Our school’s emphasis on conflict resolution and open-ended activities work well in a mixed-age classroom — reinforcing social skills for older children, while maintaining an atmosphere that allows younger children to learn to be in charge of themselves.
What We Believe
- Children benefit most when the teacher and parents have an opportunity to work together.
- Children can learn and take responsibility for their actions when given clear direction and realistic expectations.
- A child’s emotional, social, physical and intellectual development is inter-related. Therefore, we seek to educate the whole child.
- Children learn best when they actively explore their environment through play.
- Children deserve the opportunity to learn and grow at their own pace.
- Children should be free to explore and make choices.
- We must respect our children, their minds and their bodies.
Why are We a Mixed Age School? In a Nutshell…
Children in multi-age classrooms tend to:
- Develop more empathy and caring behaviors. The presence of younger children seems to make obvious the need to be careful with each other and to comfort a sad or hurt peer.
- Be better self-regulators. When older children are given the responsibility of reminding younger ones of the rules, their ability to follow the rules seems to improve.
- Not be limited in their friendships or in the quality of those interactions.
- Participate more fully in a wider range of activities. While younger children can participate in more complex and extended play, older children have more leadership opportunities, allowing them greater practice and mastery of social skills.
- Be less competitive and more likely to value skills that are related to one’s individuality rather than age, size, or gender.
- Have the opportunity to learn from someone who is only “one rung up on them” instead of an adult. This seems to be a highly effective strategy.