Seven Principles of Service define the First Steps Academy experience. Each aspect of our philosophy contributes in some way to satisfying of our mission of preparing young children for success in life.
Model Distinguished Character
Do the Right Thing
We seek to impact the lives of children, so they may take a stand for what is right and true. To help our students learn about thankfulness, service, kindness and respect, we model these values. As someone once said, “Anything worth doing, is worth doing right.”
Building confidence is a precursor to building great character; having great character is a precursor to finding success in life. Confident children will try new experiences and risk accepting harder challenges. We continually challenge children, so they may experience the joy of success.
Failing Is OK, Failing to Do Your Best Is Not
Mistakes will happen. We create environments that inspire children to explore and experiment without fear of failure. We expect children to apply sincere effort. Failures represent opportunities to learn and return to the next steps in the learning journey. Perseverance builds character.
Respect the Roles of the Family
Honor Mom and Dad
We desire to support and strengthen the bond between parent and child. We will partner with you to reinforce your philosophies and approaches as much as possible. We will also adapt positive discipline approaches, rewards and incentives at your request. We will fulfill our duty to your family by providing counsel and presenting options.
Children understand and learn better through consistency. While we expect our teachers to interact with children in ways that establish consistent expectations and routines in the classroom. We help you extend continuity of those routines at home as well.
Your family unit is of paramount importance in your child’s life. Your involvement in your child’s learning experience is welcome whether you volunteer in the classroom, on field trips, or in other ways.
Support the Dreams of Children
This stage of your child’s life should be full of wonder and discovery. We want your child to have fun while learning and cultivating meaningful relationships. We know we are achieving our goal when parents tell us, “my child just comes home happy.”
Leverage Natural Curiosity
Children learn best when they are engaged and active. Our teachers will support the interests of your child.
Every Child Can Contribute
We believe that we share the responsibility of making the world better. Every child can contribute, using their unique talents, and positively impact the life of another person. We help them discover the joy of making a difference.
Respect the Capabilities of Children
Children should try to tackle challenges by themselves first to develop their problem-solving skills.
Children who make choices for themselves now gain practice for the future. We guide children in making responsible choices.
Provide Feedback, Earn Answers
Our teachers provide valuable feedback and guidance to help children make progress toward tackling their problems.
Educate the Whole Child
Nurture the Heart
We design activities to nurture your child’s heart, both physically and emotionally. Gross motor skills and healthy habits develop through free play and instruction. Our teachers help your child acquire the communication skills necessary for building positive relationships.
Ask Questions, Maximize Dialogue
Discussions rather than lectures, engage your child’s mind and extend vocabulary growth. We encourage your child to ask questions to help understand our complex world.
Repetition is Necessary
Children develop problem solving and critical thinking skills best through repetition and practice.
Create Loving, Organized and Exploratory Environments
Engage All Five Senses
We help your child activate all five senses to experience the wonderful world around us.
Environments and Equipment Should Encourage Self Discovery
Our rooms are designed to inspire your child’s natural instinct to explore. Learning aids, toys and equipment are placed within reach to optimize discovery and creative play.
Provide Enough Structure
Structure provides comfort and security for children; additionally, they learn about boundaries and respect. In contrast to the Montessori Method where children spend most of their day engaged in self-directed development, we seek to engage students and guide their learning.
Engage Children as Individuals
While “learning for learning’s sake” resonates with many children, others need to understand the greater purpose before they find their motivation.
Accommodate All Learning Styles
People learn in many ways. We build lessons around the learning styles of the children in each classroom.
Nurturing Self Identity
We recognize the uniqueness of each child and help them become aware of their own talents and challenges. We celebrate each child as an individual and help them appreciate their differences and similarities.