LEARNING THROUGH PLAY, LLC
We all want to give our kids the world, and we all need support from time to time to keep our families happy and healthy. The Learning Through Play philosophy is built on honoring and developing the many different ways human potential can grow and shine. Key concepts informing our approach are: emotional intelligence, the growth mindset, the “whole child” philosophy of the Montessori method of education, and present parenting.
Emotional intelligence (or “EQ”) revolves around the concepts of emotion recognition and regulation, coping skills, and empathy. Nurturing EQ helps instill perspective, thoughtfulness, and the ability to navigate life’s challenges. A healthy EQ is essential to having successful relationships and a balanced and fulfilling life. Current conventional school models emphasize academic performance as the primary indicator for future success, but more recent studies have shown that EQ is in fact a more accurate predictor of long-term success in all areas of life. Fortunately EQ, unlike IQ, is not fixed and can be improved upon with practice. Learning Through Play seeks to give individuals the best chance at success by focusing on increasing emotional intelligence.
Complementary to developing emotional intelligence is embracing a growth mindset, as opposed to a fixed mindset. Those with a fixed mindset believe that their traits are fixed and cannot be changed. They believe that talent alone leads to success, and effort is not necessary. Studies show, however, that the brain is remarkably flexible and able to gain intelligence throughout our entire lifespan. In contrast, people with a growth mindset view challenges as opportunities to learn and have the confidence to keep trying, despite what others may perceive as failure. People with a growth mindset consciously seek to keep learning and practicing new skills throughout their lives, are often seen as “go-getters,” and tend to be in leadership positions. At Learning Through Play, we emphasize this growth mindset so that the world may be seen as full of possibility, where one can thrive and succeed.
The Montessori Method
The Montessori education philosophy embodies both growth mindset and emotional intelligence in its teaching practices. Similarly to the Montessori environment, Learning Through Play classes are mixed-age and provide hands-on learning experiences that encourage problem solving and socialization. Classes encourage peer-learning opportunities that benefit younger children through observing tasks and social cues, and reinforce confidence in older children by exercising their leadership skills to help guide their younger peers. Learning Through Play emphasizes learning experiences that promote a sense of belonging, independence, and community.
When we become parents, we tend to reflect our problems onto our kids. This can create problems that aren't even there. We get lost in the weeds of parenting and can't find a way forward. Maybe because what our parents did with us didn't work. Or because we don't have the role models or a knowledge base to find a better way. Present parenting aims to keep the past in the past. It encourages us to see each child as an individual, loving them unconditionally and giving them what they need to succeed. At the same time, it honors that parents aren't perfect. We're allowed to have problems without being held to the pain in our past. Feeling proud, successful, and connected to our children can heal the imperfections in our own childhoods. Being present also means being mindful. This can be recognizing your own triggers and the signs that you're losing control, or repairing your connection when it has become impaired by your actions.