We have created a unique arts based curriculum approach that builds dynamic thinking skills in all students. The SENSEI Through Arts Approach © utilizes Howard Gardener’s multiple intelligences approach as well as recognizes the heightened sensory experiences of children today. While we appreciate the product, a play or painting, we find that our real success comes in honoring the experience of the process of creating, in which every child has a place and a part.
Our lessons and activities are structured to include as many of the senses as possible. This allows for information to be delivered while engaging the senses and creating positive associations that are stored in a retrievable memory bank that enhances out flowing information.
Using the arts to experience subjects by creating music, art work, performances and all forms, enables deeper and more rounded topical and cultural understanding. It prompts self-expression and strengthens right brained thinking.
We are designing open ended lessons that create new connections that establish dynamic thinking and actions. This approach raises standardized test scores, but focuses on higher end thinking skills rather than rote memorization.
Each student has a social curriculum built into their plan. We utilize the areas of strength in children on the spectrum to create well planned and supported opportunities to succeed in social situations that feel natural to the entire group. Typical students benefit from routine support group time in which to explore and confidentially express their feelings.
This has a multi-faceted meaning to our program. Our school’s natural setting and outdoor class space and areas that serve to provide each family member with stress relieving benefits. The research proven regulatory benefits to the body and mind provided by nature are important. Our indoor space is simple with soft colors as well as a home like feel. We also recognize it is essential to offer an environmental sciences approach to education.
It is essential to pre plan activities and to assign roles to each student. This means that a child is not part of “inclusion” in a room, but a viable and active part of being included in and experiencing every activity.
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