Ramos has big plans for the next phase in her life. She and her husband will not only be going home, Rosa will be opening her own preschool. She will also be helping her sister take care of her mother, and spending time with family.
“My first priority is to help my sister take care of our mother,” she said. “A dream of mine has been to open my own preschool. It looks like I will have the opportunity in Puerto Rico. I already envision a child-centered, hands-on curriculum for three-and-four-year-old children where they will learn English and technology. The main objective of the school is to teach the children to explore and discover their surroundings, a kind of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) program for curious minds.”
Under Rosa’s tutelage, The Island School began Project CHILD, which fits right in with the school’s philosophy of teaching to the child. She watched it begin to bloom in its first year of implementation.
“As with any new program, you need more than a year to clearly see results,” she said. “I saw growth on the students' reflections, mostly with the higher grades. Reflections went from what they learned to how they learned and how the activities helped them learn. I think all the students learned to be more independent.”
So far for the 2012-13 school year, 30 students are signed up to attend. Eight of them are new to the school.
“I believe in small schools,” she said.”Small student population should benefit, not hinder, the child's education. There is more time to teach, reteach, and challenge students’ learning. Ultimately, it is the teacher's academic decisions that make the difference. Teaching and learning with technology offers more educational opportunities; with a small group of students the possibilities are endless!
Rosa said that TIS students taught her there is greatness in small numbers. “The students learned to care for one another as they worked together in projects and during events,” she said. “Their curiosity is an inspiration for my future preschool.”
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