Responsive Classroom


In 2001 the Deer Isle Stonington Elementary School adopted a social curriculum called The Responsive Classroom.  It is based on the premise that teaching and practicing social skills is as important as teaching and practicing academic skills and that the two go hand in hand.


The Responsive Classroom is an integrated curriculum; a method of teaching that encourages communication, assertiveness, responsibility, empathy and self-control in children while teaching the academic curriculum.  The components of this curriculum include morning meeting, designed to build a classroom community; rules and logical consequences including modeling, practicing and role-playing conflict resolution; classroom organization which provides the appropriate environment and materials our children need; academic choice and guided discovery to foster cooperative learning and independent inquiry; assessment and reporting to parents to keep communication open and provide information about continuous progress.


The outcomes we are striving for are a balance of teacher-directed instruction and child-initiated learning.  We want our children to take responsibility for their work and their environment.  We want to see caring behavior and ensure that our children acquire problem-solving ability in both social and academic settings.  We encourage parent involvement.





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