Learning is naturally joyful here because ISSAC students, while guided in what to learn, are intentionally instructed on how to succeed.
Commit to a goal
Connect with your team
Engage in the process
Organize your supporting community
With the lion as our symbol of strength and courage, our students start each day with the pledge:
"I am an ISSAC lion. I value myself. I respect all life. I talk and listen to the people in my life. I strive to be the best me I can be. I am an ISSAC lion."
This is just one example of the daily commitments our ISSAC lions "roar" proudly.
At ISSAC, you hear students sing "love in any language, fluently spoken here" (Love in Any Language, song by Sandi Patty).
More importantly, you see students practice speaking and acting peacefully and respectfully.
And, while our students may know a lesson simply as "Mandarin Chinese or Spanish" or as a "relaxing activity", it's been designed to develop empathy and to teach tangible skills in negotiating relationships.
For our students, a science lesson on "liquids and solids" is a "dance and freeze" game. A language arts lesson on "verbs and nouns" is a race to a tree.
At ISSAC, you'd find teachers taking off their shoes to tackle a gymnastics obstacle course together with students. You'd find classmates sometimes reading quietly next to one another in Harper Park, and other times exploring online materials at their own pace. You'd also find us moving from class to class and rotating through stations in flexible groups.
Whatever the challenge, our students are engaged because nature, movement, and individual interests and capabilities are all accounted for in each lesson plan.
Here, we not only teach community, we model it.
We encourage a simple school uniform. Our homework policy honors the choices of families to engage at the level of their choosing. We invite the larger community to celebrate with us on occasions such as project launching and culminating events.
We teach our students to build communities because we know none of us succeeds alone.