Grandma's House International Preschool, Tokyo

Our Pedigogical Inspirations

We follow a hybrid educational approach, which brings together the best elements of different teaching methodologies in order to maximize children’s learning potential and to ‘scaffold’ their learning. Our indoor and outdoor classrooms are carefully designed according to needs and interests of the children and the skills we want them to develop. It is a flexible and adaptive environment with spaces to explore, to learn, to relax in and have fun. We want our children to be enthused and motivated to explore, discover and create!

The Montessori Method

The Montessori approach is an innovative education model driven by the idea of natural children’s development. While the traditional method is based on following the prearranged education plan, the Montessori philosophy focuses on fostering child’s innate inclination to explore and interact with the world. Children’s natural abilities are unveiled in a specially arranged environment, where kids can choose from a number of developmental activities and unlock their full potential.

From the Montessori Method, we are inspired by these principles:-

-Multi Age Environment (for benefits, see sub/page of this section)

INFANT/TODDLER for children aged birth to three years

-provide a safe, engaging and nurturing environment for the child
-promote trust in themselves and their world
-develop confidence in their emerging abilities
-develop gross motor coordination, fine motor skills, and language skills
-offer opportunities to gain independence in daily tasks

PRIMARY for children aged three to six years

 -foster the growth of functional independence, task persistence and self-regulation
 -promote social development through respectful, clear communication and safe, natural consequences
-provide a large variety of materials for the refinement of sensory perception and the development of literacy and mathematical understanding
-offer opportunities for imaginative exploration leading to confident, creative self-expression

Reggio Emilia Approach

The Reggio Emilia Approach is an innovative and inspiring approach to early childhood education which values the child as strong, capable and resilient; rich with wonder and knowledge. Every child brings with them deep curiosity and potential and this innate curiosity drives their interest to understand their world and their place within it.

From this approach we are inspired by these principles:

-There is a strong focus on social collaboration, working in groups, where each child is an equal participant, having their thoughts and questions valued. The adult is not the giver of knowledge. Children search out the knowledge through their own investigations.

-Communication is a process, a way of discovering things, asking questions, using language as play. Playing with sounds and rhythm and rhyme; delighting in the process of communicating.

-Children are encouraged to use language to investigate and explore, to reflect on their experiences. They are listened to with respect, believing that their questions and observations are an opportunity to learn and search together. It is a process; a continual process. A collaborative process. Rather than the child asking a question and the adult offering the answers, the search is undertaken together.

-The environment is the third teacher

-The space encourages collaboration, communication and exploration. The space respects children as capable by providing them with authentic materials & tools. The space is cared for by the children and the adults.

-Our role as adults is to observe (our) children, listen to their questions and their stories, find what interests them and then provide them with opportunities to explore these interests further.

-The Reggio Emilia Approach takes a child-led project approach. The projects aren’t planned in advanced, they emerge based on the child’s interests.

-A hundred different ways of thinking, of discovering, of learning. Through drawing and sculpting, through dance and movement, through painting and pretend play, through modelling and music, and that each one of these Hundred Languages must be valued and nurtured.

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Waldorf Early Years Education

Our early childhood program is based on the latest research and our understanding of the need to protect the wonder of childhood, including the child’s right to learn through creative play. The curriculum is focused on developmentally appropriate care giving and education with emphasis on the young child’s physical, emotional and mental health. Students learn activities that help foster enthusiastic learning, intellectual growth, self-esteem and social responsibility.

From the Waldorf Education Approach, we are inspired by these principles: 

-Loving interest in and acceptance of each child

-Teachers educate the whole child: head, heart, and hands. They develop children’s aptitudes for thinking, feeling, and acting. This allows children to grow and mature in important ways.

-Meaningful practical work such as cooking, baking, gardening, handwork and domestic activity that provide opportunities to develop unfolding human capacities. Here the emphasis is on the processes of life rather than on learning outcomes.

-There is no one-size-fits all curriculum: curricula are tailored to specific learning needs and interests. 

-Art, music, and imagination are infused throughout the curriculum. This nurtures creativity, curiosity, and a love of learning.

-Children learn about themselves, the environment, and their relationship to the environment.
We list Waldorf private schools on this site, and provide tools for comparing those schools. Moreover, our parent discussion forum allows you to discuss options and get answers to your questions.