Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Something New...

Helping Hands Family School

What is a Family School?
Basically it's a family. 
I believe that the word "family" has many meanings.  I consider family to be those persons primarily responsible for a child and/or whomever the child considers to be his/her "family".  I think that caregivers and parents must work hand in hand for the good of their child.  In a Family School there is a high value placed on partnership, communication and positive change occurs when everyone cooperates.  When parents and teachers work together and act in the best interest of the whole child, the child is free to develop his or her own path to the future.  
Helping Hands Family School is my new child care & preschool program.  I've begun this journey with the support and love of my own family and have been joined along the way by the parents of the children I will come to care for in September.  I continue to be amazing and grateful, each step of the way along this path.
While leaving a job that I LOVED, and a community I have been part of for nine years was one of the most difficult things I have ever done; I know in my heart it was the best choice for my family at this time.  
I don't expect anyone else to understand the "why and how come"...that's really inside of me and for me to process, forgive and let go of.  
I will say this, every experience we have, shapes us into the person we need to be to experience the journey a little bit further up the road.  And, if we are able to be open to the education we are receiving, we will leave one adventure to begin a new one, with wisdom and strength.  

I know I would never be the teacher I am today, had I not spent the last nine years listening, learning and loving the community I was blessed to be part of.  Now it's time for me to build something on my own and I'm starting with what I know.  I'm combining my dedication to the Montessori philosophy with what I see as a great need for parents to be a key part of the program.  

From this I have decided to open a "Family School".  Being a family school means that everyone's opinion matters and is important to the growth and continuation of the school as a whole.  As a parent, I understand that families will share their thoughts, talents and abilities with the school community only if and when they feel comfortable to do so.  As the Director, I will welcome contributions of time, talent, skill and energy in all forms.   And I hope that the families who become part of this new family school, will feel welcomed respected, valued and comfortable here.  
In loving PEACE,
Jennifer Howard
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Discovering Montessori said...

Congratulations!! We need more "Family Schools" !!

Jessie said...

Congratulations, Jennifer. I know you have it in you, if I lived nearby we'd come to your school in a heartbeat. I'm here if you need me :) I can't wait to hear more!!!


Erica Rubin Irish said...

Such a wonderful starting point for your new school. I'm delighted for you! ♥

Montessori For Learning said...

Congratulations! The Montessori school in which I taught was also founded on the same principles... the parents played a very critical role and joined in the learning by sharing their ideas and skills. I especially loved it when parents would come teach practical life skills (knitting, quilting, baking, scouting) and their interests (bird watching, botony) and trade skills with my class. I think you are doing a wonderful thing and also wish our educational system would take a lesson from that.

Maggie said...

A wonderful idea.

Please blog about the new school.

Back to my Primary class soon but checking in often

Namaste Montessori School said...

Congratulations! I embarked on a similar journey almost seven years ago and our school,Namaste Montessori, is growing and thriving. I attribute our success to our belief in and commitment to family as well--together as a community we have created our "Namaste Family". I wish you much success and happiness.
Namaste, Bridgid

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