Service & Compassion

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Expeditionary Learning Design Principles

These design principles express the philosophy of education and core values of Expeditionary Learning.  Our Franklin School of Innovation CREWS and several classes have been demonstrating Service and Compassion this past week as part of our school-wide focus on sustainability.  Students in Mr. Stahlke’s and Mr. Reynolds’ Crews recently scrubbed the Design-Principle Leopold Benches.  Mr. DeFiore’s Outdoor Education classes, and Mr. Rabin’s Crew, have been hard at work clearing the trail to Hominy Creek, as well as our outdoor classroom space, by identifying and eradicating invasive plants.  While these actions obviously exemplify Service-Learning, the FSI students are consistently thinking about and demonstrating all of these principles:

  1. The Primacy of Self-Discovery  Learning happens best with emotion, challenge, and the requisite support.
  1. The Having of Wonderful Ideas  Teaching in Expeditionary Learning schools fosters curiosity about the world.
  1. The Responsibility for Learning  Learning is both a personal process of discovery and a social activity.
  1. Empathy and Caring  Learning is fostered best in communities where students’ and teachers’ ideas are respected and where there is mutual trust.
  1. Success and Failure  All students need to be successful if they are to build the confidence and capacity to take risks and meet increasingly difficult challenges.
  1. Collaboration and Competition  Individual development and group development are integrated so that the value of friendship, trust, and group action is clear.
  1. Diversity and Inclusion  Both diversity and inclusion increase the richness of ideas, creative power, problem-solving ability, and respect for others.
  1. The Natural World  A direct and respectful relationship with the natural world refreshes the human spirit and teaches the important ideas of recurring cycles and cause and effect.
  1. Solitude and Reflection  Students and teachers need time alone to explore their own thoughts, make their own connections, and create their own ideas.
  1. Service and Compassion  Students and teachers are strengthened by acts of consequential service to others.

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