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Enki
 

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

What is Enki Education?
About the Enki Education Director...
Why are you called Enki?
What is so special about an Enki Education?
When and how did this approach begin?
What can I expect of the teachers in an Enki Program?
How early do you begin teaching a foreign language?
What is the tuition?
How do graduates of the Enki program fare?
What are teachers and parents saying about the Enki Program?

 

Teachers working with Enki 6th grade graduates tell us:
 
"I can tell you that it has been great having them (the Enki graduates).  Their cooperation as a group, overall general attitude and positive outlook toward learning have been fantastic.  What stands out most strongly is their openness to and love of learning - that is quite uncommon for children at this age.  They also function as a positive and supportive peer group.  They were a strong enough community to carry the five new children into this positive mood.  They maintained their sense of group and yet expanded it to include the new ones. "
- Middle school teacher and director
 
"It is truly difficult to write about the class only as individuals.  This group is so tightly bonded that they function as a group.  They all seem to be friends; on a daily basis they flow to sit with different friends who could be male or female.  They do not seem to exclude anyone, even me.  I feel so comfortable with them and they are so dependable.  I am thrilled by the opportunity to teach them.  It is a special experience for a teacher."
- Middle School Language Arts and Humanities Teacher


School Parents tell us:
 

"The Enki school approach always honored who our son is and engaged him with a rich substance of academic studies, art, music, drama, body/mind exercises, and peer interactions. Study and focus, discipline and respect, humor, and play were all interwoven.

He is now in the eighth grade. His reading is off the charts and he cannot seem to get enough of it. His library card is well worn. His math teacher has advanced him to do ninth grade work. In science class, he is one of the leading students. He is interested and abreast with affairs of the world. During out of school time, he is self motivated with his assignments, study, and practice. I believe much of this well being has firm roots in the sensitive and intelligent Enki educational approach. He is making much of his life in a kind and creative manner. That is this parent's delight. Happily, our seven year old daughter is now a first grader going through the Enki program, and it, again, is going very well."

- Parent of a graduate who had spent 6 years in the program,
and a current first grader
 

"When the school began I had many concerns. Perhaps it was natural to be slightly paranoid when enrolling my child in a start-up, experimental school. But now, looking back, I am once again appreciating her elementary schooling. Most of the original grade 1-2 group moved together to grade 7. Many teachers there have commented on their inquisitiveness, freshness of mind, creativity, and sincerity. Over the last number of years I have looked into other schools and, with all this school's struggles as a new school, I conclude that it is the only school in our vicinity that holds meaning, connection, and basic harmony as primary values. These values were successfully realized in Sophia's class, and for that I am ever grateful."

"Now that they have gone on, my daughter and some of her classmates have been disappointed by some of the things they've found in other schools--such as the cynicism in the school culture. I have been disappointed by what I would summarize to be a general lack of depth, cohesion, and sense of ‘meaning’ in the curriculum. There is also a ‘more-is-better’ emphasis in other schools, rather than the focused learning found in the Enki program."

- Parent of a graduate who had spent 6 years in the program,
and a current second grader
 

A great part of what makes the education unique is our focus on the teacher's growth as well as the children's. In teachers' own words:

"One of the questions I had at the end of the Enki summer intensive was, ‘How do you fit everything into one school year?’ I didn't understand how it could be possible until I got home and realized how much I had learned in just three weeks. Through the challenges and the laughter, the course was an amazing experience for me. It has given me tools to work with my own obstacles and ones that I come across in my work with children. I have come home totally inspired and excited. I thank the faculty for being so dedicated to children and the future of this planet. I can't imagine this knowledge being excluded from any other education program."

 - Teacher Training Program participant, 2000
 
"This program is a place to explore and discover new worlds. A lot of the emphasis is on the inherent intelligence or brightness of all, and finding where this lies in ourselves. And teachers explore all the disciplines themselves through direct experience - art, music, storytelling, drama, meditation, and rigorous intellectual study. Everyone does everything! Each person has their strengths and their challenges so there is an opening up that happens as we go through the process together. There is a sense of opening up to the world and uncovering our own wisdom and richness. It's that sense of wonder and delight we want to bring to the children - we get a good base for that in the Teacher Training Program!"
- Teacher Training Program participant, 1994
 

Homeschooling Parents tell us:
 

I have chosen Enki for educating my children and myself. For the education of my children, Enki offers a curriculum/philosophy that respects their developmental stages and works to integrate them on an Artistic, Holistic, and Spiritual level. Additionally, Enki offers a worldview illustrating that all cultures and traditions have their own wealth and value. The image of a circle is presented; which puts knowledge, wealth, and value in the center and all of the different cultures on the circumference; so, that the center is equally accessible to all. Concerning my education, this is the only curriculum/philosophy that I have encountered that considers my personal journey to be at the heart of my children's education. Enki suggests that as my children watch my progress (or regress) on my journey that they learn how to deal with life based on these observations. Enki supports my journey in many ways including offering a non-liner approach; which is wonderful for me personally since I naturally lean towards non-liner thinking. Additionally, Enki constantly reminds me throughout the manual that my commitment to my own development is as important as my commitment to my children's development. For my closing, I'll leave you with the self-stated goal of Enki with which I wholeheartedly agree; "To connect with our birthright i.e. to be touched by the energies inherent in life. Then we experience the vibrancy or magic within the ordinary (this is the seat of connection, compassion, and ecological/social responsibility)." Enki Manual p.7


 

I would say that for the money, I think there are an *incredible* amount of resources that are included, (and I've only seen the K version and Teacher's Guide, about to order G1) from the stories, to crafts, circle verses and songs. To find resources like this on my own, I would have to spend a *lot* of time in the local library, in my own library or on the internet to find anywhere near what I have in one place with Enki. And even if I had the time (which I don't), I still wouldn't find some of what is in there. Of course, that's also probably why it's a bit overwhelming when you receive that gigantic binder in the mail!


 

The Enki Teacher's Guide states early and often that the foundation of all the philosophy and theory is teacher centering. That is, a teacher must be at-home in herself, grounded in spirit, for deep learning to occur (by either student or teacher). And, certainly it is mandatory for classroom management.

I had read these pages, heard these ideas, even agreed wholeheartedly with them when I first received my Teacher's Guide and curriculum materials. I even remembered how well my children behaved, how receptive they were to new ideas, how balanced our household rhythms seemed during those times when I spent the most hours in meditation and yoga practice.

But, between reading those early pages and beginning to use the curriculum for my children about three weeks later, we sold our house, packed up our lives and moved out of state. As I began making plans for homeschool lessons and circle time, I was sure the kids would just love our new routines. I focused on the stories we'd read and the circle activities. I was so excited about the neurological integration activities I knew everyone would enjoy. I completely immersed myself in the underlying theories behind the lessons.

Imagine my surprise when my children, who had begged for months for more "real lessons", balked at these new plans. They resisted, and whined, and bickered. They cried; I cried. I actually heard myself say that I'd paid all this money for this curriculum, you're going to do these lessons.

At that point, I had to admit I'd messed up somewhere. Frantically, I began flipping through the materials, hoping for some clue on what had gone wrong. And, there it was, big and bold and black and white, teacher centering. I wasn't centered. I wasn't grounded. I wasn't even unpacked.

So I backed off, way off, for a while, reclaimed some time and space for myself. Reconnected with life and found my center. Before I knew it, lessons were happening, stories heard, and games played almost without planning.

In the two months since we've moved, we haven't slowed down. Three out-of-state family trips (one for almost two weeks), a birthday, a wedding, and a major holiday have all occurred after the move. But through it, I've tried to keep my center. And my children are asking again for more. More lessons, more stories!


 

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children, and anyone interested in exploring childhood. 

   
 
 
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 Enki Education, Inc.
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