The Valley School creates educational experiences that encourage children's innate passion for learning through abundant opportunities for intellectual exploration, imaginative thinking and the practice of kindness.
The Valley School community—parents, children, faculty and administration—puts the positive educational experience of children at the center of everything it does, guided by the following values:
- Respect for individuality
As a founding principle, the school understands that while society’s expectations will change, the basic needs of children remain the same. Valley honors the proven developmental stages of childhood and does not impose superficially accelerated academic expectations on young children. Demands placed on children to perform academically at earlier ages are not only inappropriate but have no correlation to later academic success. Valley looks for challenges appropriate to the child that open the mind and foster learning and growth.
Our educational philosophy shapes every aspect of school life. From recess activities to thematic units, the principles behind our approach are apparent every day.
- Emotional and social intelligence go hand-in-hand with academic studies because children learn best when they are happy and secure
- Play, imagination and exploration are vital to a child’s development
- Children should be taught as individuals, in ways that best suit the child's stage of development and learning style
- Open-ended materials and inquiry in the classroom foster lifelong curiosity, creativity and growth
- A love of learning is developed through experience, inquiry and imagination and results in independent and reflective thinkers
- A complete education cultivates depth of character including empathy, moral courage, sense of responsibility, and commitment to justice
- Effective teachers create an environment where learning is joyful and exciting, children are met with appropriate challenges and independence and group cooperation are both highly valued