A Message from the Director

At Summerhill we see children as strong, capable, and resilient—rich with wonder and knowledge.

When you walk through the doors at our school, your traditional views of education will be challenged. Our walls are vibrant, our environments are engaging, our children are … happy.

Our children come to Summerhill to explore learning at their own pace, their own interests as well as focus on their own challenges and development. We acknowledge that children learn when they are engaged, when their curiosity is piqued and they want to learn more. After all, our favourite phrase is ‘Why?’. But learning through inquiry allows more in depth lines of questioning, such as ‘How come?”, “I wonder what happens if…” all these lines of inquiry are crucial for helping children develop critical thinking skills and to continue evolving as lifelong learners.

Curriculums are all about boxes, fitting into the square, however, here at Summerhill, we acknowledge that children are not that shape, we work hard to make the curriculum fit around the children. So whether children are interested in dinosaurs, plants, vehicles or make believe, all of the expected developmental milestones can all still be achieved using children as agents in their own learning. As you walk around our school, you will notice our children experimenting. We believe in allowing our children to explore all areas of learning, through trial and error, after all, what is learning without knowing failure. Play is the vehicle we used to explore concepts and skills which is in line with up to date research on Early Childhood Development.

As Albert Einstein was so famously quoted: “Play is the highest form of research”.

Our teachers hail from all over the world, with experience in a range of curriculums and educational philosophy. Underpinning how we view children is the Reggio Emilia approach to learning. We see children, not as empty vessels to be filled with knowledge, but rather, already containing their own knowledge, constructs and understanding of the world around them. As educators, we are on the learning journey with our children. We are not the authority on all things, we will often not give answers for the questions our children ask, especially if we see that it is an important part of their learning. This encourages children to explore their own thinking and making their own conclusions, but also, this is a very important life skill that children are required to have to be critical thinkers in our world today and in the future.

At Summerhill we see children as strong, capable, and resilient—rich with wonder and knowledge. Every child brings with them deep curiosity and potential and this innate curiosity drives their interest to understand their world and their place within it. The emotional, social, and physical development of young children has a direct effect on their overall development and on the adult they will become. That is why understanding the need to invest in very young children is so important, so as to maximize their future well-being.

As a fully accredited Primary Years Programme (PYP) Early Years Learning Centre, our educators receive official International Baccalaureate (IB) training that encourages critical thinking, self-reflection and dedication to lifelong learning and continuous improvement in our educators. Not only do we deliver high-quality educational programs from the IB, we do it as a small, welcoming community kindergarten that embraces our cultural differences and similarities. The education that we provide at Summerhill challenges the boring ‘chalk and talk’ approach to learning. Ours is vibrant, engaging, challenging and takes into consideration individual goals and needs. We are ‘outside of the box’ kind of people, and we are looking for the same. If you are looking for the kind of education you wished you had when you were at school, the kind of education that allows you to see your child grow from strength to strength and be the best they possibly can be, join us for a tour, be inspired, get excited for education again.

Yours Sincerely,

Anita Sutton
School Director