Primary School

Children are naturally eager to question, develop their own theories — even change a point of view.

Typical School Day

Primary school students begin each day with “Morning Meeting,” a time for students to greet one another, engage in community-building activities, practice critical social-emotional skills, and prepare for the day. This meeting also provides time to develop math skills such as learning the days of the week, counting by fives, tens, twos, or threes as they count the number of days in school, often reinforcing material taught earlier in the week. Each “E Day” morning begins with “Community Meeting,” a gathering of the entire primary school with each class taking a turn leading the meeting or spending time reflecting on Social Emotional Learning (SEL) topics highlighted in a particular month. Classes share happenings or activities from the classrom experience and the entire community celebrates birthdays, shares announcements, focuses on an “SEL Tool,” and closes with a mindful moment and/or a song. Approximately once a month, the primary school gathers with the middle school to build connections and celebrate milestones or special days within the larger school community.

Depending on the day, students might begin with math or language arts in small groups or attend a specialist class such as physical education or music. Primary students spend much of the morning engaged in academic subjects, with many of the specialist classes meeting in the afternoons. They attend specialist classes in half-class groups, which provide more individualized, focused instruction. Specialist classes rotate on a seven-day schedule, meeting once or twice during the rotation. This allows for longer class periods or more frequent specialist classes.

Primary students have a fifteen-minute break in the morning and another, longer recess after lunch. Recess time is an integral part of our program, with choices for students  including a variety of different activities each day. Students might choose to go to the art room to work on a project, or to freeze dance or do yoga, to help weed or play in the garden, read in the library, or run around on the playground.

Each day ends with a closing meeting when students reflect on the day, problem-solve issues, or simply say goodbye before heading home or on to the many activities available through the After School program. Primary students are also invited to join the supervised homework club in the library each afternoon.

 
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