Educational Therapy
At The Spire School, we subscribe to an Educational Therapy approach that strives to work with students holistically. Adolescents are impacted by a variety of internal and external influences that shape their attitudes, beliefs, behaviors and feelings. As such, Educational Therapy is a practice that serves to demystify cognitive and emotional issues. It enhances students’ awareness of their strengths, while helping them understand how to use these strengths to help overcome or compensate for areas of weakness. Spire’s utilization of a community of allies enhances Educational Therapy. This collaborative approach permits coordination of services through regular communication and cooperation among teachers, counselors, psychologists/psychiatrists and families to best attend to students’ learning needs and socio-emotional development.

Emotional difficulties can compromise a child’s ability and enthusiasm for learning. The goals of Educational Therapy can include restoring self-confidence, improving the learning process, developing learning strategies, and helping the student feel comfortable in his or her learning environment.

Strengths Based Instruction
Strengths-Based Instruction is a teaching philosophy that utilizes the strengths and talents of each student to enhance their sense of empowerment and increase confidence in the classroom and beyond. This practice encourages students to admit lack of knowledge as a means to move beyond feelings of inadequacy. In its place, we foster a proactive approach to learning. At The Spire School, we promote healthy risk-taking and the exploration of novel areas to diversify students’ interest and knowledge. We address students’ unique attitudes, behaviors, and ways of thinking to assist their development toward becoming responsible and motivated individuals who are capable of setting and achieving goals. Furthermore, we use academic role modeling to expose developing students to attitudes, beliefs, routines, and lifestyle factors that promote an appreciation for life-long learning and a strong work ethic.

At The Spire School, our Strengths-Based Instruction implements brain-based learning strategies (“cognitive strategy instruction”), which complement the structure and function of our brains, while taking advantage of our capacity for growth and flexibility of thinking and behaving. Like any muscle in the body, the brain can be “exercised” to become more flexible and efficient. As such, our learning interventions encourage development and efficiency of brain function through educational environments that offer immersion, relaxed alertness, and active processing. The objective of this instructional approach is to enable students to become more strategic, self-reliant, flexible, and productive in their learning endeavors. To this end, we teach strategies and provide practice in implementing those strategies. Through strengths-based instruction, brain-based learning strategies, and a focus on developing and refining metacognitive abilities, Spire students are provided with important academic and life skills to assist in their journeys towards successful independent learning and effective socio-emotional functioning.