FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
What makes Lexicon School unique?
- Focus on discovering a calling
- Entrepreneurial journey
- 21st Century learning
- Multi-age classes
- Self-paced, mastery-based learning
- Entrepreneurial projects and quests
- Real-world apprenticeships
- Blended learning
- Student driven
- Deep respect for the child
- Student self-governance
- No homework
- Guides rather than teachers
- Socratic discussions rather than lectures
- Portfolios, badges and exhibitions as assessment
- Micro-school format
Is Lexicon a Montessori school?
Whilst we are inspired by Maria Montessori’s teachings, we are not a Montessori school. Key Montessori principles (such as mixed-age classes, freedom within limits, large blocks of uninterrupted work time, learning through “discovery,” and freedom of movement) are updated with cutting edge 21st century learning tools, real-world projects, and the Socratic method, which emphasises asking and answering questions to cultivate critical thinking.
What is a typical day at Lexicon?
The day starts our Launch – a Socratic discussion, predominantly led by students themselves. This highlights the focus of the day, builds energy, raises a community need, or inspires and encourages learners.
The rest of the day is largely broken into two key learning opportunities – Core Skills in the morning and Quests in the afternoon.
Core Skills involves both individualised and small-group collaborative work on reading, writing, and maths using state-of-the-art learning software and hands-on materials. Setting their own daily, weekly and termly goals, students move through the curriculum at their own pace, proving mastery of topics before moving on the next. Reading is encouraged at every opportunity and includes our Drop-Everything-And-Readsessions.
Before lunch, learners engage in art or movement in sessions throughout the week. After lunch, the group gathers again to reflect on and prepare for their afternoon work on Quests.
Quests are real-world adventures that make learning fun and challenging. Often known as project-based learning, each Quest lasts between 4 to 6 weeks and challenges learners to solve important real-world problems.
Each is designed to cover cross-curricular subjects. For example, the Bridge Building Quest sees learners challenged to construct bridges that are structurally sound (Physics) but also fit within the budget allocated for the project (Maths) as well as understand both environmental and social impacts (Geography and History.
Each Quest culminates in a public exhibition, where the Lexicon community, parents and guests are invited to review student’s work.
Why does Lexicon have an all-day programme?
We created the all-day programs to offer children who need all-day care a consistent and comfortable home-away-from-home environment. Families may drop off their children anytime between 8 and 8:30am and pick them up anytime between 3 and 6pm.
What do you mean by an entrepreneurial journey?
We believe that the entrepreneurial journey is a powerful metaphor for children to think about their educational adventure.
Lexicon students aim to cultivate an entrepreneurial mindset; they look for opportunities in the world, take risks, learn from mistakes, think creatively, work hard and find joy. Lexicon students understand that each journey has twists and turns that requires hard work, grit and determination to overcome challenges.
Students are encouraged to ask themselves, “Who am I and where am I going?” “What makes me special and what gifts do I have?” “How can I use these gifts to do something great, even change the world?” It’s a way of discovering their unique gifts, talents and passions and developing the habits of mind, character, and behaviour that allows them to realise their goals with energy, rigour and joy.
What does it mean for children to be in charge of their own learning?
At Lexicon, we cultivate self-directed learners. A self-directed learner is empowered by his or her interests, is able to set and achieve learning goals, research questions, solve problems, participate in discussions, and strive for mastery.
How will my child stay on task in a self-directed environment?
A student’s ability to set and track goals in order to evaluate progress is essential to success in a student-driven, individualised learning program. We do not expect all students to be self-directed from Day One. This level of freedom and responsibility takes focus and practice – and most of all, to be to be able to set themselves specific, measurable goals that are challenging but realistic.
At Lexicon, our Guides closely monitor weekly and daily goals in weekly one-to-one sessions. Perhaps more significantly, pupils are also held accountable by their peers – an assigned running partner who regularly checks in on progress.
How does Lexicon track progress without assessment?
Lexicon tracks student progress with Journey Tracker, a software program that allows parents to monitor pupil progress.
We also use student portfolios, award topic badges as they progress through the curriculum, learning exhibitions, peer reviews and goal monitoring. Pupils will also take standardised tests at the beginning and end of the year, to be able to compare to national standards and understand value added.
What is the Socratic method and why does Lexicon use it?
In the Socratic method, our Guide sets up scenarios and asks pertinent questions to stimulate critical thinking and independent learning.
In place of lectures, through discussion and debate, the Socratic method is a strong platform for students to hone critical thinking and speaking abilities. Guides also employ the Socratic method with students throughout the day to equip independent learners with the ability to answer their own questions.
How much homework will there be?
There will not be any homework assigned, as we believe that children need time to play, relax and be with family and friends.
Does Lexicon serve special needs children?
We are not trained or staffed to serve children who need specialised attention, though we welcome children who learn though non-traditional methods. We treat each and every situation individually, so if you are interested in Lexicon and believe it is a great fit for your family, please inquire and we will personally assess your situation and the best fit of your child.
When will Lexicon open?
Launch date is TBC.
What ages does Lexicon serve?
We are starting our first intake with 7-10 year olds (Yrs 3-6). We will eventually serve pupils from Reception to A-levels.
Studios are mixed-age, based on our understanding of the positive effects of peer learning and that that children learn best when working alongside children younger and older than themselves.
Is Lexicon a franchise?
Lexicon is an independent affiliate of the Acton Academy network of schools.
Acton’s global affiliates share the same mission, set of beliefs and promises to families, with individual affiliates adapting Acton’s model for the communities they serve.
The Acton network supports affiliates with curriculum materials, learning tools, custom software, best practices and more. Each year, affiliates from around the world gather in the main campus in Austin, Texas, to share knowledge, collaborate and help the network grow.
Find out more about Acton Academy here.
What can my family do now to experience Lexicon?
We run events and programs throughout the year, all of which reflect Lexicon’s mission and core values.
We invite children to start a business, make something they’re passionate about, sell to real customers, and decide what to do with the profits. Along the way, they learn about what it takes to be an entrepreneur – and more importantly, they learn something about themselves.
Learn more here.
Join the CBF Business Bootcamp, our fantastic summer camp for young entrepreneurs.
Build a business in two weeks before launching at July’s Guildford Children’s Business Fair. Along the way, get stuck into our outstanding programme of sports, activities and trips and meet amazing new friends from all over the world.
Set in the beautiful surroundings of Barrow Hills School, Witley, the programme will run in July 2020.
Can’t make it to the camp but are launch your business at the Children’s Business Fair? Join our Weekend Workshop for entrepreneurs looking to brush up their business and sales skills (date TBC).
Parent Learning Academy
A series of workshops designed specifically for parents who want to understand how to inspire and motivate their children in their learning.
Using a taught curriculum developed by academics and teachers, trained in learning-to-learn methodologies, parents will acquire the knowledge of how to bridge the gap between school and child and, critically, how to speak with their children about learning.
These sessions will be help throughout the year.
To find out more, get in touch.
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and tell you about our school.