"The Whole School’s belief is that optimum learning occurs by honoring each child’s social and emotional needs, inherent curiosity, imagination and enthusiasm. Helping children to recognize their own potential is essential to fostering leadership, confidence, self-esteem and a life long love of learning The Whole School aims to foster the social, emotional, spiritual, physical and intellectual growth of every child. The full potential of learners is nurtured in a safe, non-competitive, inspiring environment thereby promoting a life long love of learning. Emphasis is placed on artistic expression, environmental stewardship, experiential learning and social justice. Parents collaborate with teachers, are active volunteers and key to the nurturing social climate. "
WHATS HAPPENING AT THE WHOLE SCHOOL
All classes at The Whole School are small sized, multi-age and cultivate a non-competitive environment. These elements are felt to be crucial to ensure that our students experience a secure, nurturing environment. This safe environment enables them to become risk-takers who trust enough to make mistakes and leaders who are willing to express their own opinions openly and freely.
Our non-competitive approach, which includes no use of grades in the classrooms, empowers the students to appreciate differences and enjoy each others’ successes. Self-evaluation and self-motivation are keys to the assessment of these goals.
Our classrooms are configured so that students move through a variety of different cooperative groupings based on their individualized instruction and non-graded learning plans. Our school values the safety and compassion of continuous progress. To enable each student to experience success, teachers work one on one with the students to develop ongoing, individual, achievable goals.
CIRCLE OF COURAGE
The Circle of Courage is a model of youth empowerment supported by contemporary research, the heritage of early youth work pioneers and Native philosophies of child care.
The model is encompassed in four core values: belonging, mastery, independence, and generosity. The central theme of this model is that a set of shared values must exist in any community to create environments that ultimately benefit all.
When the Whole School began learning about the Circle of Courage model, it seemed to reflect many of the values we hold important as a community and provide a structure through which we could bring these teachings to the children and parents of the community.
The teachers quickly integrated Circle of Courage teachings into the daily curriculum and also use it to support our wholistic approach to tracking the progress of each child. It has been a natural process of integrating the ‘Virtues Program’ of the Whole School with the values brought forth through the Circle of Courage.
“I spent the first six years of my school career at The Whole School and absolutely loved it; it gave me a sense of community and respect for myself and the people around me. I attribute much of my success, academic and otherwise, to my time spent at the Whole School.” Cairo Parker, age 29, received the Governor General’s Academic Medal for High School
“After The Whole School, I graduated LVR on the honor roll with a 90%+ average, graduated UBC in the top 10% of my class with an A+ average… At the Whole School I was given the opportunity and freedom to push myself, work on projects independently which helped me develop a sense of drive contributing to my success as a high school and University student.” Saja Edwards, age 23
“I am continually grateful for my experience at The Whole School. I feel it helped to foster in me an interest in learning and engaging with the world, academically and otherwise. When I first went to college many of my teachers seemed impressed with my ability to think critically and analytically and with my writing skill. The Whole School had a lot to do with that.” Dylan Clover, age 26
“The Whole School gave me so much… understanding and valuing kind and caring relationships, allowing my creativity to grow, making me confident in myself and my abilities… made me a more whole person who is interested in the welfare of others and the world.” Miryam Bishop, age 26
“I was encouraged to tap into my own creativity and use my inner strength and independent thinking. We were treated as competent and intelligent young people. The Whole School had a lasting impact on who I am and who I continue to aspire to be… a desire to connect with people with love, warmth, understanding and contribute to a harmonious and supportive society.” Lilah Precious, age 27