EDUCATION FOR THE WHOLE CHILD
The Gardner School experience is enriched by a range of creative, developmentally challenging and dynamic specialist subjects. Music, Art, PE, Science and Spanish are taught across the school and together help Gardner deliver an education for the whole child.
Music at Gardner is based on the Orff Schulwerk approach to teaching and learning music. It is based on things children like to do: sing, chant rhymes, clap, dance and keep a beat on anything they can reach. Human instincts are directed into learning music by hearing and making music first, then reading and writing it later—this is the same way we all acquire language. This is also the way The Gardner School teaches music.
Gardner artists engage in a myriad of creative, hands-on learning. The emphasis in art is on process, not product, as the students experiment with a broad range of art media and learn about many art methods. For example, young artists have a chance to discover the joys of working with tempera paint, watercolors, clay, colored pencils, oil pastels, collage materials, and printmaking processes. Emphasis is on exploration, risk-taking, and discovery, not perfect final results.
Research continues to show that Physical Education helps build healthy bodies, develops the cognitive mind, and supports social growth. Understanding the value of kinesthetic learning is important to being physically active. At Gardner, an emphasis is placed on teaching the kinds of kinesthetic lifestyle skills that pave the way for children to lead active, healthy lives.
There is a Chinese proverb that states “Tell me and I will forget. Show me and I may remember. Involve me and I will understand.” This basic idea embodies the philosophy of the science program at Gardner. Students are best taught science by doing science.
Along with actually doing science in the classroom, students are taught science using the Inquiry model. The dictionary defines Inquiry as “Seeking information by questioning.” Students from Mazama to Tahoma are constantly being asked to wonder and question about the world around them.
The primary purpose of the Spanish program at The Gardner School is to introduce students to the language in rich and meaningful ways. From preschool to eighth grade, students are provided opportunities to listen to and speak Spanish in an encouraging environment. This also helps our students expand and develop their speaking, listening and comprehension skills. Children with varying levels of skills, knowledge and learning styles are taught using a variety of methods that include many of the Multiple Intelligences. By sharing music, food art, stories, and dance from Spanish speaking cultures, our final goal is to increase students’ breadth and depth of understanding, inspiring a desire to pursue continued learning of a foreign language after Gardner.