WHO WE ARE
Thank you for your interest in our wholesome model and community!
Wholesome Generation is a non-profit educational institute + teaching campus designed to co-create better ways to connect youth to nature, to healthy food, and live a healthier lifestyle-all while restoring our natural systems, public health and celebrating to blend whole communities.
Our 5-Acre school, community model and outreach program serve youth from pre-K through Grade 5 (year-round) with weekend offerings and summer camps, and workshops for the general public.
Our community spaces include a bee apiary, organic gardens, a mobile culinary classroom, and a large natural creek bed used for outdoor education, in collaboration with UT Austin, Austin Community College, and Texas State University. We are focused on Land Preservation and growing children’s interest in developing solutions to preserving our natural Environments, and especially Water Resources.
Projects to launch this late fall are a Community Kitchen and Lunch Catering Service (50% of income will support our reduced or free lunch program and culinary education classes), Aquaponics System + Rainwater Harvesting Stations (both will support our Teaching Institute and Watershed Protection for our Creek Bed), Green Solar Energy and Zero Waste Program.
Our program is designed to discover and support youth’s interests, while we prepare them academically through rich project-based experiential learning, and work with community partners to empower our next humanitarian leaders. We extend mindful opportunities for families and entire communities.
Learning happens in interactive sessions, working in the kitchen, in our garden, or by the creek, where we explore and instill knowledge through hand’s on experiments and lessons. Studies include french + spanish language, art + theatre lessons, yoga + meditation, physical activity, culinary + nutrition education, Feldenkrais and environmental education.
We are committed to supporting the whole health of each child through organic [local, whenever possible] healthy plant-based meals and snacks, nature-immersion, physical activity, social-emotional learning, and a holistic environment. Community partners are welcome to expand their research on our campus, and help us create a broader audience for what we do!
Wholesome Generation’s community is very diverse and we focus heavily on community involvement to help us understand the socio-cultural backgrounds of our students’ lives while assisting us to build bridges between the home and learning environment. This exposure helps challenge our own perspectives and biases, and allows us to truly embrace our differences.
We welcome people of any gender identity or expression, race, ethnicity, size, nationality, sexual orientation, ability level, neurotype, religion, elder status, family structure, culture, subculture, political opinion, identity, and self-identification.
Our Community is why we do this work, and we are here to support. To extend enriching opportunities to every child, we offer families to participate via CCMS (Workforce Solution), offer reduced tuition to families in need, or volunteer assignments as trade for their child’s education and meals.
ABOUT REGGIO EMILIA
The Reggio Emilia philosophy emerged from a town in Northern Italy called Reggio Emilia, shortly after World War II. Due to the destruction from the war, parents believed they needed a new approach to teaching their children. Today, the Reggio Emilia is recognized for having some of the best schools in the world.
The approach is based on the following principles:
The curriculum is based on the interests of the children. Study topics are developed from the talk of children, family and community events, as well as known interests of children (such as puddles, shadows, dinosaurs etc.). Our teachers work together as a team to talk about the direction of a project, the materials needed, and possible parent or community involvement.
Projects allow for more in-depth studies of concepts and ideas that come from the class. Project work is treated like an adventure and could last anywhere from one week to the full school year. Teachers guide the students in making decisions about the direction of the project, and the ways in which the topic will be researched and presented. Long-term projects enrich the children’s learning and are meant to be thought-provoking as children explore, build and test theories, and record their results.
Multiple Symbolic Languages
The arts are used as a symbolic language in which children can express their understandings in their project work. The graphic arts are used as tools for cognitive, linguistic, and social development. Presenting concepts and hypotheses in multiple forms as such print, art, construction, drama, music, puppetry and shadow play, are essential to the children’s understanding of their experience.
Group work is essential in advancing cognitive development. Children are encouraged to dialogue, critique, compare, negotiate, hypothesize, and problem solve through group work. Collaboration among home, school, and the community to support the learning of the child is highly emphasized.
Teachers as Researchers
The role of the teacher is first and foremost to be a learner alongside the children. The teacher is a researcher, a resource, and a guide as she shares her expertise with the children. In this “teacher-researcher” role, educators carefully listen, observe, and document the children’s work, provoking and stimulating thinking. The teachers also reflect on their own teaching and learning, and work in pairs, sharing information, and mentoring each other.
Documenting and displaying children’s work is necessary so that children can express, revisit, and construct and reconstruct their feelings, ideas, and understandings. Documenting children’s work in progress is an important tool in the learning process for children, teachers, and parents. The teachers act as recorders for the children, helping them trace and revisit their words and actions and making the learning visible.
The Reggio-Inspired approach is grounded in a strong image of the child. We view each child as powerful, unique and capable. We value their thoughts, interests, imagination and enthusiasm. The role of the teacher is to co-navigate the learning journey while provoking ideas, problem-solving, encouraging dialogue and sharing educational experiences alongside the children. We embrace the connection between home and school, and the community.
We firmly believe that our child-centered philosophy, outstanding teachers, community initiatives and unparalleled level of communication will provide you and your child with the best possible education and experience.
Our website is designed to provide an overview of our innovative, project-based curriculum as well as our welcoming, state-of-the-art learning environment. More importantly, we invite you to schedule a tour of our campus, meet our excellent team of educators, and witness our wonderful model “in action.”
Learn About Wholesome Generation’s Progressive Approach:
Learn About Wholesome Generation’s Core Curriculum: