The mission of IMAGINE WISDOM EDUCATION (IWE) is to offer a loving and enriching education that nurtures children to realize their greatest potential. Learners ask: “Who am I, what are my gifts and how can I contribute?” This discovery of the self serves as a transforming catalyst, turning play into the pursuit of wholeness and peaceful leadership, for children learn best when they are known, explore their passions and engage all their senses.
IWE Education encourages students to develop and achieve at their own pace and supports them to build on their passions and realize their dreams, based on Maslow’s hierarchy of growth and development. The curriculum is emergent as well as guided and provides the structure for discovery, safety and freedom to imagine, as we strive to provide in-depth learning through long term accomplishment and group participation. Our environment will inspire, motivate and teach, as well as reflect the children’s vision.
Our philosophy of education draws from imagination, circle times together and ancient native teachings, as well as drawing essential components from the Montessori, Waldorf, Orff Schulwerk and Reggio Emilia’s methods. It also encourages all to take the Landmark Education training as early as 8 years of age and implements the teachings found there even earlier to the children as situations present themselves. IWE aspires at being able to have every team and participant member of IWE have that education as a basis for powerful communication in addition to the Compassionate model from NVC.
We offer education for young people ages 2-24, but truly we have an unending education developing our humanity, as we offer guidance to parents and facilitators. Embracing Love as our foundation and utilizing Howard Gardner’s strategies of multiple intelligences (Linguistic, Logical-Mathematical, Spatial, Musical, Bodily-Kinesthetic, Interpersonal and Intrapersonal), we support children's imagination to be their inspiration.
Our commitment is to honor all kinds of diversity and is expressed by our respect, study and celebration of all cultures and their spiritual beliefs. We will not allow for bullying in any way, shape or form. Compassionate Communication is the form of communication we are all committed to master at IWE.
At least 25 % of all our students will be from populations that are marginalized in an effort to enrich the learning experience, preparing students for global living. This group of students will be eligible for partial scholarships and will be chosen after interviews to determine the desire of participation.
For our 14-24 years old group of Students, our IWE Progressive Team, we are continually interviewing businesses around town to see what they can offer these young people with regards to apprenticeships and the ability to earn some pocket money while they are still living at home and/or going to college.
We are making a list of skills that the Students can offer Businesses and matching them accordingly. For example, our local Copy and Print Center, is now on board and will call on our Team to help with rush projects and errands. Thank you Medhi for being our first Business Partner with IWE Progressive Team! It's a win-win for both parties. Please see our IWE PROGRESSIVE TEAM PAGE for more information.
Last but not least, here is a beautiful representation of one of the results IWE is striving to achieve with its students:
An anthropologist proposed a game to the kids in an African tribe. He put a basket full of fruit near a tree and told the kids that who
ever got there first won the sweet fruits. When he told them to run they all took each others hands and ran together, then sat together enjoying their treats.
When he asked them why they had run like that as one could have had all the fruits for himself they said!
''UBUNTU, how can one of us be happy if all the other ones are sad?''
'UBUNTU' in the Xhosa culture means: "I am because we are"
Our days begin together in circle, drumming, singing and sharing what is present for us as well as our intentions for the day.
On Mondays we do a full yoga class before our academic morning activities. We then disperse in smaller groups according to age and chosen subject preference, relative to language arts (phonic games and tracing, reading, writing, poetry, drama, song writing, story telling and literature in all its forms).
Around 11:30 am, we come together again to prepare lunch, eat and clean up with all age groups as one. Then we have "play" time for 45 minutes as everyone pleases.
In the afternoons "free choice" activities take place. Some days guest speakers come share their passion with the IWE youth and discussion forums takes place.
other 2 days, we go on Field Trips to various locations in order to
expose our youth to the community at large. Parents are encouraged to
participate in these outings which include but are not limited to: Artists Studios, Professionals Offices, Organic Farms, Museums, Dolphin/Whales Boat Excursions, Horse back riding, Hiking, Surfing, Swimming, Tumble Gyms, Climbing Activities, Music Recitals, Opera, Theaters, Waste Recycling Tours, Solar Power operated facilities, Garment District, Observatory, Hospitals, Cat/Dog Shelters, Rescue Ocean Animals Center, Senior housing, Service projects the children want to participate in and/or create themselves...
Our days end in circle to process and/or share our experiences, as well as to express our gratitude for each other.
FOR THE 2 to 5 YEARS OLD PROGRAM:
Morning routine begins at 9 am.
Children come together and depending the energy of the group, we either sit for circle or shake it up with music, drums and dancing first.
The circle routine consists of saying hello to each other in French (or Spanish), counting and singing a few songs in all 3 languages, learning a new skills or lesson, reading a book, playing with puppets... We sometimes share about our Week-End, taking turns, using a Talking Stick. The circle is organic and honors the mood and need of the children that day. It could last 10 minutes or up to a half hour. After our circle is completed (or half way through it) we usually have another dance, either dressed up with costumes or using drums and shakers.
Then it is our "Work Time" as done in a typical Montessori classroom. We lift up the curtains that were covering our work shelves and the children do "their work" individually, for 90% of the time, with a few exceptions for team work. The teacher is there to help if needed and to keep the children moving through activities.
Around 10:30 we clean up, change diapers or go potty, wash hands and go have snack. We sing a gratitude song before our meal and we are allowed to share our food with our friends as long as the parents agree and there are no allergies. Each family provides snack in a re-usable container.
After snack, it is time for our FREE play outside which lasts about 45 minutes. There children have a chance to learn patience by taking turns on the trampoline and the slide, social graces and sharing, as well as using many toys all at once, without needing to put them back one at a time, as we do in the classroom. This allows for the creativity of the child to run wild without any rules other than loving kindness and safety.
We close this play time with a warning song that repeats every couple of minutes, letting them know that we will soon be cleaning up. After 2 or 3 rounds, we have our Clean Up Song and all the children happily participate in this activity until the play ground is tidy.
We close the preschool aged children's day at noon, in our morning classroom with a small circle that often includes the Letter Sounds Song and a Good Bye Song.
Our focus covers these 5 precepts:
Creative Arts, Art History, Exploration of Selfhood, Authenticity and Transformation, Use of the Imagination, Poetry, Children Literature, Doll Making and Storytelling, Self-Love and Compassion for Everyone.
Peace Practices, Circles, Mindfulness, Forgiveness, Gratitude, Empowerment, Meditation & Prana Yoga, Service, Affirmations, Community, Wholeness, Study of Peace Messengers, Labyrinth walks and lessons.
Foreign Languages (French and Spanish to begin), Belonging, Problem Solving, Anger Management, Non Violent Communication/Peace Practices, Child Lead Rule making, Listening & Leadership Skills, Rights and Responsibilities, Boundaries, Accountability, History, Geography and Sociology taught through exploration of Indigenous and Social Cultures, Celebration of Community, Responsibility to the Natural World, our Earth and to our entire Galaxy.
Basic Phonetic Reading, Writing and Math, Life skills and Entrepreneurial Explorations, Brain Building, Wisdom of the Senses, Self-Determination.
Dance, Movement, Singing, Outdoors Physical Play, Yoga, Drumming, Gardening, Ecology and Science, Cooking, Nutrition, Music Making, Puppets and Drama, Field Trips.
See the curriculum expansion below:
1. EXPLORATION OF SELFHOOD, doll making and story telling, wholeness, affirmations and declarations
2. WISDOM OF THE SENSES, brain building, development of the six senses
3. PEACE PRACTICES, problem solving, communication skills, anger management, forgiveness, listening, agreement making & keeping, and rituals
4. BASICS: Reading, Writing, Math and Rhythm + Computer Skills, Connecting all Sister Schools
5. EARTH SCIENCE, garden ecology, earth pledge, nutrition and health
6. YOGA, meditation, breath as teacher
7. HISTORY & GEOGRAPHY taught through social & indigenous cultures as well as the building of their communal rooms, such as tippis, mud rooms and cob houses...
8. SPIRITUALITY & LEADERSHIP, mindfulness and empowerment
9. SERVICE, community and circle practices, belonging & volunteer work
10. CREATIVE ARTS, Video/Photography/Music making, Dance and Drumming, Foreign Language and Singing
11. ENTREPRENEURIAL connection, life skills explorations and finances
12. OUTDOOR ACTIVITIES, physical play and safety.
Assessment and documentation happen every three months with the participation of the child who keeps an active journal of their sustainable growth and development.
Imagine Wisdom Education (IWE) invites your participation and welcomes your input on all levels.
Attendance at monthly Parent meetings is required to better facilitate your child’s learning and confirm an unbroken circle of education. Our wish is to empower children to utilize their inner skills as we guide and inspire them to realize their authentic selfhood. As children experience the awe in education and embrace learning as giving back, they then mentor others and become curious life-long learners.
Our children will complete apprenticeships in response to what they choose to study and will be able to have their own businesses in place (with parents support), before they ever take their GED. For students wanting to pursue further studies, to insure their entries requirement, this can be achieved within a 6 months remedial course of study.
The specialists that will contribute on part-time basis are highly skilled community members coming to share their passions with the children, finding ways to test comprehension and assess in non-threatening ways.
We are not simply creating a new school. We are creating a new model for other communities to adhere to. At this time, we have 2 sister schools to connect with and share our experiences: Star School on a Navaho Reservation in the 4 corners USA and one in Cannes, France. Additionally we have 2 developping IWE models, one in South Africa and one in Utah. Field trips are for beauty, entrepreneurial setting, art museums exhibits, concerts, plays and will include international travels.
We completed a Summer Program that began on June 13th, 2011 and ended on September 2nd, 2011. You can see more information on this program on our Summer & Progressive Team Page.
3 days per week on location
1 or 2 days per week on field trips with parents’ involvement.
Gender equality – Both Masculine and Feminine Energies are explored and honored.
We find that if little boys choose to dress up with ballerina skirts and little girls playing with cars completely normal, and never frowned upon. Our belief is that if you shame one for doing something they are exited to do, they will mostly stop but somewhere in the future may feel a need to find that again as it was
We encourage each child's choices that brings them more joy and satisfaction to their spirits.
We envision our first year with the children self actualizing with us by building and/or decorating their own Sustainable School with Solar Power, Organic Gardens and a Pacific Dome (Pacificdomes.com) as well as Green Building materials. This way, they will learn to work together and realize their dream environment in a material form, knowing that what ever they envision, they can manifest with the help of their community.
We are looking for a mini-van or mini-bus to transport our students to and from our field trips and for a property with land to begin growing our own food and building the children's dreams school.
Also, we are in the process of becoming a Non-Profit entity. The Summer program will be based in our North Laguna Beach home.
Thank you for your support!
Satyanna Chris Luken can be reached at 949-412-8948 or Satyanna@me.com
HOW TO LEGALLY UN-SCHOOL YOUR CHILDREN
Please check with your local authorities for the specific law in your environment.
This is a link explaining what you must do to legally stop going to
school. Option #1 is recommended by a group in LA that we are heart
storming with monthly.
From one of our advisory member who has successfully unschooled both her daughters during Middle School and High School, the girls are both very successful in their fields today. Her 33 year old daughter is an informational architect in the AP field (graduated with honors in her field of computer science) and the other just turned 30 is the executive director of an East Coast community television station - (never graduated high school - her experience, self-confidence and intuitive wisdom are her tools.)
"Homeschooling is the recognized name as far as the government goes. To comply with California's governmental requirements, I found in my research that the forming of a private school is the best bet.
Once that is accomplished, you can form your own educational system. Unschooling is the specific name for empowering your children and yourself to follow and support the intuition and passion of your children while giving them the balance of safe boundaries as they navigate planet earth. A necessary requirement of unschooling is to want to be the ones who teach and learn from the children, to be with them rather than turning them over to someone who does not have the same value system, to be the child's protectors and the ones who guide them in a loving and responsible manner, teaching by example.In other words, children need clear boundaries, learning about navigating in safety, becoming aware of consequences that come with their actions, based on common sense and consciousness.
As parents do their due diligence and form a private school, they will learn what is required by the state, so that their children's education can take place in a safe learning environment. From my own experience, I have found that once the form is set in place, the parents will have free rein (within the requirements) to run their school as they wish." KT
LINKS TO LISTS OF COLLEGES WITHOUT HIGH SCORE TESTING REQUIREMENTS:
OUR TEACHING MODELS:
Even though many believe that Montessori and Waldorf methods are opposite, we look for the similarities and offer both philosophies to IWE children. After years of teaching and noticing how children were drawn to both, at various times and developmental stages, I am convinced that one method only, is not enough to serve our children well.
The only thing we offer that apparently goes against Waldorf's model of education is early reading/writing skills and calling "work" some of the activities the children do. Children love to imitate their parents, thus going to work is what they want to do, at times. Maria Montessori found a way to deliver reading and writing skills, in a playful and un-stressful manner, thus the reason we offer it, even to our youngest IWE students.
Howard Gardner’s strategies of multiple intelligences
Landmark Education which we recommend to all IWE
teachers, students and parents
Maslow’s hierarchy of growth and development
Multiple Languages Exposure and Practice in Full Immersion Settings
Reggio Emilia's Education