Progressive Approach to Education

Using a Quaker framework, teachers work interactively with children, differentiating instruction based on age, interest, and ability. Peer-teaching and mixed-age groupings allow students to find their inner strengths. The classroom curricula reflects our commitment to support students in developing a solid base of skills and knowledge, as well as maintaining their creative spirit through discovery and experimentation. We recognize and value different learning styles of children, teaching styles of faculty, and life experiences of all members of the UFS community. Teachers actively participate in the development and revision of each curriculum area in correspondence with state and national standards.

Mixed Age Groupings

Children learn not only from their teachers but also from one another. The concept of multi-aged, multi-grade classes is certainly not new; however, UFS has redefined the notion, taking many factors into account when determining the composition of a class in any given year. This arrangement allows for some students to remain with the same teacher for two years as a positive educational experience, and sets up natural peer learning opportunities within the classroom due to the mix of ages, abilities, and maturity levels.

Design Thinking

Design Thinking has become commonplace in many educational institutions for a classroom activity when time permits. At UFS, Design Thinking is a project-based approach to solving problems where students gain knowledge and skills by working for an extended period of time, sometimes spending weeks investigating complex questions or systems. When faced with a particular problem, students develop a custom solution by working to understand the problem, make hypotheses, and develop ideas. Students are encouraged to ask engaging questions, conduct Interviews, collect information, and work side by side with experts in their fields on specific studies.

Academic Objectives:

  • To nurture the Inner Light in each child by fostering a community in which the spiritual aspect of daily activities is an integral part of the curriculum.
  • To foster self-worth and respect for others.
  • To provide students with models for non-violent conflict resolution.
  • To provide students with a well-rounded experience in a loving atmosphere.
  • To foster exploration, self-discipline, creativity, and a desire to learn.
  • To offer active learning experiences that will develop the child’s abilities and interests at their own pace and in consideration of their strengths and challenges.
  • To help each child develop an awareness and concern for the needs of others, a sense of community, and a spirit of sharing.
  • To collaborate with parents and caregivers in guiding the development of their child.
  • To utilize, maintain and evaluate our curricula on an ongoing basis.

Supplemental Learning Support

Based on the availability of resources from the Intermediate Unit and Catapult Learning, educational testing is available for speech and language services and remedial reading and math. These services are intended to provide supplemental support to students in regular education programs.