New school takes a creative approach

One station would provide students with a structured lesson, while another would provide them an opportunity to incorporate their knowledge without teacher involvement.

In providing an example, Christensen said at one station there may be words affixed to a wall that students can review, while at another station, students would have a box of magnetic letters. He said in this example the students will most likely begin by using the magnetic letters to play without making a connection to the words on the wall, but after awhile they will begin to make words with the letters.

He said this hands-off approach allows students to work at their own pace while encouraging them to work effectively as a group.

In addition to critical thinking and creative learning, the school will also focus on character education with an all school gathering in the morning to review the some of the positive characteristics the school hopes to reinforce including loyalty, honesty and persistence.

The school's focus is on developing a "thinker," Christensen said.

"A thinker is a person of integrity who is willing to defend his or her beliefs."

Christensen said the school would like to offer needs-based tuition assistance to students who may not otherwise be able to afford the school. He said the board was also considering offering a portion of assistance in exchange for services to the school.

Students who attend Saratoga Academy will wear their choice of navy or burgundy polo shirts and khakis, which Christensen said promotes school unity.

"Uniforms help to bring the school together," he said.

If all goes well with the purchase of a new building, Christensen will have to order quite a few more uniforms.""

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