The more we understand about how we learn, the more we realize that the best environments for learning are the most natural ones. Learner-driven and directed. Fresh air, water, and sand. Conversation and exposures. True adventures rarely exist inside human-created buildings that we call school.
At Mount Vernon we have redesigned our play spaces to include zones that promote curiosity through exploration. These zones include noise and music, gardens, landforms, slides, forts, weaving looms, sandboxes, labyrinths, and open spaces. Tree cookies, twigs, and branches are available for building. Paper, fabrics, and yarn are used for art. Mallets and pebbles make a joyful noise. Outside in a natural park-like environment, children develop gross and fine motor skills, social negotiation skills, along with mindsets to communicate, collaborate, innovate, design, and create.