Vail Daily Bizwatch: Mountain Journey School
Vail, CO Colorado
Location: Eagle Ranch
Date opened: Oct. 110.
Owner: Sarah Givens.
Contact info: email@example.com or 970-401-2124
What goods or services do you provide? Mountain Journey School provides an in-home preschool for children ages 3 months through age 5. We provide an enriching, stimulating, age-appropriate environment for children to create, explore and learn.
What’s new or exciting at your place? We are exploring different ideas for long-term projects right now. One thing that seems to be of interest is castles. We are reading about them and learning about how we might create one using various mediums. We are also collecting recycled materials to use in our castle project and other creations.
What strategy do you use to differentiate your business from your competition? We are a Reggio inspired school. The Reggio Emilia Approach to Early Learning is based on:
• Child-centered learning
• Creativity through open ended learning materials and aesthetics of the classroom
• Collaboration with peers, parents and teachers
• Using the environment as a teacher
• Documentation of children’s work daily through journaling and documenting long term investigation with pictures and video
• Working in partnership with parents to do what is best for their child
What philosophy do you follow in dealing with your customers? What can your customers expect from you? I believe in treating children and families with the upmost respect. Parents need to know exactly what goes on in their child’s day so I document their day through the use of journey books where I write about their day. I take pictures and add them to their journal from time to time, or post pictures on our blog or text parents a picture of their child during the day.
Tell us a little about your background, education and experience: I have always loved working with children ever since I was young. During my summers in college, I came out west to Colorado, Utah, Washington and Alaska leading teen wilderness trips. This provided me an opportunity to teach about the outdoors and some environmental education of the area where we were. Then I moved to the valley, after college, to work with Walking Mountains (formerly Gore Range Science School) for a year-long internship. I fell in love with the area and wanted to stay so I continued my teaching journey at Learning Tree and ABC School and then at the Children’s Garden of Learning. I left for a year to get my Master’s in Education and my Early Childhood Education Teaching License. During that year, I student taught at a Reggio inspired school in Boulder. When I returned, I started teaching at Brush Creek Elementary, where I have taught for the last seven years. I taught second grade and science to all the grades, K-5, in collaboration with Walking Mountains. I enjoy being with children of all ages and now I am living my dream of having my own school.