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EDUCATIONAL FRAMEWORK

The Terra Verde educational experience is built around four major themes.

THE RESPONSIVE CLASSROOM APPROACH

At Terra Verde, we believe that children learn best when equal emphasis is placed on academic and social-emotional skills. We seek to educate and nurture the whole child- intellectually, emotionally, and socially. We’re proud to be a Responsive Classroom school. Seven principles guide the Responsive Classroom approach:

  1. The social curriculum is as important as the academic curriculum.
  2. How children learn is as important as what they learn: Process and content go hand in hand.
  3.  The greatest cognitive growth occurs through social interaction.
  4. To be successful academically and socially, children need a set of social skills: cooperation, assertion, responsibility, empathy, and self-control.
  5. Knowing the children we teach—individually, culturally, and developmentally—is as important as knowing the content we teach.
  6. Knowing the families of the children we teach and working with them as partners is essential to children’s education.
  7. How the adults at school work together is as important as their individual competence: Lasting change begins with the adult community.
  8. Learn more about our Responsive Classroom practices under the curriculum tab.

INSTRUCTION IN CORE VIRTUES 

Terra Verde’s teachers are mindful and passionate about modeling and inspiring virtuous behaviors. Using the Core Virtues curriculum by Mary Beth Klee as a springboard, the school focuses on a different intellectual, moral, or civic virtue each month. The monthly study begins with quality children’s literature, then expands into storytelling, rich discussion amongst peers, inspired art projects, and real-life application. I encourage you to read more about past virtue studies under the “Core Virtues” tab.

INDIVIDUALIZATION IN READING, WRITING, AND MATH

Instruction in the core subjects of reading, writing, and math is tailored to meet the needs of our diverse group of learners. Recognizing that no one curriculum is suitable for all learning styles, our teachers use their knowledge to adapt lessons for students who need an increased challenge as well as one-on-one support. The majority of our students work above grade level in one or more subject areas, and students who need additional time and practice are appropriately supported. Teachers and parents build positive relationships and engage in frequent, meaningful communication. Parents are encouraged to participate in goal setting and progress monitoring, spend time in the classroom, and to extend the learning at home.

ENVIRONMENTAL EDUCATION

“Unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot, nothing is going to get better. It’s not.” These timeless words by Dr. Seuss greet visitors to our building. At Terra Verde, we take those words to heart. Our environmental education program immerses children in the natural world, inspires an appreciation for our planet, and engages students in action-based solutions for environmental sustainability.