Democratic Practice

from Participation, Connection, Contribution, Change to CORE COMPONENT


HOT Schools cultivate a school culture in which purposeful activities support choice, participation, connection, contribution, and responsibility, to celebrate the unique voice of each member of the school community. Democratic practice gives children choices in their learning, involving them in authentic problems and projects that increase their self-directed learning. Within the school, each voice matters. By demonstrating to students that they can communicate their learning and their own ideas powerfully through words, images, movements, and sounds, we enhance their sense of social efficacy and civic involvement, strengthening our communities and our country as we educate our children.

Democratic Practice Overview/Roles

HOT Schools Song Lyrics

We are the paintbrush on the canvas
We are the beat and the drum
We are the clay that makes the masterpiece
The rainbow and the sun
A collage in different patterns
We are living history
We are explosions of creation
We are the authors of our story
Words on every page
We are the dance and the dancer
Taking center stage
We are looking for adventure
Footsteps on the moon
We are the song and the singer
Singing our own tune

Higher Order Thinking
Think about things differently
Spells a deeper understanding
Creating our community
We are the pieces and the puzzle
Every part has a home
When we all fit together
The big picture is known

We are the faces from different places
We are connected to the world
We are learning from each other
As the years unfurl

Higher Order Thinking
Think about things differently
Spells a deeper understanding
Creating our community

Put yourself out there
See what you can do
Step into the spotlight
Try something new

We all have a choice, choice, choice
We all have a voice, voice, voice
Every day we have a choice, choice, choice
Everyone a special voice, voice, voice

Proud of who we are
Different yet the same
Share what we learn from
The chances that we take  

Let us hear your voice . . .

HOT Schools Quote

“The HOT School democracy model is what sets HOT Schools apart. Amazing things happen when children are given an opportunity to have a say in how their day is organized! ...The growth in confidence and personal esteem that comes to both students and staff (is evident) when the arts have a legitimate place as core curriculum components.”

Janet Yuse, educational consultant and former HOT school principal