Wednesday, November 10, 2010

For Whom Do The Bells Toll?

The Village School.

Who exactly is it for?  

Is it for people with learning differences?
Is it for crunchy granola children?
Is it for children from working class families?
What about people who want to go to college?  (I'm dying to meet the four year old that knows this and is planning for it.)
Is it for "average joe" kids?
For "gifted" learners?

The answer is a resounding Yes!  All of the above and all of the in-betweens, arounds and besides.

Who it's not for:  people who are still bound to the conventional model of "doing life".  That is, parents who believe that the only way to have a happy life is to be guaranteed a spot at a(n ivy league or comparable) tertiary institution, to be competitive in the job market, and to ultimately make lots and lots of money and all the accoutrements of that lifestyle account balance.

I am not judging.  I am not trying to be exclusive (quite the opposite).  I am being realistic.  The Village School is about a new world; a new way.  Idealistic?  Absolutely.

We hope to participate in the lives of families wishing to raise people who:

  • know themselves 
  • can find happiness in the simple things
  • know how they learn
  • can teach themselves anything
  • value community
  • are passionate about their place in the world
  • are pioneers who don't simply accept the status quo
  • are divergent thinkers
  • solve problems with innovative approaches
  • can see things from other peoples perspectives, yet value their own voice as equal
  • value their own voice as imporant and can see others as equal, even if different
  • can collaborate
  • are visonaries
  • can make their own way
  • are not afraid
  • get that the world is only one seven billionth about them (Anne Lamott quote)
The list of qualities of the kind of people we hope to foster at The Village School can go on much longer.  You may notice, however, that there aren't any characteristics listed that a person can acquire through standardized, one-size-squashes-fits all curricula, testing, ("good") grades, jumping through hoops, or conforming.  

I suppose the world needs conformists; people to follow the leaders, as it were.  

Or do we?

In short, if you believe in children as natural learners (I assure you, they are - or else there would be schools to teach them how to sit up, "cruise", talk, walk and gain a basic understanding of the complex world around them) and if you believe that a new way is possible - 

then The Village School is for you. 

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