top of page

Frequently Asked Questions

How do you approach academics and assessment? 

Our program does not embrace a traditional, teacher-centric approach to academics or educational standards. Our program is child-centric and focused offering opportunities that give children a sense of autonomy over their goals and their natural learning process. We have an "open door" policy for students and families to ask questions, discuss goals or otherwise contribute to their individual learning and growth. 

What are the benefits and drawbacks of a mixed-age environment? 

Mixed age learning is a new concept to many families and differs from the traditional model of learning among peers of the same age. However, mixed-age learning has been shown to have many benefits for children of all ages. Competiton is largely eliminated in a mixed-age environment, leading to increased self-esteem and self-efficacy. The pace of mixed-age learning is highly individualized and children are recognized for their unique abilities and contributions. Mixed-age learning allows older children to mentor younger children, increasing their competence while giving younger children a sense of belonging. Mixed-age environments do have some challenges, which can be overcome with the careful attention of teachers. These include ensuring that each child (particularly older learners) is meeting their potential and monitoring the confidence levels of younger learners. Overall, mixed-age learning environments have been shown to be both socially and academically beneficial to learners of all ages. 

Is year-round learning time in the outdoors safe? 

Nature-based and outdoor learning is rooted in the idea of "supported risk-taking." Children can take natural risks in nature (such as climbing a tree, crossing a creek, etc.) while under the supervision of teachers. Supported risk-taking allows children to explore their boundaries, develop healthy risk assessment skills, and experience the rewards and resiliency that come from challenges. Time outdoors in all seasons is possible by utilizing specific clothing and gear appropriate to the conditions. Children enjoy playing in the rain (in waterproof gear!) and bundling up for a snow day. Additionally, learning together in all conditions helps children become seasonally aware, adaptable to change, and develop resiliency. Our teachers monitor weather conditions daily and take appropriate steps to maintain the comfort and safety of the children at all times. 

Our faith is important to us. Will my child be comfortable in your program?  Our program is secular, there is no ideology or doctrine. We embrace a spirit of diversity and inclusion for children and families of all faiths. Our program is focused on building community, connecting with nature, and experiencing the joy of authentic, child-centered learning. 

bottom of page