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Exploring Alternatives in Azores

Escola Novas Rotas

Hi Portugal Lovers!

Did you know that there is an alternative public school in São Miguel island, Azores?

We have a guided visit to Escola Novas Rotas by the two families: A Pequena Grande Casa  and Quinta do Bom Despacho, as their children are students from this school.

It is a school without classes and with an unconventional organisation.

It follows the national school curriculum and all learning moments are identified and have correspondence, but the students are free to investigate the topics in several ways and take their own rhythm, so easily a student can be in the 6th year in one area of knowledge and in the 4th year in another area.

Teachers are seen as mentors and a guide to help to accomplish the curricular components.


Students have assemblies and make important decisions at school. They are also responsible for establishing the rules of coexistence, as well as solving problems or conflict situations.

There are boards in the rooms where they post what they want to learn and when.

From an early age, they are responsible for finding their method, plan and rhythm of study. We believe they will certainly be much better prepared to work in the future unsupervised, or on their own projects, or remotely for other companies.

It remains to be said that since it is a public school, this entire education system is approved and recognized.

This model is based on the assumptions of Holistic Education and is inspired by the  Escola da Ponte, in Santo Tirso, north of Portugal. If you don’t know them yet, you can contact them and schedule a visit. I visited both schools and it is super inspiring!




Tiny House on Wheels in Azores

We visited a couple who built their own house on wheels in the Azores!

On the tour we made around São Miguel, guided by Quinta do Bom Despacho, we visited a family with 2 children who built their own house on wheels, completely off grid.

A Pequena Grande Casa opened the doors and showed us how they built their system. They collect the rainwater and then they have a system to filter it. They have solar electricity and a humid toilet with a vermicompost process.

Everything returns to the soil, so the cycle feeds itself ??





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