About Capella House

Our values, philosophy & history
  • At Capella House we value

    • Relationships: Engaging in meaningful, nurturing, communicative, and respectful relationships which bring a greater sense of community - because life is about how we communicate with each other.
    • Individuality: Nurturing the spark of individuality by respecting and affirming each individual and building a knowledge of self and self-esteem.
    • Curiosity: Encouraging creative, relevant, hands-on, imaginative learning that inspires growth.
    • Accountability: Empowering children, staff and parents to be responsible for their actions.
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  • Our philosophy

    At Capella House we hold the space for the Heart in Education. We believe that we are human beings together, regardless of age, position or status, and that our primary need as human beings is for connection. When we all feel secure within a community, authentic and meaningful learning can begin via the children’s interest. The “Image of the Child” lies at the Heart of our emergent curriculum approach and sees all children as competent, capable and curious and creative.

    Experiential, relevant and interest-led education that emerges from everyday life

    Equally important to self-discovery is having the opportunity to study things that are meaningful and relevant to one’s life and interests. Developing a curriculum around student interests fosters intrinsic motivation and stimulates the passion to learn. Given the opportunity for input, children generate ideas and set goals that make for much richer activities. When children have some ownership in the curriculum, they are motivated to work hard and master the skills necessary to reach their goals. Capella House achieves via our emergent curriculum where children choose themes and generate their own inquiry facilitated by their teachers. 

     Click here for more information about our emergent curriculum approach.

    Affirming individuality within a community

    Capella House supports children to develop a deep knowledge, love and respect for themselves, others, and their environment. This occurs through personal development (meaning a better understanding of oneself), an open sharing of ideas and a wise approach to discipline. When there is an opportunity for the voice of each child to be heard, an environment evolves where children feel free to express themselves. Class agreements and conflict management skills are some of the ways in which we encourage such dialogue. We believe children have greater respect for their teachers, their peers, and the lessons presented when they feel safe and sure of what is expected of them. In setting fair and consistent agreements initially and stating the importance of every activity, children are shown respect for their presence and their time. In turn they learn to respect themselves, others, and their environment.

    Continuous professional and personal development of teachers

    When the teacher’s role is to guide the child through the learning process, help foster a lifelong love for learning and help each child respect him or herself and others, the teachers need a specific set of skills, knowledge and personal insights to empower them to be more effective educators. Our teachers are provided with professional and personal development courses covering topics like communication skills, conflict resolution and relationship skills on an ongoing basis, helping them to grow personally and professionally and facilitate a unique learning experience.

    Teachers, children and parents engage and learn together, forging meaningful relationships

    We recognize that parents are the child’s first teachers. Children learn best when parents are involved in their educational program. The primary bridge between home and school is the involvement of family and community. We encourage parents to take accountability and responsibility with us for their child’s education. Our parenting education programs, including skills on ‘Nurturing Self Esteem’, ‘Emotionally Intelligent Parenting’, and ‘How to Talk so Your Kids Will Listen and Listen so Your Kids Will Talk’, support our parents in gaining the skills they need to deal with every-day parenting challenges. Our 30 minutes social integration each morning, where parents are encouraged to spend time with their children at school, is just one of the many ways in which we encourage parent participation in their child’s education.

    Multi-age classes, mirroring everyday life

    With Capella House’s multi-age approach, younger children benefit from collaboration with older children and older children benefit from their modeling role. Children participating in multi-age classes are supported by their peers in an atmosphere that accommodates different developmental stages.

  • So often, during social integration I’ve watched fathers playing catch, mothers reading stories or parents doing creative work with their children and marvelled at how precious it is to share a space where we play with our children together. Because there have been times when privy to a moment of intimacy between parent and child while playing, I’ve left social integration with a renewed sense of the beautiful privilege that parenthood affords. And, some days this has been just the medicine I needed to find my way out of parenting frustrations back into connection with my children.

    And, how absolutely phenomenal that Capella values the quality of relationships to the extent that it offers courses where parents can come together united by their desire to grow. And, in this community of parents I’ve been inspired, supported and touched by those who’ve shared vulnerably and with great intimacy of their challenges and joys.

    Capella – for all the growing pains you are yet to face and all the hurdles you may have to navigate, hold on tight to what sets you apart for it is incredibly special.

    With many thanks for our wonderful journey together.

    — Françoise, Myrah (pre 2), Gabriel and Jerri