Why Willow

Higher Standard
of Learning

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Willow’s brand of experiential learning — joyful, hands-on, and relevant to children’s lives — forms the foundation for every student to realize academic excellence. Visit any classroom, inside or outdoors, and you will see genuine accomplishment because students are constantly encouraged to inquire, think critically, problem-solve, make connections, and effectively communicate with others about their ideas, research, and findings. These are the skills Willow graduates will use throughout their lives.

Virtues Make
Us Better

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Willow’s unique program of virtues is embedded into school life and practiced on a daily basis. From Morning Gathering, when the entire school community comes together to reflect upon what is important to us as a community, to meaningful service projects, our interactions are guided by courageous inquiry, respect, and concern for the wellbeing of others and the world around us.

Our Environment Builds Resiliency

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Willow’s extraordinary environment — 34 wooded acres, fields, a working garden, and green buildings — is the ideal backdrop for healthy, engaged learning. Combine that with our commitment to sustainability and systems thinking, and you have the essential elements for students to become responsible for themselves, their relationships, and the planet. Willow consistently challenges students to take risks in their learning, test sustainable solutions for the environment and society, and to refine their approach based on what did or didn’t work. This fosters responsibility and a resilience that serves our graduates well in high school, college, and life.

Strength of a Small Community

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Willow’s unique size, with a maximum of 16 students per class, means that students are known at Willow not just by their classroom teacher, but by the entire school community. Small class sizes also allow teachers to differentiate or tailor the curriculum to students’ individual needs and strengths. Our class structure is conducive to building collaboration, teamwork, communication skills, and other characteristics that foster intellectual and social-emotional growth.

 

Innovative Programs Unique to Our School

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The Willow School is intentionally designed to educate children the way they learn best. Willow’s teaching methods combine best practices from progressive educational models and philosophies, from Montessori, Waldorf, and Reggio-Emilia approaches to project-based learning, systems thinking, and more, to create a unique, student-centered approach to learning. Willow students learn how to learn and appreciate the trial-and-error approach, arriving at conclusions under the guidance of Willow’s experienced teachers.

The Age 3 to Grade 8 Advantage

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Willow’s structure — Age 3 to Grade 8 — is tailored to your child’s natural intellectual, social, and emotional growth. This structure plays a vital role in shaping Willow students into curious, self-motivated learners who act with integrity and are eager to embrace new opportunities and challenges. Moreover, by Grade 8, students are the leaders of the school community and play an active role in determining what’s next for their education through Willow’s Skills for Tomorrow Program, ensuring a successful transition to high school.

 

 

Read our Testimonials to learn why families in Somerset County, and beyond, choose Willow.

Learn the benefits of outdoor learning and more. Click to Download.

Director of Enrollment Management Lisa VanderVeen is here to help! Contact her at (908) 470-9500, ext. 1100 or via email.

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