Respect Myself, Respect Others, Respect Property
The Westgate Way
We teach our students to follow the Westgate Way: Respect Myself, Respect Others, Respect Property.
The Responsive Classroom approach is a way of teaching that emphasizes social, emotional, and academic growth in a strong and safe school community. Developed by classroom teachers, the approach consists of practical strategies for helping students build academic and social-emotional competencies day in and day out.
In order to be successful in and out of school, students need to learn a set of social and emotional competencies—cooperation, assertiveness, responsibility, empathy, and self control—and a set of academic competencies—academic mindset, perseverance, learning strategies, and academic behaviors.
The Responsive Classroom approach is informed by the work of educational theorists and the experiences of exemplary classroom teachers. Six principles guide this approach:
- Teaching social and emotional skills is as important as teaching academic content.
- How we teach is as important as what we teach.
- Great cognitive growth occurs through social interaction.
- What we know and believe about our students—individually, culturally, developmentally—informs our expectations, reactions, and attitudes about those students.
- How we work together as adults to create a safe, joyful, and inclusive school environment is as important as our individual contribution or competence.
- Partnering with families—knowing them and valuing their contributions—is as important as knowing the children we teach.