A Different Way of Looking At the World

Thought I would give the WordPress: Daily Post ..                                                  Daily Writing Prompt a try. Today’s Prompt is:

The New School : You get to redesign school as we know it from the ground up. Will you do away with reading, writing, and arithmetic? What skills and knowledge will your school focus on imparting to young minds?

The classrooms of the  Massey Global School have a small permanent physical campus set in Pontone Italy. There are three tiers of achievement featured at the Massey Global School :

Elementary age children learn the basics of reading, composition, a foreign language of their choice, literature, arithmetic, history, the arts, music, and sciences. There is emphasis on the humanities, and on the care of the students physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual health. There are life skill classes on economics, global travel skills, relationships, cooking, safety, social skills, and survival skills. .

The curriculum is integrated so that reading is taught based on and with the current sciences, literature, history materials being used. Composition skills are woven within the subjects, and history and include the music, literature, and art of the period. Integration is fluid and allows for individual teachers to individually design using the designated academic material to be covered. Out of classroom study/field trips/activities  are limited to within Italy during elementary study.

Use of computers and technology skills is taught one day per week only. There is  a science lab on site, an excellent library, a computer resource lab, a health spa, and an acreage large enough to provide students freedom to study, explore, and have a sense of place with a specific natural habitat over an extended period of time. There are no cell phones permitted on campus. Landline phones and access to phones are  available throughout the campus. All computer use and storage  is done within the computer science area. There is no television at the school.

There are several greenhouse and garden areas on campus where students study horticulture, food production, and ornamental plant growing. Much of the produce is consumed on site in the school dining room and leisure facility.

Additional recreational activities include Equestrian, Tai Chi,  mountain climbing, flight, sailing, and chess,  offered by highly skilled and certified instructors.

Once students have reached the age of thirteen, and mastered the elementary level skills both academically and socially, they have the opportunity to enroll in the Massey Global School’s Secondary Program where under the supervision of  two instructors per six students they travel to a variety of  countries where they are embedded  in a village, town, or city, where they study the language, culture, history, social, government, and arts, with hands on experiences as well as academics. Opportunities for learning photography, film, interviewing, cooking or skills specific to the country and culture are arranged. Study/lecture opportunities offered by available learning institutions are made available. Each foreign residence lasts six months. During this period, students are asked to consider what areas of interest they may want to pursue as a profession, explore those professions, and make choices of residential host country curriculum choices that will provide them experiences and opportunities to explore those interests.

In addition to academic proficiency and a minimum of three -six month periods living in foreign countries, each Student must compete 200 hours of Community Service in their country of origin to  have completed the          Massey Global School Secondary Program.

At the age of eighteen, a student who has achieved a Secondary Education Certificate from Massey Global School, are invited to choose an area of professional interest and receive all of the global resources available to       Massey Global School to further their study, attain employment, sponsors, research funds, internships, apprenticeships, whatever their next step is to succeed whether in the arts, science, business, or humanities.

All teachers   have a minimum of a Masters Degree in Education, a specialized area of expertise and study. Our teachers are well compensated and valued, have a full health and benefits package, and are provided housing for themselves and their families at no charge on the main Pontone Campus. There is a six students per teacher ratio on campus and a two teacher per six student ratio off campus.

Massey Global School currently has 200 students total. There is a full boarding or day attendance option.  There is currently a waiting list than spans twenty years out including future born children. Ability to pay is not a consideration for enrollment.  Tuition is free due to the generous multi-billion dollar legacy  of the JoHannaMassey.com Foundation.

A Board of Regents oversees the School’s operation. This consists of six  Massey family members with lifetime appointments, who chose their successor.  In addition,  one faculty representative from each of the three level of study, one community representative, and one employee representative from each division of operation. Each non family member holds a  three year position as a Regent to be decided by their peers. A majority of Massey Family Members of the Regents Board must agree to any decision before the Regents, and all Regents must vote.

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Evolved Class of 2015 Graduates

What makes a child gifted and talented may not always be good grades in school, but a different way of looking at the world and learning.                           Chuck Grassley

Today’s Music: Brick in The Wall- Pink Floyd

19 thoughts on “A Different Way of Looking At the World

  1. What an incredible vision! If only it were attainable in reality. Not to exclude the current system, but to have it offered as an alternative for children who don’t do well at rote learning. Learning through living, such a nicer idea.

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  2. Awesome idea for a school! Would love to see it come true! Do you really live in Italy? Don’t think I caught that before. I visited Italy in 2014 for a brief time and fell in love with it, want to go back!!

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    1. I live in the Verde Valley in the United States. Travel to and do extended stays in Italy whenever possible. Small out of the way places favored where renting accommodations are inexpensive, the local markets have such fresh food, and the people are so warm and welcoming.
      But my school was to be of my own creative making so I figured I would start with the place I believe such a place and the students could thrive.

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  3. My kind of school!! One day,I really hope our schools do look like this!!! For now, as a teacher of 30 years, I try to instill a love of learning,an appetite for knowledge, a sense of wonder, and questioning, into my 4th graders. Those are my goals 🙂

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    1. Oh this is indeed my fantasy school. But wait, wasn’t that the prompt?! To create my own school!
      This post was inspired when I Listened to a radio piece on NPR this morning on how teachers in the United States are spending record amounts of their own money to supply their classrooms. Average in US currently is $500.00 out of pocket for necessary supplies.
      Have taught school..years ago, and just the idea of either the parents or the children having to purchase own supplies would never have even been considered. So I turned off the radio and wrote out my Fantasy School.
      I applaud your thirty years of teaching!

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      1. Thank you:-) I see the light at the end of the tunnel!!! Yes we do spend quite a bit of our own money. My budget is very small under $500 and with that I have to purchase everything I need…including paper!!!! So I tend to go over and use my own money. What grade level/subject did you teach??

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        1. I was ‘the long term substitute’ for the College Prep Science& English Depts for the junior and senior grades of an urban high school. I showed up when a teacher would be out for more than thirty days. I could basically be tossed in anywhere and be just fine and keep the students on schedule for learning and continuity. It was a very good fit. I enjoyed it immensely.

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