Upper Elementary (Grades 3-5)
The transition between Lower Elementary (K-2) and Upper Elementary (3-5) years is substantial and we spend time preparing for this shift and implementing it. In the lower grades, children are learning to read, but as they approximate third grade, they are reading to learn. The majority of reading instruction is done through class novels, often complimenting the subject matter being taught in social studies. Teachers spend time teaching reading comprehension and inference strategies, as well as assigning questions for students to complete independently. By the time students reach upper elementary grades, there is an expectation that they are independent students with reliable work ethics. Vocabulary Workshop is taught in Grades 3-5. It is a program in which students learn how to spell and understand lists of words. They complete an assessment on each list of words on a bi-monthly basis.
Reading and writing go side-by-side and we provide our Lehrman students with a balanced literacy approach. Writing Workshop, a program that stems from Teachers College, Columbia University, introduces students to creative writing genres such as: narrative writing, non-fiction writing, expository writing, persuasive writing and realistic fiction. Students in Grades 1-5 learn how to write in different genres and how to progress through the writing process: brainstorming, drafting, revising, editing and publishing. Students work independently, in partnerships and small groups to elevate their skills and teacher conferencing is an integral part of this program.
We have adopted Progress in Mathematics as our math program in Grades K-5. Progress in Mathematics provides students with the foundational skills needed to become proficient in math. It is a consistent program that teaches students step-by-step directions and gives students opportunities to practice new skills. We are a reflective school and we have added certain topics into our curriculum that we feel are important in giving our Lehrman students a strong math base. We differentiate instruction, and if we feel that students need more challenging work, we compliment this program and offer additional work at every grade level.
Classification of Animals
Light and Sound
Life Science 1 (hierarchical classification of organisms, cells, DNA, plants)
Life Science 2 (human body systems)
Social Studies in Grades 3-5 is an integrated approach and is closely tied to reading and writing. As a school that implements Project Based Learning, we plan units purposefully so that our students learn new material in many of the different subject areas and that our curriculum is aligned, making connections and facilitating the learning process. In the uUpper elementary school grades students are taught how to research using child-friendly technology applications. They are also presented with novels that have historical components that are being studied in class. It is more about the process than the product and teachers document the learning process and spend class time asking thought provoking questions. One of our main goals for our Lehrman students is for them to dig deeper into our history and understand the significance of specific time periods. Students study the following units:
National and International Landmarks
Women in History
The Middle Ages
The American Revolution