I, along with several other parents, and with some brilliant NYC educators as advisors, am starting a progressive private school in which children will be taught in French and English (with a significant Mandarin component). The program will be child-centered, rich in the arts (visual, dance, and music with a lot of drama-based instruction in all subjects), and based on the philosophy of discovery by doing.
Science will be an important part of school life. Math concepts will be examined in context, not by rote memorization. Children will learn life skills such as how to negotiate conflicts. Daily physical activity will be a high priority.
The curriculum will be loosely (at first) based on the Primary Years Programme of the International Baccalaureate, with a healthy dose of Bank Street. Children are natural learners and scientists, performing experiments everywhere they go. Our biggest challenge is to create an environment for learning that keeps their curiosity intact.
Instruction will be mostly in French and English, with regular and significant exposure to Mandarin. Ours is not a "dabbling" school. Children will be immersed in whatever it is they are studying that day/week/month. No 45-minute, once-a-week classes here.
The school will open officially in fall 2012. However, we are doing a “soft” opening in fall 2011 with a smaller “co-op” group of children, who will be our first students. The class will be mixed-age and will break into groups sometimes based on level/ability and sometimes based on interests.
We expect our 2011 class to be made up of 6-10 children between the ages of 5 and 8. If you are interested in our school, or in being in our inaugural class, please contact me for more information. I will send you information about the school, my advisors, and myself. I can’t give firm tuition numbers; however, our hope is to make the school affordable for most with a sliding tuition scale. We don't have a firm location yet, but the school will be in Brooklyn.
Contact Jen at francochine at yahoo . com
Here’s a taste of what inspires us: