Teaching PhilosophyWillow Creek is committed to:
- Developing students who are self-motivated, and socially responsible lifelong learners.
- Partnering with staff, students, parents and community to create a unique, challenging learning environment with high academic standards and expectations.
- Applying academic learning to meaningful real-life activities and situations.
- Providing opportunities in science, technology, environmental education and arts programs that foster independent, critical, collaborative and creative thinking.
- Respecting diversity and whole child development – cognitive, emotional, social and physical.
Expectations of Students
- Academic Excellence: Students are expected to demonstrate progressive mastery of academic subject matter. To this end, students are active learners, demonstrating ability to read and analyze material in a variety of disciplines; communicate articulately, effectively and persuasively when speaking and writing; and apply mathematical knowledge and skills to analyze and solve problems and demonstrate scientific literacy.
- Life-long Independent Learning Skills: Students are encouraged to develop critical thinking and problem solving skills to become lifelong learners.
- Personal Worth and Leadership: The entire Willow Creek program encourages the development of compassionate, literate students who are prepared to take their place in an ever-changing world. Throughout the time a child is at Willow Creek, the child is supported in their quest to become a self reliant, independent individual who is able to make decisions based on critical analysis of information and put those thoughtful decisions into action. It is also expected that Willow Creek graduates have learned to work effectively in large and small groups as well as independently on behalf of themselves, their families and the larger world.
Expectations of Parents, Guardians and the School Community
- Family Involvement:
In accordance with California Education Code section 49011, Willow Creek Academy encourages—but does not require—families to participate in school activities. Specifically, we encourage each family to:
1. Be an active partner in their child’s education by volunteering in the classroom or office, driving on field trips, helping with lunch, fundraising, etc.
2. Support student learning by:
· Reading with their child 20 minutes each day
· Assisting their child with homework
· Attending parent meetings
· Encouraging their child to follow school rulesWhen families contribute their time and expertise, we meet the highest standards of education and ensure the goals of WCA and its charter are consistently met.
- Community Responsibility: Willow Creek students participate in the larger Bay Area community, taking advantage of the opportunity to learn from local institutions (The Bay Model, Marine Mammal Center, the Academy of Sciences) and individuals (poets, writers, musicians and artists). As a result of the interaction with the community beyond the school campus, students are expected to create service learning projects which enhance both their learning and their contribution to the larger community.
Willow Creek Academy provides a rigorous, inquiry driven, project oriented learning environment that encourages differentiation of instruction as much as possible. The core curriculum emphasizes educational experiences that prepare students to meet or exceed state curriculum standards. The school community is divided into two families: Lower School (grades K-5) and Upper School (grades 6-8). Willow Creek Academy students are taught to identify what needs to be known, assisted in locating needed information and skills and then taught how to take action or make decisions beneficial to themselves and society. The Willow Creek community is organized and designed to encourage students to be active participants in their own education, resulting in well-educated, thoughtful and responsible community citizens.