Above all, our students and their families embrace belonging to a diverse and thriving multi-age community. Mountain Sun celebrates difference and strives to create an inclusive and accepting environment in which we appreciate each person’s unique gifts and strengths. In such an atmosphere of compassionate trust, each individual is able to grow and thrive. We believe the school should play an integral role in the development of a child’s communication, collaboration and conflict resolution skills as they serve a variety of communities locally and globally.
In addition to the importance of independent, individual work, Mountain Sun students frequently work together on both daily work and larger projects. Our classrooms enjoy the quiet hum of productive collaboration as students turn to each other for advice or assistance on the work. The multi-age classroom creates many opportunities for collaboration and friendship across the grades, as the older students emerge as mentors and leaders for the younger students learning their way.
In any group, it is natural for conflict to arise, and, in many ways, the productive resolution of this conflict is some of the most important work for children and adolescents. Each of our classrooms has a peace table where children are able to find calm and talk through challenges. Beginning with our youngest students, we teach the language of peaceful conflict resolution utilizing active listening and empathy. As they grow, children expand their natural ability to have healthy, rewarding relationships with other children and adults.
Through active contributions to the school community and service learning projects, Mountain Sun students realize their connections and responsibilities to communities near and far. By tending to their classrooms and each other, our students practice acts of kindness that build a foundation of caring that can extend outward. As they get older, they engage in service projects to understand and help other communities in Brevard and the world at large.