Posted in Collaborative Learning, Educational Reform

Can Younger and Older Students Work Well Together?

This is how Brightworks, an extraordinary private school in San Francisco, answers this question in their FAQ:

“Yes. We find that segregating children by age can pathologize normal, developmental differences and deprive children of the opportunity to bond with, teach, and learn from each other. Our low student-teacher ratio (6:1) allows parallel learning across our age groups, even within the same physical space. Our most developmentally-mature students are able to tackle projects that challenge and engage them, while the younger children work in a more play-based manner.”

This school demonstrates the principle that children need to be grown, not manufactured, into adults. Ā Remember, the literal meaning of “kindergarten” is “garden of children”!


Dane Dormio is an online tutor and academic coach who specializes in helping all types of students achieve life and academic success, especially homeschooled students and those preparing for STEM careers. More information and resources can be found on his website at

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