At SCVi’s Lower School, we focus on the whole child through creative, consistent application of project-based and social-emotional learning principles. Project-based learning is a revolutionary method of instruction that requires our 21st-century learners to collaborate, work well in teams, and solve problems. Students tackle deeply engaging projects about real-world issues that require critical thought, sustained inquiry, and synthesis. Projects culminate in regular Presentations of Learning (POLs) to learners’ peers, facilitators, community members, and parents. Our curriculum also features a strong social-emotional learning component that cultivates confidence, leadership, and self-reflection.

We designed our Lower School program around the expectation that 21st-century learners will become entrepreneurs, leaders, and game-changers. Our rigorous program challenges our learners in open physical environments that are very similar to modern workspaces, and our small campus creates a sense of community that allows creativity to thrive.

We believe unscripted and open-ended play is essential for the development of physical skills, cognitive development, and social-emotional growth. Extensive research demonstrates the importance of play for well-being and development. When children go home after school to play on technology or attend extracurricular classes and organized sports, the process of play and its significant benefits can be lost. Our goal is to provide an environment in which our learners can create, explore, problem-solve, take self-regulated risks, build community, feel accomplishment, support others, and grow to become independent and self-reliant. We want our learners to learn more about themselves and others.

The end result? When our learners graduate, they are not only ready for college, but they are ready to thoughtfully participate in and contribute to our global economy. SCVi’s Lower School learners leave our school Free to Think and Inspired to Lead.