61871 Twentynine Palms Highway, Joshua Tree, California 92252 • Send us an e-mail
"Joshua Tree is the home to many artists and musicians, from all corners of the world. So what happens when a bunch of artists find that they have small children who are approaching school age? They invent a school. Or, to be more specific, they create a home-school co-operative, where the arts, music, environmental and outdoor education are provided alongside reading, writing and arithmetic. They find a location, preferably with a stage and an area for organic gardening, paint the walls with non-toxic paint - and share in the responsibility of educating their children. And then they hire a couple of teachers who are versed in ecology and botany; who draw their curriculum from a combination of their honorable predecessors in experimental education, such as Waldorf, Montessorri and Summerhill; who do yoga, recite morning verses, hold meetings in the round, and generally have a respectful rapport with the children."
"I was just reading how education systems create insecurity and competition by putting same-aged children together in groups, but when communities allow children to gather organically in different-aged groups, it engenders collaboration, kindness, tending acts (older kids taking care of younger ones without having to be asked), emulating acts (younger kids looking up to and emulating older kids), and overall responsibility and happiness....so BRAVO, living school, BRAVO."
Ecosystems Analyst, Writer
"Lola is eager to go to school every day, and has a love of learning. I attribute that to the creative and loving environment that Anna & Laura have developed and nurtured. I am thrilled to have Lola attend the Livingschool !"
"The Livingschool is a place where students get individualized attention. In two years attending, my daughter has lost none of her vitality and confidence in being herself (as my wife and I feared might occur in a standardized school environment), but she's gained immensely in academic and social skills. The Livingschool is a place where learning is playing, with arts and plants, music and imagination. We feel very lucky to be a part of it."
"This school has been a dream come true for our family. My child started out as shy and scared to engage and now she has something to say about everything and is confident. She asks every morning if its a school day and shouts "horrah!" when it is."
Since coming to the Living School, our 10 year old daughter is enjoying class like never before. Our child is bright and imaginative but has not always flourished in the regular school system with its large classes, and she has often been anxious at the end of the weekend about the coming school week. Now she is rearing to go come Monday morning.
At the Living School the two teachers maintain a uniquely relaxed and yet animated environment in which the pupils’ curiosity and unique abilities are allowed to flourish, and the low teacher pupil ratio means that each child has the opportunity for one on one interaction with the teachers each day. In such a setting, pupils are learning the skills of self-motivation and independence, while developing confidence in their own abilities in an environment that is both stimulating and nurturing.
We are finding with our child that there is the chance of some self-directed learning as well as following the curriculum and it seems to us that with the excellent blending of these two approaches the kids at the school are developing what will become a life long habit and love of learning.
A happy child will learn well and the kids at this school are in an atmosphere where the teachers seem as inspired to delve into subjects as the pupils are themselves. There is a lovely atmosphere of shared learning and the excitement of inquiry into the full range of subjects, with supplementary workshops such as “people and plants” which increased our daughter’s sense of connectedness with the world around her while deepening her sense of wonder.
Maryrose and Brian
"My child is given the freedom to explore his creativity in a setting that makes learning fun. He is writing stories and illustrating them in his notebook. He is constantly teaching me things he's learned about plants and animals, doing math equations and generally incorporating what he learns in school into the rest of his time. Often, he doesn't want to leave school at the end of the day. I like being involved in a school where all of the parents take an active role, along with the teachers, in helping to raise conscious, caring, unique human beings."
"We LOVE the Livingschool! One look at the new lesson block, "Geography and Culture" and I am reminded again on how wonderful this educational opportunity is for our child. If this syllabus was a college course option for me, I would I have enrolled in a second! We are very pleased with our decision to move to the high desert from Los Angeles and comfortable with this very unique school. Anna and Laura are doing a great job and we are proud to be a part of The Livingschool."