Dear Families and Friends of the Columbus Learning Cooperative,
Much is happening at the CLC this month! Our community is growing and we are seeking an Enrollment Coordinator to help faciliate that process. Know a a parent who might be a good fit? Send us their info and we'll reach out! We'll also be beginning our 8 week evening course in Compassionate Communication for parents and educators next Wednesday, with space for those who'd still like to join us. Summer camps are nearing as well, and we're looking forward to sharing the experiences of cooking, gardening and more with our community. We're reaching the end of our 3rd quarter at the Columbus Learning Coop, and it seems a good time to reflect on this journey. For this month's newsletter, we've asked for one of our member's parents to share her family's story, and she did so with grace:
"To understand our family's love of CLC I should first give a little background on our son's history with traditional schooling.
Our son completed fourth grade at a public school with an emphasis in the arts in the spring of 2016. While we were initially excited he was able to lottery into this particular program as a kindergartener, we had noticed as the years progressed that he was becoming more withdrawn, his self-confidence, creativity and curiosity steadily diminishing and he showed little interest in what was being taught. What he seemed to be learning was through his peers, some of it shocking and disturbing for a ten year old. He would often come home and unleash all the anger and frustration he bottled up during the school day and it was becoming more and more difficult to reconnect with him. His inner life was becoming a mystery to us.
Having read about alternative to schools and more holistic learning models over the years it was clear this public program was no longer working for him or us (his parents) and we decided to try our hand at homeschooling/unschooling this past fall. We heard about CLC through a friend and decided to check out the winter open house. Once our son found his way to the lego room he was hooked. We opted to try one day a week at first. Within the first month our son was asking about attending more days and now he attends 3 days out of the week. I often tell friends, he likes me drop him off early and pick him up late. I've caught him multiple times jumping out of bed in the morning exclaiming; "Yes! I have CLC today!".
All of the growth I have seen in him in the few short months of attending CLC have all been things that would never be tested on a standardized test. But it is the kind of growth that matters the most to me as his mother. He is no longer the sullen preadolescent of a year ago. He now interacts with adults with greater ease and is much more open to trying new things and making new friends. He opens up and talks to us non-stop about his interests. His creativity and humor have sparks once more.
To put it simply, he's a happy kid again.
While I believe our son's thriving is due to multiple factors, CLC is clearly on the top of that factor list. I think the intimate size of the class and the mentor/teacher's deep respect for each of the students sets it apart from most central Ohio programs for middle and high schoolers. In this deeply humane, holistic environment our son has found he is valued just for who he is and has been able to foster true student mentor relationships with the amazing staff at CLC. We hope that both our son and CLC continue to grow and flourish in the coming years."
Yours in Learning,
Kate Weigel, Multimedia Director
(on behalf of)
Devin Fraze, Founder and Director
Marcelle Gilkerson, Mentor
Ulises Cruz, Teacher
Tommy Jones, Teacher
William Dunlap, Teacher
Cary Harris, Teacher
"Spoon feeding in the long run teaches us nothing but the shape of the spoon."
-E. M. Forster