Own yourself. Own your actions.
Personal responsibility is learned through practice. Here, students experience the benefits and challenges of being in charge of their own time and behavior.
Be a role model.
Every student is unique. So is the example they offer to others. Alpine Valley School affords students the opportunity to realize and model their strengths, and take pride in leading by example.
Play a part in your community.
Students and staff are equally responsible for the well-being of the school community. Real opportunities for leadership and an equal vote create a context where students are empowered to share ownership of their environment.
Become who you really are.
People are in a perpetual process of growth and discovery. This is true for children and adults alike. Here, students have the time and freedom to explore their interests. As a result, they discover what’s meaningful to them, and self-awareness becomes an integral part of their character.
Expect to be respected.
Students have rights. They have the right to their safety. They have the right to their time and personal space. At Alpine Valley School, a participatory justice system based on testimony and evidence protects students’ rights.
Students at Alpine Valley School initiate and control their own education. In the school’s supportive environment, they practice the skills and habits that make them masters of lifelong learning.
Every voice matters.
A 5-year-old can contribute as much to a conversation as an 18-year-old. Here, this is the norm. People of all ages interact freely, engaging each other in their interests, activities, and conversations.
Explore. Create. Play.
Children are born curious and creative, with a powerful drive to learn. Here, students use the tools of play, interaction, and exploration to master their environment. They grow into confident, independent adults, successful in a variety of fields.
In this final episode of our Core Learning podcast series, our guest Bruce Smith talks about how students at self-directed democratic schools learn math. Bruce has decades of experience as a staff member in self-directed education, and has worked at several different schools around the US. While at Alpine Valley School, he was the resident math teacher and he outlines how the language of numbers shows up in student’s daily lives and how classes, when they happen, are structured. Visit the Show Notes page for more information.