity and opportunity cannot possibly ensure successful skill acquisition, teachers need to work comprehensively with each student independent of each other. Each day is a significant opportunity in realizing a student’s learning potential. With the right amount of integrity and effort, learning can really be a joy! The potential for excellence is in the learning approach and process.
  • 24. Finance © PROGRESSIVE SCHOOLHOUSE 2013 - 16 - 2013 - 2014 PARENT HANDBOOK Annual Tuition The Annual Tuition at Progressive Schoolhouse is $4,750.00 per academic school year. ($5,000.00 with added 2-weeks Summer Arts! Program.) Monthly tuition is due on the 1st day of the month (unless otherwise specified in Personal Financial Contract and with administrator’s approval). Late tuition fees, incurred beginning the 6th day of the month, are $10.00 per day with a maximum charge of $100.00 per 30-day period. Administration reserves the right to additionally charge interest on late tuition payments. Personal Financial Contracts Personal Financial Contracts are available with administrative approval. A $500.00 deposit is required with contract execution. Annual Material Fee A material fee in the amount of $1,000.00 is payable on the first day of school. Students that enroll after September will be charged a pro-rated fee to be determined by the Director. Payment Schedule Date Due Description Amount September 2, 2013 Material Fee* + Tuition Installment $1,500.00 October 1, 2013 – May 1, 2014 Monthly Tuition Installment $500.00 June 1, 2014 Tuition, or June 1, 2014 Summer Arts! Jump Start Tuition Discount Last Tuition Installment Last Tuition Installment + Two weeks Summer Arts! Intensive Tuition $250.00 $500.00
  • 25. © PROGRESSIVE SCHOOLHOUSE 2013 - 17 - 2013 - 2014 PARENT HANDBOOK The Artist’s Playground - After School Arts Program Fee Our program welcomes students between ages 5-15 years old. Enrollment is limited to twelve students per day. Monday through Thursday sessions are from 3:30-5:30pm. Please schedule pick-up for your student accordingly. All class materials are provided. Students are encouraged to wear clothing appropriate to the creative nature of the program. Fees are $10.00 per hour. Please Note: There are no general after school hours Mon – Thursday. If your student is on campus later than 3:15, they will be enrolled in the first hourly Artist’s Playground session. No programs are available on Fridays. Late pick up on Fridays will result in a $20 fee. Please schedule your student’s pick-up to coincide with this policy. Tutorial Program Tutorial services are considered on an individualized basis. Comprehensive assessment, evaluation and consultation, provide the necessary cornerstones of your student’s program. The tutorial student’s program is planned to promote and support the goals formulated in the consultation and evaluation process. Subject emphasis can vary, yet learning activity and instruction will be specific and supportive. Homework support can also be a viable reason for tutorial services. The student’s work portfolio will show evidence of process, conference and written assessment will compliment and characterize the success of each student’s program. Field Trips and Special Activities Field trips and special activities have separate and additional fees. All fees must be paid in full prior to the event to ensure student participation. Returned Check Administration requests an additional $30.00 per occurrence. Notice Period for Early Withdrawal A two-week paid notice is required before withdrawal from school program. In lieu of notice, the financially responsible party may pay two weeks tuition.
  • 26. © PROGRESSIVE SCHOOLHOUSE 2013 - 18 - 2013 - 2014 PARENT HANDBOOK Financial Consideration If you need to make financial arrangements other than those outlined in our Parent Handbook, private financial consultation is available by appointment only through our school’s Financial Educator. Please understand that as with any of our non-traditional staff services, extensive financial consultation, workshops, and lectures may require a fee for service. Withdrawal for Non-Payment Administration reserves the right to withdraw student(s) from the Progressive Schoolhouse when persistent non-payment issues exist.
  • 27. Schedule © PROGRESSIVE SCHOOLHOUSE 2013 - 19 - 2013 - 2014 PARENT HANDBOOK School Start and End Dates School will run from September 3, 2013 to June 13, 2014. Attendance records will include roughly 185 school days. Traditional Academic School Programs will run between 8:00am - 3:00pm, Monday through Friday. Adjustments to this schedule must be approved and documented by administration. School Vacation and Holiday Schedule The school will enjoy five weeks of vacation during school year 2013 –2014. Since our school may offer regular school hours on most traditional and national holidays, school attendance during these days is at the discretion of family. The administration will consider these days optional; absences will not be recorded, yet attendance will be taken. All optional school days will be discussed at monthly parent meetings and posted in advance. Vacations Fall: November 11, 2013 (Veteran’s Day); November 25 – 29, 2013 Winter: December 23, 2013 – January 10, 2014 (school resumes Jan 13, 2014). Spring: April 14 - 18, 2014 2014 Promotion Ceremony All students enrolled at The Progressive Schoolhouse are promoted in a ceremony at the end of each school year. Our school’s annual promotion ceremony will take place on: June 13, 2014, at 6:00pm. Please mark your calendars. Our school’s graduation ceremony will take place on: June 12, 2014, at 6:00pm. All school families are invited to attend and celebrate the graduating eighth and twelfth grades. Summer Arts! Program Our school’s annual “Summer Arts! Program” registration information will be available to families one month prior to graduation. During the weeks of June 16 – 27, 2014, our year-round students are invited to participate in a “Jump Start Intensive” to this popular summer program at a discounted tuition rate. Summer Arts! Program begins the Monday following our promotion Ceremony on June 13, 2014. The Program runs through August 8, 2014. School Start Date 2014 Our regular Academic school year resumes on September 2, 2014.
  • 28. Policy © PROGRESSIVE SCHOOLHOUSE 2013 - 20 - 2013 - 2014 PARENT HANDBOOK The following general guidelines determine the eligibility of prospective students into the Progressive Schoolhouse: 1. The parent(s) or guardian(s) of the child must be financially responsible to pay the monthly tuition. 2. The parent(s) or guardian(s) of the child must supply developmental history and health history for their child for review by school administration. 3. The parent(s) or guardian(s) of the child must supply the school records for their child. 4. The child must not have a history that would indicate or suggest the child may be a danger to himself / herself or to others. 5. The child must be able to understand verbal or written communication adequately so that school staff will be able to properly communicate and teach the child. 6. The director reserves the right to deny enrollment of an applicant if she determines that the school cannot provide the applicant with an ideal individualized program that will complement their learning and developmental differences. Enrollment Process 1. The parents of the prospective student schedule and meet with the school director. The prospective student is welcome to join this meeting. 2. The parents observe classroom activity and the prospective student may attend the school for a day. 3. The prospective student is accepted as a student, contingent on receipt, review, and approval of the following forms, information and fees by the school's director: a. Parent / Guardian completes and signs the Educational Agreement b. Parent / Guardian completes and signs the Emergency Information form. c. Parent / Guardian completes and signs the Transcript Request form. d. Parent / Guardian completes and signs the Medical Consent form. Admission Eligibility Policy
  • 29. © PROGRESSIVE SCHOOLHOUSE 2013 - 21 - 2013 - 2014 PARENT HANDBOOK e. Parent(s) or guardian(s) provide documentation of Immunization and sight/hearing tests. f. First month tuition and material fee is submitted with the forms. 4. Upon receipt and approval of the items listed above, the child is enrolled into the school. Positive Discipline and Value Clarification Positive discipline can be defined as teaching children to acknowledge and respect the difference between appropriate and inappropriate behavior. Discipline thus becomes a process where the student gains self-control and respect for appropriate behavior. Through consistent modeling, teaching, and supervision, the values inherent in this approach become the basis for all social interaction. The social dynamic of the classroom and playground thus becomes identified with expectation for appropriate behavior. This active learning process allows the student to learn through practice. Students learn to identify inappropriate behavior, acknowledge social problems and are validated for their proactive participation in the problem solving process. Testing Boundaries If students choose to test boundaries, they will receive firm, consistent yet gentle reminders. Students are made aware of consequences associated with inappropriate behavior. Limits or consequences are as follows: 1. Gentle firm warnings; which re-teach values and clarify expectations for appropriate behavior. 2. 3-5 minute “sitting time” with clarification and communication following. 3. Rest. 4. Phone conference with parents. Request for immediate pick-up may follow. 5. Conference and problem solving with parents. All families will receive timely notice in case of an outbreak of a contagious disease or health concern. I request that all families please notify the school as early as possible if their family is experiencing a health concern. Behavioral Policy Health Policy - Contagious Illness
  • 30. © PROGRESSIVE SCHOOLHOUSE 2013 - 22 - 2013 - 2014 PARENT HANDBOOK Students will need to return home, if they: 1. Suffer from fever 2. Suffer from exhaustion 3. Suffer from nausea or vomiting 4. Suffer from general discomfort resulting in an inability to participate in school activities. Emergency Policy All families are required to complete an emergency and medical release form during the registration process. Families are required to update the information contained in these forms when appropriate. In case of an emergency, the school’s administration will contact the student’s parents or legal guardians by phone. If the emergency contacts are unavailable, the administrator shall arrange for licensed physicians to administer emergency treatment to the student. Emergency transportation shall be arranged by the school administrator and paid for by the student’s parent or guardian. Health Records and Policies The Progressive Schoolhouse requests that all families, prior to enrollment, complete the health and development form issued by the school. Families are requested to update this form as information changes. Health Screening / Testing Students must be tested for hearing and sight prior to the first grade and again before the sixth grade. Test results are to be documented in the students file. Lunches and Snacks Families are requested to supply adequate nutritious meals and snacks for their children. Water is available at all times for drinking. Please label all mealtime containers with student’s name. Refrigeration and microwave is available for all meal preparation. Minor Health Related Emergencies School administration and staff will apply first aid and administer prescribed medicines upon arrangement with families. All staff members are trained and certified in C.P.R. and first aid.
  • 31. © PROGRESSIVE SCHOOLHOUSE 2013 - 23 - 2013 - 2014 PARENT HANDBOOK Celebrations Celebrations of birthdays, holidays, and other significant occasions are welcomed events. If sponsoring a celebration throughout the year, please inform the administration ahead of time so families can receive proper notification in advance. Closed Campus Students will be required to have written permission to leave the school campus for any reason during regular school hours. Administration reserves the right to request additional verification of parent if necessary. Field Study Students and their families are invited to attend all scheduled field trips. Prior to each event, parent meetings are held and are mandatory for those families wanting to attend the field trips. For each trip, as reservations are made, students and their parents have first priority to reservation arrangement, with siblings next in priority. Friends and relatives are often considered as alternates in reservation. Students may be able to attend field trips without parents if arrangements are acceptable to administration. Transportation is normally by private vehicle. Car-pooling is common. Field trip policies are strictly followed. Please be aware that this year’s calendar of events will depend on reservation and availability of transportation. All families are requested to stay personally informed and plan ahead for travel, trip and expenses related to the trips. Friends of the Progressive Schoolhouse The Friends of the Progressive Schoolhouse in association with the non-profit International Institute and Education Through the Arts, is a year-round associate comprised of parents and friends of the school. The mission of this group is to provide resources and support for the school, to assist the development of the school’s growth in the community and ensure that each family associated with the school is kept informed of the association’s progress in accomplishing their goals. Homework Homework requirements and schedules are individualized to fit the needs of the student and family. Please ensure your student’s growth in this area by scheduling an appointment with administration as soon as enrollment is completed. School Policy
  • 32. © PROGRESSIVE SCHOOLHOUSE 2013 - 24 - 2013 - 2014 PARENT HANDBOOK Hot Lunch and “Snack Café” “The Friends of the Progressive Schoolhouse” will be sponsoring the school’s “snack café” during the school year 2013-2014. The “snack café” will carry a variety of nutritionally balanced snack and quick lunch items. On Tuesdays and Wednesdays, students with written parent permission will be able to purchase hot lunch from “Burger Hut”, a favorite neighboring restaurant. Parent and Teacher Conferences TWICE yearly, parents are REQUIRED to schedule conferences with teaching staff. Families should allow an hour or more in scheduling. Conferences are usually scheduled during the month of November and May. Appointment to discuss your child’s progress can be made in advance, any month of our school year. Parent Meetings and School Events Administration requests that all families schedule ahead to attend parent meetings the second Tuesday of each month. Meetings will often be held monthly to benefit the communication between families and the school’s teaching staff. Please contact administration if you are unable to make a parent meeting! Technology The environment here at The Progressive Schoolhouse is designed to create a multitude of connected experiential learning opportunities—both social/emotional, and academic. Scientific documentation and research supports the benefits of minimizing the use of technology during childhood. The use of personal technology is not allowed on campus during school hours 8:00am to 3:00pm. School Calendar Events and notices will be displayed in advance on our parent board located inside the school building. Written information will be sent home with students and/or made available for parents to pick up. Parent meetings will be held to discuss planned events and activities. Parents are required to stay informed. Please note that most scheduled events depend on reservations and availability of group transportation. Academic Attendance Parents / Guardians are strongly encourage to telephone the Schoolhouse early when your student is expected to be absent from the school day. Please communicate absences and or request for early dismissal by 9:00am. Student’s attendance record will reflect all absences.
  • 33. © PROGRESSIVE SCHOOLHOUSE 2013 - 25 - 2013 - 2014 PARENT HANDBOOK Evaluation Without Grades The common use of symbols for grading and evaluation is replaced in our school by reinforcement and dialogue. Dialogue thus protects and stimulates respect, integrity, esteem, and work ethics. Critique can challenge, confirm achievement and progress, create solution, allow for individual expression, growth and development. Assessment and program development is comprehensive and consistently monitored to ensure successful acquisition of skill. Portfolio Evaluation Student portfolios will be maintained for each student and will include work in all subjects. Portfolios will be updated daily. Portfolio contents belong to the students and their families; yet, may not be taken home before conference time since they are used in the evaluation process. Evaluation and assessment information will be shared with families during scheduled conference times twice a year, or upon request. Written copies of the student’s evaluation are available upon request. Student Evaluation Policy
  • 34. Foundations © PROGRESSIVE SCHOOLHOUSE 2013 - 26 - 2013 - 2014 PARENT HANDBOOK by, Dr. Thomas Gordon Effective communication skills can improve the quality of relationships. As role models for children, we have the responsibility of demonstrating effective communication skills in our relationships. Most adults and parents rely on the same methods of solving problems and raising children that were used by their family. Effective communication skills express feelings, initiate reciprocation and help bring about the factors in relationships that nurture growth, change and autonomy. Authentic interpersonal relationships are based on honesty and taking responsibility for feelings and needs without laying blame. P.E.T. is based on a theory of human relationships that is applicable to any and all relationships between people, not just parent-child relationships. This system outlines a practical approach in learning communication skills: two-way communication, creative problem-solving, constructive conflict-resolution, goal setting, teamwork and cooperation. Parents can learn to raise children who are responsible, self-disciplined, and cooperative without relying on fear tactics. Parents can learn how to influence children to behave out of genuine consideration for the needs of the parent. According to the book, there are three main types of parents; the winners, the losers and the oscillators. "Winners" apparently use threats of punishment to influence the child to obey. When conflict arises, the parents consistently win; "parents know what's best!” The "losers" allow their children a great deal of freedom. When conflict arises, the child wins; "Children's needs come first." The oscillators oscillate between the two approaches. These are the parents who are most confused and uncertain of their parenting skills since they cannot be consistent with any one approach. P.E.T. teaches effective communication skills that offer a no-lose method termed mutual problem solving. The master key in P.E.T. is the method of bringing discipline into the home through the use of skills that support effective management of conflict. An effective parent allows himself to be a real person. Children thus respond positively when their parents act as ordinary people, having faults, making mistakes, not seeming to be "all powerful," domineering and perfect in behavior. The author reassures the parent that they don't have to be one hundred percent consistent with their communication skills to be an effective parent, and that they don't have to pretend to feel accepting or loving toward a child when they genuinely do not feel that way. This method challenges the adult to recognize their feelings, and the causes for their feelings, so that they may in turn be effective communicators. Some parents and adults are tolerant of children's behavior and some are not. Being accepting is a characteristic of personality. A parent's feeling of acceptance will also change with state of mind, situation and feelings about themselves. Parents can even show acceptance for a child's actions by not intervening in his activities and allowing children to learn through their own creative error. Many parents fail to realize how often they communicate non-acceptance to their children simply Parent Effectiveness Training – P.E.T.
  • 35. © PROGRESSIVE SCHOOLHOUSE 2013 - 27 - 2013 - 2014 PARENT HANDBOOK By interfering, intruding, and joining in. A hands-off attitude comes hard to some. A communication skill termed passive listening, allows children the opportunity to listen to their feelings and find constructive solution in the process. When an adult communicates acceptance to a child verbally, effective communication responses include door openers such as; "Tell me about it, "Would you like to talk about it?" Children usually react favorably, since they want their feelings to be understood, or their needs to be met within the context of the conversation. Active listening is another skill that is used when the parent understands that the child has some need to communicate. The child usually wants something, feels discomfort, is hungry or something like this. Active listening dialogue begins with the parent when statements such as "Sounds like you are really upset about that," are used in response. Active listening is essentially a skill that is used in response to a child's message. The parent decodes it and sends back a message that communicates what you think the child is saying. This response allows the child to hear empathy and support for their feelings. Active listening also encourages children to reciprocate and listen to the parent’s thoughts and feelings. When parents don't empathize, children feel that their feelings are not being understood. Some parents are so frightened of feelings that they actually fail to detect them in their child's messages. I messages are communication skills that effectively communicate to the child the effect his behavior is having on you. These messages are far less threatening than the projection of blame and shame reflected in the classic "you message." I messages communicate respect and honesty for feelings. Since the early 1970's, over a million copies of P.E.T. have sold worldwide. Parent Effectiveness Training also continues to be a popular eight-week educational course taught by qualified instructors in most all cities. P.E.T. on the local level has been one of the C.S.U.C.'s extension classes offered every other semester during the spring term. The ramification for the practice of effective communication skills in our lives is astounding. Understanding the importance of effective communication skills enables us an opportunity to change the way we parent and communicate. The practical application of the methods outlined in the book P.E.T. provides us with an approach that when practiced can significantly strengthen our relationships and help us to become better role models for children.
  • 36. © PROGRESSIVE SCHOOLHOUSE 2013 - 28 - 2013 - 2014 PARENT HANDBOOK by, William Glasser, MD. Teaching and communicating in ways that satisfy needs. An effective approach in disciplining children. Elementary and primary schools have the responsibility of ensuring that young students thrive and are successful in their learning process. Like any organization, there is added responsibility for the management to establish an atmosphere conducive to the development and application of program expectation and ideal. Management practices should constantly strive to elevate the overall quality of the programs by involving the students or "workers" in the process. Once students recognize the value and quality of the system, and identify how it has reflected itself in their school performance and work, they have incentive and reason to participate. The real job of the manager or director of an organization is to see that the students or workers fulfill the high expectations and goals of the program. Since the author of "The Quality School" believes that "the traditional system of management in schools sends a clear message to students that low-quality work is acceptable," the book essentially outlines an approach in education that teaches how to satisfy the needs of the students and ensure that progress is always being made toward a standard of quality. According to the author, there are five basic needs that motivate all people; survival, love and friendship, power, fun and freedom. "Our behavior is always our best attempt at the time to satisfy one or more of our needs." "We spend our lives trying to learn how to satisfy our needs, but most of us do not have a clear idea of what they are, especially when we are young. What we always know however, is how we feel. What we actually struggle for all of our lives is to feel good." As stated in the book, all motivation associated with work and behavior essentially comes from within the individual. Coercion and persuasion, also forms of motivation, may provide enough stimuli to illicit a response, yet in effect, is short term in scope and does not produce "high quality" performance. There is no basic need in children to do schoolwork! Before starting school, most children are told by their families that school is good for them and fun. Children learn to expect school to feel good. Since kindergarten is usually need satisfying, it is not until later, as children develop beyond kindergarten, that they are taught to expect delay in gratification. Even with support and encouragement from their parents, children began to feel frustration with most teaching systems and often use the term "boring" to explain their feelings. Even though the students make the ultimate judgment about how important schoolwork is to them, teachers have a responsibility to make the learning process need satisfying for them. Kindness, courtesy and humor can even make the learning process seem immediately gratifying and entertaining! The teacher may even be able to make the students feel good about school. Learning activity and assignments have more value when instructional time is made to seem worthwhile and a pleasure. "Teachers need to learn that only by choosing to The Quality School
  • 37. © PROGRESSIVE SCHOOLHOUSE 2013 - 29 - 2013 - 2014 PARENT HANDBOOK teach in a need satisfying way can they satisfy both their own needs and the needs of their students." Importantly, children seem to trust and respect people who make them "feel good," because they have learned that they are an integral part of why they are emotionally secure. Until students have a clear idea about what a quality education is and how it can work in their favor, students will not work to their potential. According to the author, "Our educational system fails to recognize that quiet, conforming students who pass achievement tests that measure minimal standards are not doing high quality work. Few are able to define quality education, but most are able to recognize that a machine cannot measure quality." Since students need to consistently own their learning or maintain power in their learning process, they need to take responsibility for their performance, behaviors and thoughts. Early in the formal learning process, students need to gain a small success margin that eventually can be helped along by the teacher to become a margin of quality. With confidence, students become more willing to delay their immediate need for gratification in exchange for "quality work." During this process, children learn that self-control is a motivational factor and can be used to satisfy their frustrations. Changing and controlling behavior thus become additional means for the student of achieving success, ownership and emotional satisfaction. Students will often say that they hate school. This is a normal response for a student who is asked to work hard at something that doesn't fulfill their needs. When students volunteer for extracurricular activities, students work hard and enjoy themselves, because they want the fun, freedom, power and sociability of the activity. Freedom of choice always adds to the margin of quality in experience. Since some students gain motivation by excelling in math and some in disrupting the class, the author expands further on this need hierarchy by explaining that the classroom environment for some students is really an opportunity for them to gain the attention and recognition they haven't been given at home. "Since most of these students require more attention than a teacher can provide, the differences in family support systems may give the best explanation. There is no quick fix! The only good solutions to discipline problems are systematic and long-term." All a parent can really control in the discipline process is the way they ask their children what they would like. Most parents use methods of persuasion and coercion. Parents threaten, sweet talk, bribe, punish, reward and promise the moon, all in hopes of changing their children's behavior. These techniques are not always effective! According to the author, parents need to be confident with the statement, "All problems can be solved!" The author encourages parents and teachers to use problem solving skills in all situations and remind us to not "be misled into thinking that the problem solving approach is soft or non punitive, because in this process, the child is taking responsibility." Disruptive students usually are children who have great difficulty satisfying their needs in school. The child who is disruptive in the classroom and at home has a need for power and attention. Since this student portrait poses the most concern for parents and teachers, the practical application and use of problem solving skills with these children is paramount. The following
  • 38. © PROGRESSIVE SCHOOLHOUSE 2013 - 30 - 2013 - 2014 PARENT HANDBOOK statements will provide some examples of effective skill an adult can use in dialogue with a "disruptive student." "Your problem is solvable!...What was done was against the rules...Let's solve the problem so it doesn't occur again...I believe you can work out your problems without getting your parents involved...I know your upset. As long as you’re doing what you are doing now, we can't work anything out...Since you won't calm down; I have to ask you to sit down over here...What are you doing to make it better? Work out a better way, then come back and let me know what you’re thinking." All of these statements ask the child to be responsible for the problem's solution. Children are empowered in the process of solving their problems with others and will inevitably gain the skills with enough practice. The Progressive Schoolhouse allows its students the freedom to excel, make choices, be innovative thinkers, solve problems and work to their developmental capacity. The school's management led approach perceives the teacher as the primary role model responsible for meeting the needs of students. "Students will do things for a teacher they care for that they would not consider doing for a teacher they did not care for." Teachers need to be seen as a "need satisfying" friend to effectively manage a quality school. By satisfying the needs of their students, teachers empower the students. This approach is always giving the students the opportunity to improve their performance and their work. "If we are not going to try to improve what we do, there is little sense in assessing it." At our school, the teacher is always available to lend support and appropriate encouragement. Quality is always being discussed and related to the students on a level that takes into effect their own needs and development. Any method of teaching that ignores the needs of the participants is bound to fail. Quality is always a product of warm, caring human relationships. Quality is the best that everyone in the organization, working both separately and together, can achieve at any particular time. A quality school never settles for less. No matter how good it is at any one time, a quality organization strives toward improvement!
  • 39. © PROGRESSIVE SCHOOLHOUSE 2013 - 31 - 2013 - 2014 PARENT HANDBOOK by Dr. Dorothy Wilson and Dr. Barbara Johnson "Quantum Living and Learning" honors the unique progression of growth and development in the individual. It is a system that helps to explain why the arts are essential components of the learning process. "Quantum Living and Learning," outlines a system of living and learning that encourages the development of each individual's potential. It is a practical approach based on application and observation. This system has far reaching implications in education, because it explains how individuals process and conceptualize information differently and why motivational factors are different for each individual. The system provides understanding for the importance of the arts and the expression of metaphoric language and honors and supports the uniqueness of the individual in the learning process. "There isn't a common approach to learning that is appropriate for every person." Since learning is a life long process, the most important question to address is, "How can we best fulfill the learning potential of each individual?” The authors believe that the "Most important factor for change is helping adults understand themselves and how important their role model is for children. There is a need to improve the quality of the adult model since they teach by the quality of life they live. Children are our greatest resource." The outline of the "Quantum" system provides us with a comprehensive framework of traits and portraits that summarize eight different "way of beings." Essentially this term is used to describe the uniqueness of each person. Although varied in characteristic, each portrait allows us the opportunity to perceive how important the developmental approach is in understanding the learning process. "When the uniqueness of the individual is honored, the person is empowered." The Progressive Schoolhouse is a model school for a non-profit titled "The International Institute for Education Through The Arts." Founded by the authors of this book, the organization's mission includes providing a teaching model that translates and demonstrates the practical application of the system. Since the arts are an essential component of the approach, the book also supports the learning process that provides the individual with opportunity for self- expression and creativity. In essence, the arts provide the individual with opportunity to express their unique metaphoric language and validate their learning potential. "Neglecting the arts is ignoring the development of the whole person." The authors feel that our society has neglected the meaningful implications of this scientific based research and believe that the application of the system would solve many of the problems in our multi-cultural, technological based society. The following charts were formatted from the original text to help the parents of our students identify the unique set of characteristics and traits which primarily exemplify the uniqueness of their children, yet also may help to clarify their own "portrait." Each section will include a developmental timeframe and denote portrait recognition to one or more of the following "ways of being," physical, relational, mental and emotional. Quantum Living and Learning
  • 40. © PROGRESSIVE SCHOOLHOUSE 2013 - 32 - 2013 - 2014 PARENT HANDBOOK Since this system is developmental and the result of many applied observations, the authors remind us that the information is general in context. Infancy: Dominant characteristics, First Level • Physical: These children are highly sensitive to sensory stimulation. Frustration will occur if they feel overloaded by their environment or by people around them. They are content to play alone and will thrive in a quiet environment with freedom to explore their surroundings. • Emotional: These children are emotionally sensitive. They are especially sensitive to the tone of voice of people speaking to them. They feel that the anger and tension of others is directed at them. They will also be sensitive to tastes, smells and textures. They do best when their likes and dislikes are honored. • Relational: Bonding relationships are essential for these children. They require active engagement through touching, eye contact and inclusion in family activities. Isolation is painful for them unless they are exhausted and need rest. An environment that provides fun, play, and warm, interactive relationships is ideal. • Mental: Although all children at this age are sensory oriented, these children are especially visual and interested in shapes, black and white designs and patterns in movement. They will benefit from sensitive, concrete, physical experiences in a calm and ordered environment. Do not force interpersonal relationships with these children so they can pursue those things that interest them. Childhood: (ages four through seven) Second level energizes • Physical/Emotional: These children need concrete experiences that allow them to observe and work cooperatively. Time in nature and emotional support from adults will help them make transitions. • Physical/Relational: These children need a harmonious environment to thrive. They are very sensitive people. They will work in groups if the energy is harmonious. They will need time alone when over stimulated by their environment or people. • Physical/Mental: These children need space, clarity and order in their environment. They need time and space to observe and work at their own pace. They are very sensitive to their personal space and need to not feel invaded. They have an intuitive sense of what is right that needs to be respected. • Emotional/Physical: These children need lots of attention and verbal approval in a secure environment. They will seek stuffed animals or people to cuddle with when they need comfort and should be supported in satisfying this need. They are natural nurturers and do well when they can share this gift with people and animals. • Emotional/Mental: It is important to these children that their ideas are respected and they are supported in bringing their ideas into action when possible. These children need opportunities to work and play with older adults and children. They are sensitive, natural leaders who will like to be involved in projects that serve others.
  • 41. © PROGRESSIVE SCHOOLHOUSE 2013 - 33 - 2013 - 2014 PARENT HANDBOOK • Emotional/Relational: These children are very sensitive and need opportunities to express themselves through all of the arts and then talk about what they've expressed. They are highly sensitive to feelings. Emotions can overwhelm them. They need a calm environment and supportive adults or pets to validate them. • Relational/Physical: These children need the companionship of peers. Give them plenty of opportunity to share, interact, dramatize, plan fun experiences and celebrations. They learn best by talking. They have a lively imagination and need help discerning what is real and what is fantasy. • Relational/Mental: These children need a "nest", a secure place to explore and take risks from. They need firm boundaries, but freedom to operate freely and independently within the structure. Respect their ideas and help them to find appropriate ways of expressing themselves. • Relational/Emotional: These children need to be with people who will listen to them and not embarrass them or break their confidences. It is extremely important to give them a firm foundation of personal safety, security and a healthy self-concept. • Mental/Physical: These children need mental challenges, time to discuss their ideas and opportunities to physically manifest some of their ideas. Exercise and mullet-sensory experiences are important to energize them. They will be more interested in outdoor activities in beautiful settings than they will in situations of rough and competitive play. • Mental/Emotional: These children need to have their ideas respected and supported. They are motivated by personal harmony. They need to be encouraged to share their ideas in a safe, respectful environment. • Mental/Relational: These children need to be listened to with acceptance. They are very interested in morals and ethics that affect the group. They can even act as a self- appointed judge and defender of justice. They especially need guidance in how to verbalize their insights to the group in acceptable ways. The development of the individual to full potential is a lifelong process. For an adult, acceptance of personal strengths and weaknesses is essential in identifying and understanding ones own "way of being." Environment, cultural difference, and conditioning can also influence the development of the individual. "By taking time to understand, accept, and appreciate yourself, you will be empowering yourself and others. You can change your life and relationships when you discern your potential by understanding how you perceive the world, what motivates you and how you communicate." When we are able to understand, accept and appreciate our own strengths and abilities, we are able to value the uniqueness of others. "By living your way of being, you begin developing your full potential." Through actualizing our potential as adults and becoming "authentic” role models, we are better suited to our roles as parents and educators. Importantly, we will be able to help children discover their uniqueness, their autonomy and joy for living.
  • 42. © PROGRESSIVE SCHOOLHOUSE 2013 - 34 - 2013 - 2014 PARENT HANDBOOK by, Leo Buscaglia, Ph.D. Schools should be the most joyous places in the world because learning is the greatest joy. "Living, Loving and Learning," was Leo Buscaglia's seventh book to be published. An extraordinary educator and philosopher, Leo lectured extensively world wide throughout his life. This particular book is a collection of his lectures. The essence of this book reflects an underlying philosophy best reflected in the quote, "Ideal teachers are those who use themselves as bridges over which they invite their students to cross, then having facilitated their crossing, joyfully collapse, encouraging them to create bridges of their own." Leo was most determined to build bridges in his life. This book stands to represent a body of knowledge that reflects the legacy of a man whose wish was to "shake the complacency of humanity." "You want to be the most educated, the most brilliant, the most exciting, the most versatile, the most creative individual in the world, because then you can give it away; and the only reason you have anything is to give it away." Leo's work addresses the human side of learning and challenges all of us to develop our full potential as unique individuals. He reminds us that human potential is really unlimited in scope, since potential also means "unlimited possibilities." "Happiness comes only when we push our brains and our hearts to the farthest reaches of which we are capable." Leo reminds us that the most essential thing we have to give our children is who and what we are at any given moment. "Schools should be the most joyful places in the world because, learning is the greatest joy." Since teachers are guides and mediate children's learning experiences, the process is essentially one of sharing. The human side of learning requires teachers and parents to take responsibility for their own development and growth so they have more to share with children in their learning process. "No matter who we are today, we have the opportunity to change." All research confirms that behavior is learned, so we have the opportunity everyday to unlearn behavior and relearn it. Even though human beings have the opportunity to grow in potential, not everyone shares the same range of ability to bring about change in themselves. Schools who address the human side of learning in their curriculum offer children the advantage of learning about themselves. “The most important needs of all are what we need in ourselves; a need to be seen, a need to be known, a need to be recognized, a need for achievement, a need to enjoy our world, a need to see the continual wonder of life." The reality is that we never stop needing each other, the process depends on it! Living, Loving and Learning