Ventana responds to the interests and passions of each classroom. Focusing on the practices and skills necessary for scientific inquiry, students have opportunities to engage in both structured science labs and project-centered investigations. When classroom interests, projects and science inquiry coincide, they combine to create a wider set of ideas and opportunities to explore. Students are allowed space to dive deeply into science topics: extending observations; developing richer explanations, models and concepts; and asking probing questions.
The intention of Art Studio at Ventana is to expose students to a range of art media, processes and techniques as a means of thinking and observing the world more visually. Through deep exploration of materials, both two and three dimensional, students will immerse themselves in ‘languages’ that allow for the contemplation and development of creative thought and a personal aesthetic. Referencing and observing both past and contemporary artists will provide students with a global art perspective and guide the understanding and execution of their own art-making.
At Ventana, we use the Orff-Schulwerk approach to music education, a play-based approach that builds musicianship through a child’s world of games, chant, song, movement, drama and high quality sounding instruments specially designed for children. We recognize the importance of individual creativity and contributions to the music ensemble while keeping in mind that the emphasis is collaborative music making. We continually analyze student understandings and offer provocations that deepen our learning and allow for satisfying experiences in music.
The Physical Education program at Ventana has students moving through three developmental stages: body management and listening skills; fundamental motor skills; and technical and tactical game skills. In the PE class, students are given an appropriate level of challenge and comfort to ensure risk taking; a necessary element for skill growth in game play. This balance is achieved through lessons centered around non-traditional sports and modified traditional games. Physical education students at Ventana become confident in their own abilities and develop an appreciation for all players’ contributions.
The Spanish program at Ventana exposes students to a language class where they learn vocabulary through games, conversation, songs, and children’s literature in Spanish. The program also introduces students to the culture and traditions of Mexico through cooking and crafts. The students’ experiences provide the foundation for language appreciation and cultural understanding.