Our family has attended classes at the Stone Hill Learning Center for the last 13 years. Many may ask, “If I am homeschooling, what is the purpose of sending my child to a school?” While enrolled in classes, my children have been taught history, science and writing. They have been taught to not to interrupt when someone else is speaking and to do their assignments on time. But that is not all my children have learned. They have learned about friendship and forgiveness and encouragement. They have learned about kindness and patience, and they have learned that helping others can have great rewards. That is why you send your children, Stone Hill Learning Center is more than just a school.
Jennifer Rohmeyer, Parent
We've had a fabulous experience at Westerly Learning Center. My son took World History (mainly European), Shakespeare, two different writing courses, and Studio Art.
The teachers were all superb: Vanessa Fiori, who taught history, Shakespeare and writing, Denise Troxel who also taught writing, and Kyle Stevenson, who taught art. All of the teachers not only know their subject matter backwards and forwards, but are excellent with middle school age boys. The learning environment is active, participatory and multi-sensory. Plus, the approach is conceptual, which works well with very bright children who hunger for ideas. We were hugely pleased.
Peter & Carol Piccinini, Parent
The Westerly Learning Center truly partnered with us in educating our daughters through the eighth and sixth grade respectively. The staff of dedicated, hardworking, wise teachers served as guides and friends. They faithfully planned thoughtful lessons and creative, appropriate, and sometimes stretching assignments. We appreciate the way the Learning Center teachers clearly articulated the Code of Conduct and then enforced it impartially, while consistently treating their students with respect. They showed an interest in our daughters’ lives that made them know their teachers truly cared about them. Dr. Ristuccia and Mrs. LeGall remain among our girls’ favorite and most outstanding teachers to this day.
The Westerly Learning Center gave our daughters the opportunity to become proficient in a foreign language, which we could not have done at home. Furthermore, the teachers provided needed accountability for mastering certain academic skills, such as excellence in writing, without as many wearying battles as we would have faced at home. The Learning Center also wisely provided many more opportunities for the girls to practice public speaking than they have since experienced in public school.
As we have encountered the social dynamics in the public schools, we feel especially thankful for the group of friends the Learning Center helped our children develop. Both our girls really appreciate the chance they had to have friends who were growing up with the same or similar values. Thanks to the Westerly Learning Center’s partnership, both our daughters have been among the top students in their schools and were well-prepared to handle challenging academic courses.
Reverend Clay and Anne Porr
Westerly Learning Center was a great extension to our family’s homeschooling. Excellent teachers and a variety of classes and activities aided our sons’ learning processes. They each found it easier and more fun learning the subject matter with their peers. As parents, it freed us up a bit, and gave us peace of mind, knowing that our children were under very capable and knowledgeable teachers, especially in the higher level subjects.
One son, now a college senior, wrote, “The Learning Center was an effective compliment to my early learning and development as a student. The knowledge and communication skills of the teachers created an excellent learning environment for subjects that I wouldn’t have been able to teach myself as a homeschooler. Even today, I have a competitive advantage over anyone in class and work because of the superior writing skills that I learned from Westerly Learning Center classes.”
Bob & Grace Henrie
Westerly Learning Center was the place we chose to enhance our children’s experiences in science and art. It was a blessing to have classes with other homeschooled students whom we might also see in activities for homeschoolers outside of the Center, such as field trips and other programs. This fostered a sense of belonging to a true community.
The academics were in a more traditional-type setting, providing a familiarity which would be helpful in future environments. It also encouraged organizational skills and structure by caring homeschool friendly-people outside the family. Being responsible to third parties is important in developing life skills. This was especially true in regard to projects which might have been put aside without outside guidance because of the time and discipline involved, such as preparing a school play, and entering a Science Fair.
WLC enriches homeschool programs. The fruits become more and more obvious with the passing of time.
Richard & Jo-Anne Ruff
Westerly Learning Center has been an essential component of our children's homeschool experience. At WLC they've had the benefit of studying with excellent teachers who are passionate about their subjects; they've been inspired to work hard on projects, knowing that they will be presenting them to their teachers and peers; they've learned to meet deadlines, to study for tests, and have experienced the pleasure and responsibility of being part of a caring community. They've been influenced and inspired by some of the best role models they'll ever meet -- all in an atmosphere that is relaxed and nurturing, yet challenging and filled with the joy and excitement of discovery.
I think it's impossible to overstate the value of our children's experiences at WLC. The homeschooling community here is privileged to have such a valuable resource available to us.
Richard & Rebecca Jaffe
Throughout our 17 years of homeschooling, our four children attended the Westerly Learning Center. It was the perfect supplement for what we did at home; the perfect answer to outside concerns about socialization and a wonderful source of peer friendships. We are grateful that the WLC enabled us to homeschool our children while still working part-time. It provided a great all-around rich educational experience for our kids. We wanted to teach basic subjects to our kids, but needed support from gifted teachers in the areas of science and history, in particular. The kids benefited from the experience of having homework, classroom rules, and peer interaction. Whether you are homeschooling for a short time or all the way through high school or college, the WLC provides valuable resources and support. The Westerly Learning Center was an enormous blessing to our family and the development of our children.
Reverend Bill & Debbie Boyce
Looking back at what Westerly Learning Center has meant for our children, we see two essential elements - one expected, and one unexpected. We expected an excellent learning environment and WLC was exactly that. It helped my daughters learn "how to learn" through observation, analysis, and synthesis through presentations. The subjects were those where home-schooling families are likely to run short on expertise - like High School Biology - and where groups offer better learning - like Speech and Writing. The arts and world languages were other areas we benefited greatly from.
It has been more than ten years since our eldest was at the Center, and she along with her sisters still comment on the quality of teaching offered and knowledge discovered over at WLC. The unexpected element was the life-long friendships our daughters were able to begin and foster. As we look back, we realize what an integral part of the educational and social experiences of our children WLC became.
Steve & Ester Smith