Our program exists at the intersection of playful and intellectually-rigorous learning with our unique approach to education. We combine literacy with creative expression driven by children's shared interests as part of a group. Children will have the chance to listen to engaging stories and then begin to create their own stories both as individuals and in groups. Our program will support our emerging authors as we build their vocabulary and language skills in order for them to tell deeper and more complex stories, all from their own imagination and ingenuity.
The direction and nature of the projects are a collaborative process with the teachers and the children. A curriculum emerges and starts to take shape as our teacher-researchers actively document and analyze the thoughts and explorations taking place in the classroom. As we progress through projects we will thoughtfully support the learning by teaching certain skills and introducing concepts. This way students learn to use new skills and ideas in meaningful ways.
This emergent curriculum does not just happen by chance. Our teacher-researchers carefully plan and design the learning experiences with intention, paying close attention to the possibilities of where children might go with their ideas. Not every planned possibility may come to fruition, but this flexibility in how we plan allows us to learn alongside the children and keep the learning close to where the children are. We are reflective teachers responding to emerging interests and ideas in the classroom.
Environment as the third teacher
The environment is an important aspect of a learning experience, something that is often ignored in many classrooms and schools. From the inside out Tinkerseeds is a special place, designed to suit our program's needs. In a densely-populated city, we are fortunate to have found a space to build our program on a quiet street in the Dazhi suburb of Zhongshan District in Taipei.
A private outdoor deck welcomes visitors when they first arrive at our front gate. Once inside, the attachment to nature isn’t cut off. All of our classrooms have large windows allowing plenty of sunlight to pour in and allow views of the plant life that surrounds the property. We completely renovated and re-built the interior space from scratch and designed our learning spaces with the intention of supporting our unique approach to education. Our prepared environment promotes collaboration, creativity, and helps develop a sense of community as the classroom changes as we work through group projects. The layout supports group work as well as independence.
Tinkerseeds is well stocked with varied art supplies, open-ended educational tools, and a growing collection of recycled and found items. This evolving list of materials supports the open-ended, creative nature of the work we're doing with students. Materials are placed at student's height in an orderly setting. This order helps children find what they need by themselves in order to keep working without needless interruption for teacher guidance. It also teaches a sense of responsibility to care for their classroom and the materials in order to do the work that engages them.
Reggio Emilia Inspired
Inspired by the municipal schools of Reggio Emilia in Italy, Tinkerseeds Children's Workshop is the culmination of the work we've done with children over the years. We follow social constructivist philosophy and are also heavily influenced by the work of Lev Vygotsky and John Dewey. Our founders and teachers are passionate educators, dedicated to innovating and raising the standard for high quality English-immersion education through our work.
We offer programs for two distinct groups of students: 3-6 year olds and 6-8 year olds. Both programs are experiential learning experiences driven by playful inquiry with rich literacy and art projects. Find out more about our programs.