The Importance of Starting Independent Education Early
For many parents, the conversation surrounding what kind of education they want for their child begins even before the child is born. Exploring local schools, comparing curriculums, and learning about different enrichment programs can play a large role in deciding what school is the right choice for your child’s early education. A student’s early years can provide the foundation they need to develop positive learning habits, build confidence and independence, and nurture their growing minds.
For young students, an independent school education can provide a variety of benefits including a nurturing environment, a supportive community of teachers and peers, and a space to explore and develop their interests.
Holistic Development of the Child: Mind, Body, and Spirit
In most public school classrooms, students are taught based on state-wide standards and curriculums, leaving little room to provide individual tutoring and attention. For younger students in particular, such as those in PK3 and PK4, public school classrooms can feel like an extension of a daycare, where students are simply being watched rather than nurtured and challenged.
Independent schools, such as Canterbury, use a “whole child” approach to develop a child’s mind, body, and spirit. Through tailored lessons and individualized classroom instruction, young students experience engaging hands-on activities that encourage collaboration, problem-solving, creativity, independence, and physical wellness. When young students build these skills early on, they develop positive habits and a sense of a routine that prepare them for higher education. The daily practice of physical wellness in the motor lab, character development at flag ceremony, and interactive experiments in the marine lab are a few ways Canterbury students establish discipline and a love for learning.
The Benefits of Small Community
When young students begin their journey into the classroom, they often face some challenges as they work to find their independence, establish an academic routine, and build confidence away from their home environment. Small class sizes and a low teacher-student ratio provide young students with the supportive environment they need to thrive. Independent schools also provide parents with the opportunity to get involved on campus, as a way to connect with teachers, help them stay informed, and feel connected to their child’s academic experience and personal growth.
At Canterbury, classrooms follow a 1:7 teacher-student ratio to provide students with the attention and care they need to thrive. The small class size is also an incredible way for young students to develop their social skills and confidence. When all students can interact and collaborate on classroom tasks, they begin to form connections and create a positive association with being at school. Canterbury also hosts a weekly flag ceremony to celebrate their students’ achievements, connect with families, and encourage positivity on campus.
Positive Foundation for Future Learning
An independent school education builds a strong foundation for students in their early years, as they begin to familiarize themselves with their moving bodies and working minds. Young students in PK3 and PK4 experience developmental stages where they are reaching new social-emotional, cognitive, language, and physical milestones. At this stage, students are primed for learning and it is important to teach them the tools they’ll need in higher levels of education.
Canterbury’s curriculum also establishes an exploratory foundation that encourages students to lean into their interests and keep an open mind. Whether it’s caring for a classroom pet, planting new seeds in the outdoor nursery, or working on their motor skills, Canterbury students experience a robust curriculum crafted to inspire and motivate them.
Getting a Head Start on Independent School Education
With programs beginning in PK3 and PK4, Canterbury provides their lower school students a balanced and challenging program where confidence, talent, friendship, and individuality flourish.
To get in touch with our Admission Office and learn more about our lower school curriculum, visit our inquiry form here and we will be in contact with you to provide more information or schedule a tour.