What is Creator's House?

Creator’s House is education for the 21st century learning. We use state-of-the-art learning software, real-world projects, Socratic discussions, and a Hero’s Journey dialogue in a student-driven, multi-age learning studio.  Our students are independent learners who find great joy in learning, in a tight knit community that upholds the highest standards of excellence.  We are an affiliate of the Acton Academy in Austin, Texas.

The best way to understand what we do is to talk with us, and check out one of our info sessions.

What is Creator's House a religious school?

Creator’s House founders are Christians, but not run as a traditional Christian school: We hold the belief that humans are designed to be the hands and feet of God in the world, using their gifts to the best of their abilities. Because Acton encourages exploration and independent learning, however, we leave the teaching of specific doctrine up to individual families. Children and families of all faiths are welcome at Creator’s House.

What is the Socratic Method and why do we use it?

In the Socratic method, a teacher serves as a guide, setting up scenarios and asking questions to stimulate critical thinking and independent learning. Creator’s House uses the Socratic method rather than lectures because through discussions and actively making arguments to support their beliefs, students gain a better understanding of a topic than by passively taking notes during a lecture. It creates critical thinkers, willing to take a stand for something they believe, in a way that promotes deep learning.

Is the Creator's House a Montessori school?

We respect and incorporate Maria Montessori’s philosophy but we are not a Montessori school. We also use the latest interactive technologies, hands on projects, and the Socratic Method for discussions.

What do you mean by a Hero's Journey?

We believe that each of us has a special calling in life. Intentional pursuit of this calling inevitably forces us to face a series of trials and tests. When faced with courage, integrity, and purpose we are transformed, becoming the heroes in our own lives and the lives of others. This leads to a satisfying and fulfilled life. Our mission is to prepare your child for his or her special journey.  We also believe that parents have a unique role in raising their children according to their unique original design.

What is an "Independent Learner"?

Someone who can research questions, follow instructions, solve problems—admit that they don’t know something and figure out a solution when they hit a roadblock without asking an adult for help — participate in discussions, and strive for mastery.

What do you mean by "Learner-driven Community"?

Acton founder Jeff Sandefer coined the term “learner-driven community,” and we think it captures the two most important aspects of our school. First, we are self-directed, meaning that kids are in charge of their own learning. Second, we are a community of learners in which students are bound together by their pledge to hold themselves and each other to high standards.

What do you mean by "Every child is a genius"?

At Creator’s House, we encourage students to adopt a “growth mindset” rather than a “fixed mindset.” Those with a fixed mindset believe intelligence is an inborn trait. You’re either a “genius” or you’re not. In contrast, those with a growth mindset believe they can develop their intelligence over time. This can lead to profoundly different behaviors. For instance, children who believe intelligence is fixed often value looking smart above all else, avoid taking risks, and fear failure. Children with a growth mindset view challenging work as an opportunity to grow and view failure as a an opportunity to learn. At Creator’s House, we define “genius” as intelligent behaviors in pursuit of personal goals. Every child can be ingenious in overcoming obstacles and solving problems to pursue his or her own path. For more on the growth mindset, see Stanford University psychologist Carol Dweck’s article “Even Geniuses Work Hard” or her book Mindset: The New Psychology of Success.

Will children be grouped into grades?

We believe that children learn best when working with children younger and older than themselves rather than split up into groups based solely on age. This allows children to be both teachers and learners, further developing their learning.

Does Creator's House serve special needs children?

We are not trained to serve children with serious learning disabilities and do not feel, at this time, that we would be equipped to best serve those children on their hero’s journey.  We do want to keep an open mind though and encourage parents to submit their application if they think Creator’s House would be a good fit.

What do you mean by "Every child can change the world"?

We believe each of our students have gifts and passions unique to them. By using these gifts and passions to serve others, they can change the world. This may be as simple as becoming a shoe-shiner who tells stories and makes people’s day just by doing his job with love and vigor. It may be by becoming a coach who sees the light in a child’s eyes and guides her to pursue a dream. It may be by becoming a father or mother who leads a family on a Hero’s Journey. It may be becoming an entrepreneur or business leader guided by compassion and integrity.

How much homework will there be?

We believe that children need time to play, relax, and be with family and friends. There will not be any homework assigned.

How does Creator's House track progress without grades?

Creator’s House tracks progress through student portfolios, learning exhibitions, peer reviews, goal monitoring, online dashboards, learning badges, and a once-a-year standardized test. For more on how we track progress, see “How do I know if my child is growing morally and intellectually?” by Acton founder Laura Sandefer.

What is Mastery Learning?

In the traditional educational model, a certain amount of class time is devoted to a particular topic or concept; when that time is over, the entire class moves on, despite widely varying degrees of mastery over the material. In contrast, with mastery learning, students proceed at varying rates toward the same level of mastery. The curriculum is not structured in terms of time, but in terms of target levels of comprehension and achievement. We use a mastery learning approach to core subjects such as math, reading, and writing. For more on mastery learning, watch “Sal Khan on Digital and Physical Learning” or read “5 Myths about Mastery-Based Learning.”

Is Creator's House an accredited school?

Our studios are accredited through the International Association of Learner-Driven Schools.  We are starting out as a homeschool co-op and working on becoming a private school with the State Board of Education.

What is Acton Academy and Creator's House and are they different?

Acton Academy is the original school started in Austin, Texas by Laura and Jeff Sandefer in 2009.  Creator’s House is led by a team of entrepreneurs and parents in Bellevue, WA.  We are a separate entity working in deep collaboration with the Acton Academy. The purpose of this differentiation is to be able to adapt and serve the needs of our parents, students, and the rest of the community here in the greater Seattle area.