Progressive schools are different from traditional schools. Their educational philosophies and teaching methods are different. Because there are so few progressive schools, relatively speaking - only about 75 schools call themselves progressive - most people are surprised when they discover that these schools even exist.
First, here is some of the background on the progressive movement here in the United States. The easiest way to understand how progressivism got started in this country is to realize that educators were also philosophers. For example, the Vermont native John Dewey (1859-1952) who founded the University of Chicago's Laboratory School which many consider the flagship of progressive education, was a distinguished philosopher as well as an educator. In a nutshell, Dewey knew that education was the way to make sweeping changes in society. After he had left the University of Chicago, Dewey founded The New School in New York. The foundation of Dewey's approach to education rests on three lectures he gave back in the 1890s to raise money for his Laboratory School. The School and Social Progress, the School and the Life of the Child, and Waste in Education put forth Dewey's fundamental beliefs that education needs to be an interactive process in which the child discovers the relevance of his lessons to the real world outside.
Dewey did not like the segmentation of education as it progressed from the kindergarten years to high school. He espoused a unified approach which would ultimately produce capable
It is a humbling moment for parents when they realize that their child is gifted. If we accept the definition of gifted as being something along these lines:
"A gifted person is someone who shows, or has the potential for showing, an exceptional level of performance in one or more areas of expression." ....National Association of Gifted Children
It dawns on us that we have a huge responsibility on our hands. Because you have enriched your child's learning since birth, you understandably are anxious about placing him in a school setting where both his teachers and his peers might misunderstand his giftedness. Ideally, you want him to blossom and flourish in a formal school setting; however you don't want limits placed on how fast he advances. If he decides to explore a particular subject in depth, you want him to be able to do that. If he is doing math several years ahead of his grade level, you want him to have an accelerated math program. You also want him to socialize in as normal a manner as possible. Learning how to fit in is paramount as he matures. Fortunately, you have several options available. Homeschooling, charter schools, talented and gifted programs run by your local school district, your local public school, and private schools are all possibilities into which you should look.
Start by looking for schools in the web. Ask friends and family for their recommendations. Once you have a short list of schools and programs
Program: "The school's purpose is to educate students in a wholesome, challenging environment that will
- Chewonki Semester School
- Coastal Studies for Girls
- The Conserve School
- The Island School
- The Mountain School Program Of Milton Academy
- The Outdoor Academy of the Southern Appalachians
- The Oxbow School
- The Rocky Mountain Semester
- The School for Ethics and Global Leadership
- Swiss Semester
- The Woolman Semester At Sierra Friends Center