Mixed age pods allow kids to truly collaborate within a group of diversified learners. Age is not an effective measure for determining when a child is ready for proficiency in a skill or subject. Mixing ages gives kids the opportunity to teach one another which builds confidence and relationship skills.
Pods are the main working groups of Buckeye. They consist of 8 to 12 seeds, the word we use for students, assisted by a primary co-learner who is their champion and guide.
Pod members work closely together and rely on each other for support and accountability. When seeds learn from one another they develop leadership, maximize comprehension and develop relationships. They learn to have difficult, authentic conversation while exploring what it means to be accountable to their pod.
Separating kids by age creates intense peer pressure which reduces empathy and takes energy away from development and mastery.