WyldFlower Learning Community is a unique and personalized educational environment that places a strong emphasis on self-directed learning. This approach to education is implemented throughout the school, from kindergarten all the way up to 12th grade.
Today, we are going to focus on our high school program known as Pathways.
At WyldFlower, every student is recognized as an individual with unique interests, goals, and aspirations. The Pathways program is designed to help students explore and pursue these interests in a way that is meaningful and relevant to them. With three different Pathways to choose from, students can tailor their education to fit their specific needs and goals.
WyldFlower Learning Community is a non-traditional private school serving students K-12th grade located in Sheridan Wyoming. We have a foundation of self-governance and self-directed learning. WyldFlower values creative thinkers and curious go-getters. At WyldFlower, we also deeply value democracy and civic participation. By creating a space in which democracy lives, wonder grows unhindered, and independence blossoms- children’s natural response is to thrive, reach, and grow.
Humans are wired to develop knowledge, skills, and intelligence. They consistently find unique ways of being and doing. Immersed in opportunities and challenges of the real world, scaled-down, children naturally develop into informed, active adults committed to making their community, and the world, a better place to live.
Human beings are by nature curious creatures, and this curiosity, this puzzlement, is inherent in us. We use this curiosity to discover the world around us in a way that gives us a deeper understanding of it.
There is no need for an external authority to impose this drive to know. Instead, it originates within the individual, propelling them forward in their learning.
This is where the history of self-directed learning begins for the purposes of this post.
Hello again! Thank you for joining us for our next conversation about SDL (Self-Directed Learning) and our experience with it here at WyldFlower Learning Community.
Today we are going to talk about 5 MORE myths about SDL.
Myth: “Self-directedness is all-or-nothing. It might be right for some kids, but not for all.”
Myth: “Self-direction implies learning in isolation.” (aka…makes socially awkward people. Eh hem, looking at you- home school stereotype)
Myth: “Self-directed students miss the basics of math, reading, and writing.”
Myth: “All of this talk about “learning through play” really just feeds into the myth that all of life should be fun and easy, as well as into the sense of entitlement that pervades the youth culture of today.”
Myth: “There is no doubt that motivation improves learning, but if motivation were all it took, everyone would have six-pack abs. Some things are just challenging, including math and science beyond a certain point, and some external motivation is required by most people.”
& how does it look at WyldFlower Learning Community?
When people ask me about WyldFlower Learning Community, it is impossible to explain how we do what we do, and why we do what we do without first explaining what Self-Directed learning is.
It’s also important to clarify what it isn’t. In this post, I will share the definition and examples of Self-Directed learning in action. In a future post, I will discuss what Self-Directed learning is NOT.
Kids can be excited to go to school! That is a promise I freely make because I know it to be true for us. These kids get MAD when we have snow days…seriously- they threaten to walk to school…in the snow, uphill, both ways! No joke.
How is this possible? Let me share the definition of Self-Directed learning with you and give some examples that spark joy in their hearts and minds, leading them to love their time at school!
How is it going, how did it go, how was year one???
These questions come at me from everywhere. Friends, family, random strangers (who somehow know where I work) in the grocery store isles… It is a question I struggle to answer in the polite allotment of time given in a conversation that is really meant to be two sided. I could answer that question for about 45 minutes straight.
Case and point. I was chatting with a friend on the phone yesterday that I hadn’t spoken to in a bit- sure enough. “So, tell me all about it. How did it go this year?” I fumbled through the answer of “So. Good!” adding a few little tidbits to drive home the point before returning the volley and asking about his year in academia. Him being a school administrator on the West Coast (the best coast 😉 ) meant his experience during a global crisis would be much different than mine here in Wyoming. (I have never loved our cowboy spirit more! Side note.)
What if I told you I had the answer? What if I could promise you a research-defended, pediatrician-prescribed, biologically founded, ironclad way to ensure not only whole-child health but also this laundry list of benefits to your child? Your pride and joy. Bone of your bone, flesh of your flesh. What if one method could give your progeny
Cognitive Benefits: (diverse and plentiful but too long to include in a bullet list)