Desert View is based on a philosophy of individualized instruction in a noncompetitive classroom atmosphere. The ratio of students to teachers is accordingly kept low. Children in the school range from 5 to 10 years of age in classes from kindergarten through fourth grade. Children of different ages are encouraged to work and play in a variety of flexible groupings and thus learn from each other. It is expected that parents will take an active interest in their child's education through activities such as volunteering in the classroom, driving on field trips, and doing special class activities.
The goals of Desert View Learning Center include:
- To foster academic excellence.
- To provide a warm, accepting, and challenging environment in which children learn to enjoy school and see themselves as competent individuals.
- To create individual academic and social goals based on the abilities and needs of each child.
- To encourage self-sufficiency by teaching social and problem solving skills.
- To offer a wide variety of experiences without the limitations of common stereotypes.
- To inspire children to have a lifelong love of learning.
The integrated curriculum at Desert View includes developing skills and concepts, which are usually taught under subject headings of reading, language arts, math, science, social studies, health, physical education, art, music, and drama. Teachers design individual programs for each child based on developmental needs and abilities. Reading and math are usually taught on a one-to-one basis.
The school is well equipped with a large variety of hands-on materials for teaching science and math. In addition, the surrounding desert is used for studying the environment and the relationships between plants, animals, and people.
Specialists in areas such as art, dance, music, drama, Spanish, and physical education are part of the permanent teaching staff.