Our vision is to reinvent education by challenging old beliefs and meeting our children from a place of trust.
The world is always changing and sometimes quicker than we can adapt. We don’t really know what awaits our children as adults. To get on their way they will need to learn to be focused, confident, independent, creative, open to mistakes, to solve problems, respect others, to think out of the box and to know their own bodies and boundaries. We concentrate on preparing them for whatever comes in their future.
Our key academic coaching method is Project Based Learning, which involves a student centered dynamic approach. The children work in groups or individually. It’s accompanied by English and Math as our main tools.
We guide children aged between 7 and 13 years in developing their own learning process, focusing on their passions and personal interests while providing the academic framework.
We believe every child is eager to learn, they just need the right attraction to unlock and unfold their intrinsic motivation.
We also feel it is important to support children learning the Portuguese language and understanding the culture.
As our learning center is based in this amazing country and we have access to such a beautiful and natural setting, we explore the surrounding farm and forest, get to know plants and native systems and also conduct scientific experiments to try and solve problems humanity is facing.
Educators & Experts
Anke is a qualified teacher and has been working for more than 10 years in several public schools. She specifically enjoyed working with children from different cultural backgrounds. Her big passion, besides education, is traveling. Adventurous as she is, she always found creative ways to combine those two passions. She’s been living and teaching in different schools all around the world.
Having seen so many different school systems evoke the strong wish to reinvent education. Her dream is to create a learning culture in which children can be fully themselves, learn with self motivation through their own experiences guided by enthusiastic passionate educators in an inspiring, stimulating environment.
With this project, her dream is finally coming true… For her, the cultivation of emotional intelligence and the inquiry of soft skills is equally important as learning how to read and write.
The children see her not only as an educator but also as a trusted friend that accompanies and guides them on their personal and academic path.
Hugo has led an adventurous life. He is easily inspired by and enthusiastic for a lot of things just like so many children. Thus it was an easy step for him to become a teacher and be around these wonderful creatures.
After 7 years in Waldorf School in Holland he and his family went to Portugal for a sabbatical, fell in love with the life here and never went back.
Hugo believes that school is, best case scenario, a school where children, parents and educators are living and working together as a tribe. Reflecting on each other. Where relation is top priority. Where consent is the base from where we begin.
He loves telling stories, solving maths riddles and take the time for what lives in the heart of the children.
Lisa is a Portuguese-Canadian educator who grew up in the town of Lagos, studied journalism in Lisbon, and then returned to Toronto to complete her bachelors of education. For the past eight years she has worked as a primary teacher in Toronto, Thailand and Portugal.
Lisa believes that the teaching and learning process should be led by the child who in turn is guided by an educator who can take their talents and interests and lead them to their full potential.
When teaching languages, Lisa loves to incorporate visual arts, stories and music into her lessons. She believes in supporting kids in leaving their comfort zones so they can discover what they are truly capable of.
Katjalisa has a background in Anthropology, somatic sex education and is a certified Acro Yoga Family teacher.
Her vision is to create a new culture of relating by providing pioneering (sexual) education for children, teenagers and adults.
The weekly sharing circles as well as the work around bodies & boundaries that she facilitates are for most kids the highlight of the week. In a playful way she practices with them the art of active listening and models them how to communicate non-violently. She empowers the children to make their own decisions based on their intuition and to be vulnerable and authentic in front of a group.
Katjalisa also facilitates the monthly mother circle in which she picks up on the most important themes of the month that were visible in the sharings of the kids.
She is mentored by internationally recognised authorities such as Sanderijn van der Doef, a leading figure in the Netherlands and abroad in the field of sexual education and Franice Oomen, writer, illustrator, trauma expert and Inner Voice Dialogue Coach.
MattieEmotional & Ecological Education
Mattie grew up on a biodynamic farm in the Netherlands and has a background in Anthropology. He is dedicated to restoring natural and human ecosystems.
Nature is his biggest source of inspiration. His mission is to empower the younger generation to work hand in hand with and to re-establish respect for nature.
Sharing his tools, insights and knowledge with children is the most hopeful thing he can do!
Together with Katjalisa, he holds space for the personal and emotional processes of the children and accompanies the boys on their journey into manhood. He always has an open ear and a compassionate heart for every child and has endless patience. His anger release techniques are popular amongst both boys and girls.
He facilitates the monthly father as well as other men's circles.
Introduce yourself and we'll be in touch!
Grow with us!Recruiting a second full-time educator
"Restore Nature has been a truly transformational experience for us as a family. We joined the project following 3-4 years of conventional schooling with two children aged 7 and 9. We came with open minds, hearts and a wish for our children to be outside in nature following a multitude of home schooling lock downs in the Netherlands. Whilst the project was out of our comfort zone in terms of what we were used to, we were ready to broaden our perspective on education as we knew it.
What we experienced not only impacted our children in a very positive way but our whole family. We quickly realized that where we thought our children were doing “ok” they were actually lacking the soft skills which are so important yet so easily overlooked in conventional schooling. These were quickly highlighted soon after joining the project and we were supported with home activities to help improve things like boundaries and communication. We witnessed the biggest change in our daughter who was quite anxious when we arrived in Portugal but settled so quickly at the project. Within a matter of weeks we witnessed such a big shift in confidence, self expression and creativity. We were concerned about lack of communication when it came to our son but his ability to share more at home also greatly improved within weeks of joining the project. Thank you for this beautifully unique vision and project.
Katjalisa & Mattie... you have inspired me/my family in so many ways. I salute you for your vision, energy and courage in setting up this project. We love you both! The impact you have had on our children and us as a family has been huge. Through the topics raised at school (and sometimes triggers in us) we were able to question our own parenting and bring more openness, honesty and communication into our family. So many little things were highlighted and it really bought a lot to the surface that we realized needed work. Our time at the project has definitely been as healing for our children as it has for us as a whole family. I am so inspired by what happens here and the mothers circle was something that really touched my heart. I feel so grateful to have been a part and thank you all for your honesty, openness and feeling of support during these special evenings."
Open day June 24, 2023
Join us for our first open day!
We are looking forward to sharing our vision and our pedagogical concept with you that we have co-created with a group of dedicated families and motivated educators.
Within 2 years, we have built a completely self-sufficient learning community located on the eco farm Vinha Velha that is known for supporting pioneering education.
On our open day you will get an insight into our daily routine, experience some of our work, meet the educator team, other parents and the kids that are part of the project.
Meeting point is at 11 am at the parking lot of Vinha Velha.
From there we start our walk together to the learning space, passing by the donkeys that are part of our daily farm care.
At the learning space we present some of the last passion projects the kids did with support from the educators and talk about the way we work, our values and the energetics behind. There will be time to answer both informative and personal questions.
You are welcome to stay for shared lunch and connect more with us.
Donations for both the school tour and the lunch are being highly appreciated.
Registration required. Please contact Katjalisa to confirm.
Summer Camp at Vinha Velha
Monday July 3rd - Friday July 7th
Kids age: 9 - 13 years
10am - 4pm
125 - 155 Euros per child
Main language: English
Other languages being spoken: Portuguese, German, Dutch
Experience the magic of our learning community while connecting to nature and having fun with other kids!
The summer camp is suitable for kids that want to have a great start to their holiday or for families that are thinking of joining our learning community from September on and want to get to know us. We have 6 open slots for kids between the ages of 9 - 12 and are excited to see who is gonna join us!
5 days at an idyllic spot in nature, fun & challenging outdoor activities, exciting team building games, educational treasure hunt, acrobatics & bodywork, stand up paddle boarding, lake time, theater
Daily meeting point is at 9:45am in the parking lot at Vinha Velha.
At 10 am we walk towards the learning space.
Until lunch time there will be facilitated activities by 2 educators.
After lunch until pick up time kids can choose to go to the lake or to have free play time around the learning space.
On Monday July 3rd all the educators will be at the parking lot to welcome the kids. All of them will participate in the treasure hunt and stay until lunch to get to know each other. The other days, there will be 2 educators present to share their passion and expertise with the kids.
Kids bring their own lunch, water and snacks for the whole day, organic sunscreen, swimming gear, solid walking shoes and whatever else they need to feel comfortable
A GLIMPSE INTO DAILY LIFE
Bodies & Boundaries for kids & parents
Are you interested in this one day workshop? Either for yourself and your family, for your own learning community or for your school class?
How will the day look:
We’ll start the day with a short sharing circle together with parents and children.
Then we’ll playfully explore through hands-on exercises our full body yes and our fully body no, work with our boundaries and learn healthy ways to communicate them.
After a shared lunch we will split up the groups. Through ‘stories as medicine’ both parents and kids can share in separate circles about their experiences.
Short closing circle with everyone.