We have an exciting announcement to make - A new and continuously improving Otter Learning with the same amazing team! At Otter Learning, as many of you know, our approach is guided by our mission, vision, and values:
Mission: Be Safe, Be Kind - Let's Grow Together.
Vision: Our vision is to be the leader in providing community-focused early childhood education for children from all backgrounds. We will be known for our exceptional education programs, talented teams, and community relationships. We will always take pride in our unique blend of fun and learning in a safe and nurturing environment.
Growth & Innovation - We will continue in our efforts to promote education, constantly improve our services, and nurture top talent to provide a unique and exciting environment for everyone in the Otter Learning family.
Partnership - We believe in working together as a team and community.
Quality - We will offer an environment that fosters development, facilitates success, and encourages integrity.
Inclusion – All children, families, and team members are welcome.
Safety – We will deliver a safe setting for our students, team, and community.
Our Mission, Vision and Values (“MVV”) guide every aspect of interactions with our communities, our amazing team members, and our schools. In line with our MVV, we have made the exciting decision to build upon and revamp our Otter Learning messaging, branding, school design, logo and move towards a more intentional effort to demonstrate what is best for children across all of our schools. This does not mean that schools will have to change their name or adjust right away. Because of our partnership and inclusion, we will work with each school to understand what they want and need. The goal of all of this is to better reflect who we are and who we strive to be as a company, as educators, and as community ambassadors. Our new logo still features our lovely otter, whom we will now call “Otto,” symbolizing the importance of family, community, and environmental stewardship. Our new brand colors and imagery used in the logo reflect our commitment to nature and diversity.
As for the school design, we plan to work to better incorporate natural elements such as plants, natural light, and outdoor spaces to create an environment that is both stimulating, calming, and welcoming for our communities. Our classrooms will be designed to be flexible and adaptable, allowing for a variety of teaching and learning styles. We will also work to incorporate sustainable materials and design practices to align with our new school philosophies.
Over time, we plan to use five school-specific tenets in addition to our MVV that will better guide our vision of being a leader of community-focused early childhood education for children from all backgrounds. These five core tenets include: Foundations, River Keepers, Diversity, Trusted Holt, and Natural Discovery.
At Otter Learning, we believe that a strong foundation is essential for children to develop the skills and confidence they need to succeed in life. Our holistic approach focuses on developing emotional intelligence, problem-solving skills, and a love of learning. Our professional educators use recognized developmental milestones to guide children's growth and provide the support they need to reach their full potential. We work closely with parents to ensure that each child's unique needs and abilities are being met.
We are committed to teaching students and families the principles of respecting and restoring their environment. This means leaving our communities better than we found them and ensuring families are active partners in an amazing education experience. Our community of River Keepers will gather for events and carry forward stewardship of the neighborhoods where we work, serve, teach, and play. We integrate environmental education into our curriculum, teaching children the importance of preserving natural resources and leaving a positive impact on the world.
Our community is as varied as the stones in a riverbed. Our commitment to inclusion nurtures strengths and celebrates diversity, while unifying our community of learners through an exceptional educational experience and common goals. The river connects and shapes us while we each celebrate our individuality as contributing members of the river community. We strive to create an inclusive environment where all children feel valued and respected.
At Otter Learning, we are a trusted partner for parents, providing a nurturing and secure environment for children to learn and grow. We emphasize the importance of self-discovery, allowing children to explore and learn at their own pace. A holt is a home that Otters build for their young amidst the turbulence of a river. Our schools serve as a safe haven for our children and community to develop independence, make mistakes, and enjoy the freedom of learning.
We believe that connecting children with nature is essential for their well-being and development, and we prioritize outdoor learning experiences whenever possible. Nature reminds all of us that we are part of a larger, more expansive world. Our intentional school design and natural environments help students develop adaptability and resourcefulness in the traditional classroom and our outdoor natural environments. We plant, grow, and harvest to become successful life-long learners and leaders.
In summary, Otter Learning was founded with the intention of always seeking out the best possible learning experiences for children. This drive for improvement has been fueled by observations and information gathered from the local communities, educators, and team members. In addition to these valuable resources, we have more recently drawn inspiration from the Danish concept of hygge for early education, which emphasizes creating cozy and comfortable environments that promote feelings of well-being and contentment. This concept has been integrated into the company's approach to designing both indoor and outdoor learning environments. By incorporating these ideas and practices, Otter Learning continues to strive towards providing the most positive and nurturing learning experiences possible for children.