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  Experience the Joy of learning

The Joule School  

Educational Philosophy

Kids are unique! Some children need the freedom to explore and experiment, and quickly become bored and frustrated with worksheets and lecture. Others find the movement and noise of a busy, hands-on classroom overwhelming, and perform better in a classroom with a more traditional structure. The most important part of choosing a school is finding the perfect fit for your kids. A match between an academic program and your child's learning style will ensure that they maintain a positive attitude towards school and are challenged, but not overwhelmed, by the curriculum.


Every school follows an educational philosophy, which is a broad idea about the purpose and best method of educating children. It determines how the students are taught, which curriculum is used, and which teachers are hired. A match between your ideas and the school's philosophy will help ensure that you end up happy with the teachers, curriculum, and structure of the classroom after enrollment. Knowing your child as you do, think about which classroom would help them be happy, motivated, and eager to learn. Since their daily experience in the classroom will affect their attitude about school and effort towards schoolwork, choosing the educational method that is right for them is essential.


We use an experiential teaching approach, which is one of the four primary educational philosophies. This guide can help you determine if experiential education is right for your child, or if another method is a better match. After all, while many students can adapt to any classroom, most children will ultimately be happier and try harder in a program which is well-suited to their individual talents. 

Learn More About The Four Educational Philosophies

The Four:

Classical

Conventional

Experiential

Student-Led

Leadership

Heavily Authoritarian

Authoritarian

Somewhat Egalitarian

Laissez-Faire

Teacher's Role

The teacher is a "sage on the stage." Classrooms are fairly rigid and structured.

The teacher is in control, but degree of control varies based on their personality.

The teacher is the leader, but is in partnership with the student. The students have a significant voice in their education.

Teacher is a "guide on the side." The student has the lead role in directing their studies. 

Buzzwords

The Trivium

Classical Education

Direct Instruction

Traditional Method

Hands-On Education

Project-Based Learning (PBL)

Alternative Education

Whole Child Education

Democratic Education

Unschooling

Philosophy

Students should study the classical knowledge of ancient Greece and Rome through repetition and memorization.

Students should learn by listening to their teacher and following directions.

Students should study all subjects, and the connections between them, by moving, exploring, and experimenting.

Students should choose what they want to study, and learn by exploring at their own pace.

Used By

Classical Schools

Traditional Private Schools

Public Schools

Charter Schools

Traditional Private Schools

The Joule School

Reggio Emilia Schools

Waldorf Schools

Montessori Schools

Progressive Private Schools

Montessori Schools

Reggio Emilia Schools

Sudbury Schools

Format:‚Äč

Classical

Memorization and Drill

Conventional

Taking Notes at a Desk

Active

Moving and Experimenting

Student-Led

Student's Choice

How Teachers Teach

Students copy information, such as spelling words, multiple times. Recitation, drilling of facts, and worksheets form the core of the curriculum for most students.

Lecture or computer delivery is the standard method of instruction. The teacher will explain a concept, then assign sections of practice work for students to review the concepts taught in class and prepare for quizzes and tests.  

The teacher converts the concept to be learned into a problem that can be solved through investigation. They develop hands-on lessons and materials to help students grasp and understand concepts. Formal testing is used to evaluate learners' progress.

The student selects the lessons and tasks that they would like study. Teachers are available to coax students and answer questions if they get stuck on a task, but they defer to the interests of the child. Self-motivation is key.

How Students Learn

Students copy information, such as spelling words, multiple times. Recitation, drilling of facts, and worksheets form the core of the curriculum for most students.

Students listen to their teacher (auditory delivery). They may create book reports, projects, or complete worksheets. Some schools emphasize test prep.

Classes are interdisciplinary, e.g., English and History are taught together. Students build, draw, and experiment to learn the concepts in each course. Rhyming songs and games are used for memorization. 

Instruction is self-paced and student initiated. The student selects an activity, project, or play and works on it until they decide to switch to a new topic.

In the Classroom

Expect to see neat rows of desks, traditional teaching methods such as a blackboard and projector screen, and a long reading list with classic texts. Classes are divded by age. Students will usually use a workbook/worksheet to do their homework (homework loads tend to be large). 

Lectures may be accompanied by YouTube clips or web surfing. Students will be seated at a desk or table, depending on the teacher. Classes are divided by age. Homework will usually consist of reports, projects, and/or worksheets.

Many lessons are collaborative, and students often work in groups or pairs. Classes are generally multi-age. Most lessons include real-world materials and worksheets are rare. Homework varies by school. Classrooms are busy, very active, and students are typically conversing with each other. 

Students in the classroom will be working on different tasks independently or with a teacher. Classrooms are generally multi-age. Homework occurs only if students choose to pursue it.