Fundamentals of our centers

Preschool

At Semente we believe that spaces are one more tool to educate and that is why we take account of our premises.

One of our principles is the interaction with nature, so we look for places with backyards so that our children can be outdoors every day.

We bet on a model of decision making in which we participate in life in class in a horizontal way. That is why we give importance to the assembly space and we structure the class without anyone having a specific place, not even the educator.

The centers are flexible spaces that change according to the needs of specific children or the group helping them to find an inclusive Semente.

We look for places that have natural light in all their rooms, promoting the group’s well-being.

Semente is a feminist and secular space. Before incorporating any material to our class, it has to pass a sieve with this critical vision.
Our intervention as an educational team on site and in the environment is important.

 We try to avoid visual overloading the rooms, also we incorporate natural materials and use tools or furniture that foster autonomy.
Preschool Semente is thought for children from 2 to 6 years.

Semente Compostela has two centers aimed at children from 2-6 years of age (Torreira and Salvadas) and a primary education center in Cancelas. The Moas Project will make possible to join the three centers in one and thus improve in many aspects.

Primary

Semente is also a space of transformative pedagogy at the service of community interests. For Semente, the learning process implies an acquisition of skills relevant to personal development and a social transformation:

– Acquisition of knowledge,
– Acquisition of key habits and values that foster long-term autonomous learning, beyond the school and academic years.
– Acquisition of abilities that boost the implementation of the acquired knowledge in real contexts, such as cooperative work, project design and implementation, autonomous learning, and self-assessment.
– Acquisition of emotional consciousness that allows the individual to deal efficiently with emotions, promoting coherence between what is «thought», «what is felt» and «what is done».
– From the constructivist perspective, the student is the key figure of the teaching and learning process. The student is responsible for her/his own learning, with the instructor as mentor and guide.
Semente is a community school that responds to a variety of social needs. It tries to educate children with critical and free thinking and aims to make society a less individualistic and more communitarian place.

It is designed for children from 6 to 12 years, organized by corners (recantos) and the work is done on a project basis the students acquire the knowledge that corresponds to their educational level from suggested proposals through the corners. They work with real manipulative materials that are directly related to the reality around them. All these works are developed in teams, and each student performs the suggested work individually or collectively.

"The cooperative work in the projects is basic to answer the questions that the students themselves want to know."

The students decide what they want to research and the object of their research. They search for information about resources in their homes, libraries, or other places and then they answer their curiosities and interests or, if they cannot answer, they know for what reason. All this process will serve to clarify what we need to improve for future research and what each person can do to make this way of working run. The subjects to be investigated are current questions our students are concerned of; it can be the machismo, the birds that surround us or the solar system

The assemblies, that are part of our methodology, are a good time to show feelings and emotions, as well as to reflect on together and make decisions. When we have to work constantly with others, conflicts always arise, and we want to take advantage of them to work on the emotional part. We want to insist on people’s feelings in those moments and not to focus on the act itself. To do this, we pay attention to how they all feel and how the situation that caused the discomfort can be repaired. This can be done by taking care of what each person needs, especially when one of them is damaged. They should realize what happened and reflect on their own feelings and those of others. In addition, the emotional aspect is worked daily through a variety of dynamics: cooperative games, art and emotions and body expression. Besides the projects and corners, there are other moments that are used to work art, plastic, music or physical education. We often rely on human resources from our community, where there are artists who come to work at school. The school spaces are modified and adapted according to our needs to carry out the artistic proposals. The outings to concerts, theater or exhibitions sound common in our school. The use of flexible space and time allows a variety of learning experiences. We also go out to the forests and natural areas nearby often. It changes the daily routine and allows us to take advantage of the environment and to enjoy time at school in a different way. All this helps the children to be aware of their actions in the natural context, to have the tools to reduce the ecological footprint and to learn more about the environment.