Students at the Truly Free School are responsible for setting meaningful, long-term goals for themselves, as well as setting a daily schedule and planning activities in order to achieve those goals. For older students, this type of work is challenging and valuable, but younger students have a much more difficult time conceptualizing and articulating meaningful, long-term goals, and taking the necessary daily steps in order to reach them. In light of this, we created the Primary Program for students age 4-8, where they get the necessary training and practice in goal-attainment and following a schedule in a mentor-structured environment. Students in the Primary Program pursue immersive learning in the following key areas:
- Language – listening, speaking, reading, writing
- Art – observation, discussion, creation, experimentation
- Music – listening, performance, reading, composition
- Math – quantification, calculation, representation, patterning
- Bible – doctrine, history, memorization, application
- Practical – cooking, organization, hygiene, construction, gardening
- Physical – endurance, strength, flexibility, agility
- Games – logic, strategy, collaboration, communication
- History – politics, geography, economics, culture
- Science – observation, hypothesis, experimentation, data analysis
These areas of study are not independent, but are intertwined with each other. Throughout the day, the mentors lead the students in following a macro-level schedule, within which the students can choose from a number of related activities. Over the course of days and weeks, the students grow in their foundational knowledge and skills, preparing them to transition into a position of taking personal responsibility for their particular educational goals.
4-year-olds joining us in the Primary Program must use the Flexible Scheduling option, and can transition to a full 5-day week when they turn 5!