From the first day of preschool through 8th grade graduation, the HVWS faculty is dedicated to maximizing each student’s capacity to become his or her best self. In order to accommodate all different learning styles, the teachers incorporate a wide variety of activities into their lessons. Movement, recitation, painting and drawing, crafts, sculpting, games, singing, playing instruments—all help to supplement and complement the academic aspects of the curriculum, so there is usually at least one area in which each student can excel. It may happen, however, that a student experiences difficulties: physical, academic, cognitive, behavioral, or emotional. When a student is struggling, the teachers may call on the Educational Support Group (ESG) for extra assistance in helping the student work through issues standing in the way of progress.
HVWS offers several different therapies, each of which addresses a different area of the child’s experience, with the common goal of supporting the educational process – the child’s ability to learn successfully – by strengthening the foundations of thinking, feeling and willing, on which higher learning capacities are based. The areas addressed include physical coordination and balance, healthy neurological development, self-confidence, physical and emotional health, and cognitive and academic skills. The therapies we offer are:
Language Arts Support
When Language Arts instruction may be indicated: When a teacher notices that a child is having difficulty recognizing shapes of letters or numbers, matching sounds to letters or letters to sounds, sounding out words, reading fluently or comprehending what s/he has read, spelling or expressing him/herself in writing, the teacher may ask an ESG member to observe the student and, if warranted and if the parents agree, to offer language arts instruction. The earlier in the child’s development such issues can be addressed, the better. At our school language arts instruction is usually offered to children ages 8 and up.
The Extra Lesson & Early Movement Integration Therapy
When Therapeutic Singing may be indicated:
When a teacher notices that a child has difficulty listening and/or hearing, matching pitches for singing, following a rhythm, or playing the flute or recorder; or when a teacher identifies a child who has social or emotional challenges (e.g. being “out of tune” with classmates), respiratory issues, or an inability to concentrate – the teacher may ask an ESG member to observe the student and, if warranted and if the parents agree, to offer Therapeutic Singing. The earlier in the child’s development such issues can be addressed, the better. These exercises facilitate any additional direct instruction offered to the child by teachers and therapists.Therapeutic Singing is usually offered to children ages 6 and up.
The Educational Support Group maintains a Resource List of other therapists. There is a modest fee for each ESG service, billed through TADS. Students receive services prioritized according to the teachers’ and ESG’s estimates of relative need. Additional services from ESG specialists and other approved specialists and tutors are available at parents’ expense. For further information on any aspect of the HVWS Educational Support program, please contact Educational Support Coordinator Melissa Merkling at 203-364-1113 or via email.
An anthroposophically trained, licensed naturopathic physician and registered nurse, Dr. Tamara Potselueva contributes her consulting services to the Educational Support Group. She is available to see patients privately. Appointments can be made by calling 860-664-3651 or by email.