Adults often ask me to describe a typical day at SSA. Truth be told, there is no “typical” day at our school. That’s because we practice a model of fully self-directed education, where students have wide open spaces to choose how they spend their time. The specific activities they choose are quite unpredictable, vary greatly, and depend largely on the individual child. And yet, we understand why prospective parents want a clearer picture of what actually happens on any given day. So here are some things that happen frequently enough that I feel confident including them in a description of a typical day:
Someone will create something.
A group of students will laugh together.
A staff member will ask, “What do you think?”
A child will say to another child, “I can help with that!”
Someone will feel sad.
Students will play outside.
A staff member will say, “That sounds really frustrating. Is there something you need from me?”
A student will say, “I have an idea!”
Technology will be shared and enjoyed.
Students will pretend.
Someone will get angry.
An everyday object will be turned into something magical.
Someone will feel bored.
Problems will be solved. (These may or may not involve math.)
Students will be trusted.
Conversations will flow.
A child will offer empathy to another child.
Someone will feel truly empowered.
Students will be respected.
Students will exercise their bodies in their own unique ways.
A staff member will listen deeply to a child.
Someone will feel proud.
Someone will feel unsure.
Someone will try something new.
We will all play.
We will all learn.
We will all feel grateful to be a part of SSA.