We celebrate each student’s unique path to discover and become the person they are meant to be. Student well-being is a cornerstone of success and happiness, and in our elementary school we care about our students’ growth as learners and as individuals.
Our elementary school comprises the Early Childhood Center (ECC), a purpose-built facility for our youngest learners in pre-kindergarten through grade 2, just a short walk from our main campus, and the Upper Elementary school for grades 3 and 4 on our main campus.
The ASH multi-age pre-kindergarten program offers a vibrant and joyous learning environment, with an emphasis on ‘hands-on learning that nurtures and builds on each child's strengths and intrinsic motivations. Our mixed-age classes of 3-5-year-olds provide unique and optimal opportunities for both younger and older children's growth and development. The benefits of a multi-age class are strongly supported by theory and research, which highlight the following key factors:
- Children learn to be both leaders and followers. They learn to compromise and collaborate; to plan and negotiate; to work in a group or by themselves. It is much like a family grouping in that there is a wide range of strengths and interests, where children inspire, support, and care for each other.
- Older learners benefit from the chance to support younger learners and build their confidence and leadership skills. The younger learners also benefit as they gain more emotional support and see their older peers modeling positive behavior.
- Children will develop friendships and engage in learning just as they would in the same age settings, with the bonus of being able to access peer support. Children gain motivation from each other and the confidence they need to move forward.
- Caring, empathetic, and respectful relationships are the core foundation of our elementary school, where we view children as strong, competent, and capable individuals who are each unique and special. Teachers plan and tailor learning for each child, rather than setting an instruction pace for a whole group. Combining this emergent curriculum approach with a multi-age class, the child is truly at the center of their learning.
We focus on harnessing natural curiosity, mastering foundational learning skills, questioning the world around us and building trusting relationships. Our students learn through inquiry and play, and our well-resourced learning spaces offer abundant opportunities to develop these skills and prompt collaboration.
As a community of learners, we place a high value on growth mindsets, trying new and different things and stepping out of our comfort zones. We understand that making mistakes is an important part of learning. Our pre-kindergarten through grade 4 program offers core academic subjects and provides a strong foundation in social awareness. We round things out with classes in music, art, technology, Dutch, and physical education.
THE ASH MISSION
We build a better world as we become better human beings, hear and value every voice, keep every promise, and celebrate every achievement.
THE ASH VISION
We are determined to create a school where everyone is confident and able to take control of their own learning, and the world is our classroom.