The Elisabeth Morrow School's shared purpose is to provide exemplary academics and character development in a diverse and inclusive child-centered community, inspiring students to become curious scholars, ethical leaders, and global citizens.

The Lower School (kindergarten through fourth grade) builds upon the knowledge and habits of mind gained in students’ early years, increasingly challenging children to be active problem solvers, creative thinkers and innovative learners. Small class sizes and experienced faculty ensure that learning is personalized to both challenge and support students, allowing them to achieve their greatest potential. We focus on building core academic skills while integrating multiple subject areas wherever appropriate. Innovation Alley allows for the incorporation of all of the elements of STEAM (science, technology, engineering, arts and mathematics) within a multi-use, state-of-the-art space. Character education through our 4 C’s (courtesy, consideration, cooperation and compassion) is reinforced in this division through service projects that capitalize on young students’ capacity for empathy and leadership. Instrumental music lessons, offered four times a week to third and fourth graders, is a unique part of our program.

Kindergarten

Our kindergarten classrooms are in Chilton House, ensuring appropriate curricular continuity with our early childhood program. In addition to two head teachers who provide differentiated instruction, students make use of the science lab in Little School and also use our 14-acre campus as a classroom for environmental science. Our Math in Focus curriculum emphasizes activities to develop number sense and a deeper understanding of a productive community is the foundation of the social studies curriculum. Students continue their study of Spanish. Integrated technology, utilizing a wide range of tools, supports learning and creativity at all levels while students are introduced to basic design, programming and computing practices. Field trips are offered to support the curriculum and students participate in weekly gatherings to strengthen community and character and build upon the 4 C’s — courtesy, consideration, cooperation and compassion — that are keystone values of our school.


Lower School Distinctions

CORE

The Lower School social-emotional learning (SEL) program is an essential part of our school culture. Direct instruction of SEL skills occur in weekly CORE classes led by our school counselor, divisional leaders, director of special learning services, school nurses and our faculty and staff. In CORE, students begin to recognize their emotions and apply the knowledge, attitudes, and skills necessary to understand and manage emotions, set and achieve goals, show empathy to others, and develop the skills and habits of mind to maintain positive relationships and make responsible decisions.

G Day

Providing students and faculty with time to connect through shared interests within the framework of the school year is what “G day" is all about at EMS. Creating opportunities that further students’ self-awareness by pursuing academic interests outside of the explicit grade level curriculum, creates pathways for students to discover new interests while developing their decision-making skills. Scheduled monthly, students will self-select into a variety of learning cohorts to explore, create, design, and do what they think will best further their goals as learners and responsible citizens.


Instrumental Music

Instrumental music is part of EMS' curriculum starting in third grade. The program includes group lesson instruction four times per week, ensemble work and a full symphony orchestra experience. Instrumental classes are offered in strings, brass, woodwinds and percussion.

Students study the rudiments of music theory, sight-reading and notation through their lesson programs. Students have the opportunity to perform in several ensembles, including the Little School Concert Band, the Little School Percussion Ensemble, the Cello Ensemble and the Violin Ensemble. All of these ensembles work separately at the beginning of the semester. They come together at the end of each semester in a culminating performance as “The Little School Symphony.”


Math in Focus

EMS uses Math in Focus, the U.S. version of Singapore Math, starting in kindergarten. Math in Focus focuses on a progression from the concrete, where concepts are introduced through hands-on experiences to pictorial, where students visualize the concept and represent it pictorially through models, to abstract, where students use abstract numbers and symbols when they have enough context to understand what they mean. The children learn through whole group and small group activities

STEAM

Students in Little School use their prior knowledge, content and skills to learn and contextualize science, technology, engineering, arts, and mathematics (STEAM) lessons and projects. Students make connections within the STEAM disciplines and core subject areas, learn to work collaboratively with one another, help solve real-world problems and actively participate in the engineering design process. They take steps to build empathy and care for targeted audiences, focus, brainstorm, make, and optimize solutions. They reflect on this process to develop their engineering practices and critical thinking skills.

Lessons and projects are aligned to connect to areas of study at their grade level. The overall goal of these processes and lessons is to enrich each student’s understanding of their local environment, and encourage compassion and creativity to making the wider world a better place.


Step Ahead Program

EMS provides an innovative evidence-based multi-sensory reading program called Step Ahead for students in first through fourth grade who need additional assistance in reading accurately and fluently. We utilize the Wilson Fundations program; a multi-sensory, structured, systematic, and sequenced approach to reading instruction. Instruction focuses on phonemic awareness, decoding, accuracy, fluency, comprehension, and automatic word recognition of spelling and sight words. Students receive one-to-one attention to address their individual needs.

Additionally, The Director of Special Learning Services, along with classroom teachers, the school psychologist and division head, helps identify students in need of support. Areas of assessment include academic, language, and social and emotional functioning. A trained reading specialist and/or learning specialist provide services to students. Differentiated instruction in all grades fosters a commitment to understanding students’ learning styles and accommodating learning differences.

First Grade

First graders are developmentally able to tackle increasing academic challenge and their natural curiosity as learners allows them to engage in a multiplicity of literacy and numeracy experiences across the curriculum. Literature is taught daily through a combination of phonics and language-rich experiences. Daily writing experiences increase as students expand sentence structure and content and begin to focus on punctuation and spelling. In math, students move through a balanced instructional approach within our Math in Focus curriculum, designed to develop computational skills and procedures and conceptual thinking and problem-solving strategies, while in social studies students begin to make meaningful connections between each other, their school and their neighborhood. First grade scientists use our 14-acre campus to explore and observe the natural world, and in Spanish, first graders reinforce and expand vocabulary while discovering Mexican culture. Technology is woven into all subject areas as appropriate to augment learning and demonstrate knowledge, giving students the opportunity to create, design and access information in new, digitally enhanced ways.


Lower School Distinctions

CORE

The Lower School social-emotional learning (SEL) program is an essential part of our school culture. Direct instruction of SEL skills occur in weekly CORE classes led by our school counselor, divisional leaders, director of special learning services, school nurses and our faculty and staff. In CORE, students begin to recognize their emotions and apply the knowledge, attitudes, and skills necessary to understand and manage emotions, set and achieve goals, show empathy to others, and develop the skills and habits of mind to maintain positive relationships and make responsible decisions.

G DAY

Providing students and faculty with time to connect through shared interests within the framework of the school year is what “G day" is all about at EMS. Creating opportunities that further students’ self-awareness by pursuing academic interests outside of the explicit grade level curriculum, creates pathways for students to discover new interests while developing their decision-making skills. Scheduled monthly, students will self-select into a variety of learning cohorts to explore, create, design, and do what they think will best further their goals as learners and responsible citizens.


Instrumental Music

Instrumental music is part of the curriculum starting in third grade. The program includes group lesson instruction four times per week, ensemble work and a full symphony orchestra experience. Instrumental classes are offered in strings, brass, woodwinds and percussion.

Students study the rudiments of music theory, sight-reading and notation through their lesson programs. Students have the opportunity to perform in several ensembles, including the Little School Concert Band, the Little School Percussion Ensemble, the Cello Ensemble and the Violin Ensemble. All of these ensembles work separately at the beginning of the semester. They come together at the end of each semester in a culminating performance as “The Little School Symphony.”


STEAM

Students in Little School use their prior knowledge, content and skills to learn and contextualize science, technology, engineering, arts, and mathematics (STEAM) lessons and projects. Students make connections within the STEAM disciplines and core subject areas, learn to work collaboratively with one another, help solve real-world problems and actively participate in the engineering design process. They take steps to build empathy and care for targeted audiences, focus, brainstorm, make, and optimize solutions. They reflect on this process to develop their engineering practices and critical thinking skills.

Lessons and projects are aligned to connect to areas of study at their grade level. The overall goal of these processes and lessons is to enrich each student’s understanding of their local environment, and encourage compassion and creativity to making the wider world a better place.


Math in Focus

EMS uses Math in Focus, the U.S. version of Singapore Math, starting in kindergarten. Math in Focus focuses on a progression from the concrete, where concepts are introduced through hands-on experiences to pictorial, where students visualize the concept and represent it pictorially through models, to abstract, where students use abstract numbers and symbols when they have enough context to understand what they mean. The children learn through whole group and small group activities

Step Ahead Program

EMS provides an innovative evidence-based multi-sensory reading program called Step Ahead for students in first through fourth grade who need additional assistance in reading accurately and fluently. We utilize the Wilson Fundations program; a multi-sensory, structured, systematic, and sequenced approach to reading instruction. Instruction focuses on phonemic awareness, decoding, accuracy, fluency, comprehension, and automatic word recognition of spelling and sight words. Students receive one-to-one attention to address their individual needs.

Additionally, The Director of Special Learning Services, along with classroom teachers, the school psychologist and division head, helps identify students in need of support. Areas of assessment include academic, language, and social and emotional functioning. A trained reading specialist and/or learning specialist provide services to students. Differentiated instruction in all grades fosters a commitment to understanding students’ learning styles and accommodating learning differences.



Second Grade

Second graders build on the skills they have acquired in first grade to become truly independent learners. Firmly cemented literacy and numeracy skills allow for more in-depth exploration of materials, including a more conceptual understanding of mathematics and the comprehension of sophisticated material in language arts. Small group instruction further solidifies successful decoding, fluency, spelling and written expression and comprehension strategies.
Our Math in Focus curriculum emphasizes computational skills and procedures and conceptual thinking and problem-solving strategies. The social studies curriculum allows students to acquire the knowledge and skills to think analytically about local, national and global citizenship, community, and culture. Second graders become experts in several specific areas of scientific knowledge and apply scientific terms and concepts to their data and observations. They deepen comprehension and oral skills in Spanish. Technology continues to be woven into all subject areas. Projects are augmented and enhanced with multimedia design, crafting, collaborating and accessing resources beyond the classroom.


Lower School Distinctions

CORE

The Lower School social-emotional learning (SEL) program is an essential part of our school culture. Direct instruction of SEL skills occur in weekly CORE classes led by our school counselor, divisional leaders, director of special learning services, school nurses and our faculty and staff. In CORE, students begin to recognize their emotions and apply the knowledge, attitudes, and skills necessary to understand and manage emotions, set and achieve goals, show empathy to others, and develop the skills and habits of mind to maintain positive relationships and make responsible decisions.

G DAY

Providing students and faculty with time to connect through shared interests within the framework of the school year is what “G day" is all about at EMS. Creating opportunities that further students’ self-awareness by pursuing academic interests outside of the explicit grade level curriculum, creates pathways for students to discover new interests while developing their decision-making skills. Scheduled monthly, students will self-select into a variety of learning cohorts to explore, create, design, and do what they think will best further their goals as learners and responsible citizens.


Instrumental Music

Instrumental music is part of the curriculum starting in third grade. The program includes group lesson instruction four times per week, ensemble work and a full symphony orchestra experience. Instrumental classes are offered in strings, brass, woodwinds and percussion.

Students study the rudiments of music theory, sight-reading and notation through their lesson programs. Students have the opportunity to perform in several ensembles, including the Little School Concert Band, the Little School Percussion Ensemble, the Cello Ensemble and the Violin Ensemble. All of these ensembles work separately at the beginning of the semester. They come together at the end of each semester in a culminating performance as “The Little School Symphony.”


Math in Focus

EMS uses Math in Focus, the U.S. version of Singapore Math, starting in kindergarten. Math in Focus focuses on a progression from the concrete, where concepts are introduced through hands-on experiences to pictorial, where students visualize the concept and represent it pictorially through models, to abstract, where students use abstract numbers and symbols when they have enough context to understand what they mean. The children learn through whole group and small group activities

STEAM

Students in Little School use their prior knowledge, content and skills to learn and contextualize science, technology, engineering, arts, and mathematics (STEAM) lessons and projects. Students make connections within the STEAM disciplines and core subject areas, learn to work collaboratively with one another, help solve real-world problems and actively participate in the engineering design process. They take steps to build empathy and care for targeted audiences, focus, brainstorm, make, and optimize solutions. They reflect on this process to develop their engineering practices and critical thinking skills.

Lessons and projects are aligned to connect to areas of study at their grade level. The overall goal of these processes and lessons is to enrich each student’s understanding of their local environment, and encourage compassion and creativity to making the wider world a better place.


Step Ahead Program

EMS provides an innovative evidence-based multi-sensory reading program called Step Ahead for students in first through fourth grade who need additional assistance in reading accurately and fluently. We utilize the Wilson Fundations program; a multi-sensory, structured, systematic, and sequenced approach to reading instruction. Instruction focuses on phonemic awareness, decoding, accuracy, fluency, comprehension, and automatic word recognition of spelling and sight words. Students receive one-to-one attention to address their individual needs.

Additionally, The Director of Special Learning Services, along with classroom teachers, the school psychologist and division head, helps identify students in need of support. Areas of assessment include academic, language, and social and emotional functioning. A trained reading specialist and/or learning specialist provide services to students. Differentiated instruction in all grades fosters a commitment to understanding students’ learning styles and accommodating learning differences.


Third Grade

Third grade students can work independently and consistently on the strategies and skills necessary for a more sophisticated understanding of their academic subjects. Individual lessons, small group instruction and whole class groupings occur daily. Reading and writing are integral parts of all curricular studies, and instruction guides students to more inferential reading skills. Students’ written expression includes both expository and creative writing as well as factual writing related to research projects. Social studies in third grade explores how the environment affects the way people live. Students answer how and why people form beliefs in order to function in society. In our Math in Focus curriculum, students sharpen their ability to mentally calculate problems as multiple problem-solving strategies and algorithms are demonstrated, discussed and applied. Third grade scientists relate their lab experiences to real-world applications and develop independence in the lab as they experiment, measure and record. Students continue to practice their design skills, incorporating both science and social studies concepts. Students continue to build upon the Spanish vocabulary learned in earlier years and gain the ability to engage in simple conversations. They work on all four areas of language acquisition: listening, speaking, reading and writing. Technology is used in activities such as include conducting research, collaborating with peers in real time, crafting sophisticated reports, designing and programming with professional programs and engaging in opportunities to develop empathy and applying the 4 C’s in digital spaces.

Lower School Distinctions

CORE

The Lower School social-emotional learning (SEL) program is an essential part of our school culture. Direct instruction of SEL skills occur in weekly CORE classes led by our school counselor, divisional leaders, director of special learning services, school nurses and our faculty and staff. In CORE, students begin to recognize their emotions and apply the knowledge, attitudes, and skills necessary to understand and manage emotions, set and achieve goals, show empathy to others, and develop the skills and habits of mind to maintain positive relationships and make responsible decisions.

G DAY

Providing students and faculty with time to connect through shared interests within the framework of the school year is what “G day" is all about at EMS. Creating opportunities that further students’ self-awareness by pursuing academic interests outside of the explicit grade level curriculum, creates pathways for students to discover new interests while developing their decision-making skills. Scheduled monthly, students will self-select into a variety of learning cohorts to explore, create, design, and do what they think will best further their goals as learners and responsible citizens.


Instrumental Music

Instrumental music is part of the curriculum starting in third grade. The program includes group lesson instruction four times per week, ensemble work and a full symphony orchestra experience. Instrumental classes are offered in strings, brass, woodwinds and percussion.

Students study the rudiments of music theory, sight-reading and notation through their lesson programs. Students have the opportunity to perform in several ensembles, including the Little School Concert Band, the Little School Percussion Ensemble, the Cello Ensemble and the Violin Ensemble. All of these ensembles work separately at the beginning of the semester. They come together at the end of each semester in a culminating performance as “The Little School Symphony.”


Math in Focus

EMS uses Math in Focus, the U.S. version of Singapore Math, starting in kindergarten. Math in Focus focuses on a progression from the concrete, where concepts are introduced through hands-on experiences to pictorial, where students visualize the concept and represent it pictorially through models, to abstract, where students use abstract numbers and symbols when they have enough context to understand what they mean. The children learn through whole group and small group activities

STEAM

Students in Little School use their prior knowledge, content and skills to learn and contextualize science, technology, engineering, arts, and mathematics (STEAM) lessons and projects. Students make connections within the STEAM disciplines and core subject areas, learn to work collaboratively with one another, help solve real-world problems and actively participate in the engineering design process. They take steps to build empathy and care for targeted audiences, focus, brainstorm, make, and optimize solutions. They reflect on this process to develop their engineering practices and critical thinking skills.

Lessons and projects are aligned to connect to areas of study at their grade level. The overall goal of these processes and lessons is to enrich each student’s understanding of their local environment, and encourage compassion and creativity to making the wider world a better place.


Step Ahead Program

EMS provides an innovative evidence-based multi-sensory reading program called Step Ahead for students in first through fourth grade who need additional assistance in reading accurately and fluently. We utilize the Wilson Fundations program; a multi-sensory, structured, systematic, and sequenced approach to reading instruction. Instruction focuses on phonemic awareness, decoding, accuracy, fluency, comprehension, and automatic word recognition of spelling and sight words. Students receive one-to-one attention to address their individual needs.

Additionally, The Director of Special Learning Services, along with classroom teachers, the school psychologist and division head, helps identify students in need of support. Areas of assessment include academic, language, and social and emotional functioning. A trained reading specialist and/or learning specialist provide services to students. Differentiated instruction in all grades fosters a commitment to understanding students’ learning styles and accommodating learning differences.


Fourth Grade

Fourth graders are at the end of their elementary school lives at The Elisabeth Morrow School and, thus, ready to take on their roles as leaders in the Little School. A challenging curriculum ensures that they will be ready for the demands of middle school in all areas, including research, computation and writing skills. Daily reading instruction includes factual and inferential reading skills and written responses to literature. In Math in Focus, students can communicate mathematical thinking and compute with accuracy and speed. In science, students are given the opportunity to develop their own investigational methods and encouraged to use mathematical patterns to draw conclusions. In Spanish, students continue to advance in all four areas of language acquisition: listening, speaking, reading and writing. Students engage in complex uses of technology which continue to develop many necessary literacies within all curricular subjects. The uses of technology include an emphasis on social media literacy, research and design skills, media production, app or game development as well as personalized technology learning goals. These areas continue to offer opportunities to develop empathy and apply the 4 C’s in digital spaces.

Lower School Distinctions

CORE

The Lower School social-emotional learning (SEL) program is an essential part of our school culture. Direct instruction of SEL skills occur in weekly CORE classes led by our school counselor, divisional leaders, director of special learning services, school nurses and our faculty and staff. In CORE, students begin to recognize their emotions and apply the knowledge, attitudes, and skills necessary to understand and manage emotions, set and achieve goals, show empathy to others, and develop the skills and habits of mind to maintain positive relationships and make responsible decisions.

G DAY

Providing students and faculty with time to connect through shared interests within the framework of the school year is what “G day" is all about at EMS. Creating opportunities that further students’ self-awareness by pursuing academic interests outside of the explicit grade level curriculum, creates pathways for students to discover new interests while developing their decision-making skills. Scheduled monthly, students will self-select into a variety of learning cohorts to explore, create, design, and do what they think will best further their goals as learners and responsible citizens.


Instrumental Music

Instrumental music is part of the curriculum starting in third grade. The program includes group lesson instruction four times per week, ensemble work and a full symphony orchestra experience. Instrumental classes are offered in strings, brass, woodwinds and percussion.

Students study the rudiments of music theory, sight-reading and notation through their lesson programs. Students have the opportunity to perform in several ensembles, including the Little School Concert Band, the Little School Percussion Ensemble, the Cello Ensemble and the Violin Ensemble. All of these ensembles work separately at the beginning of the semester. They come together at the end of each semester in a culminating performance as “The Little School Symphony.”


Math in Focus

EMS uses Math in Focus, the U.S. version of Singapore Math, starting in kindergarten. Math in Focus focuses on a progression from the concrete, where concepts are introduced through hands-on experiences to pictorial, where students visualize the concept and represent it pictorially through models, to abstract, where students use abstract numbers and symbols when they have enough context to understand what they mean. The children learn through whole group and small group activities

STEAM

Students in Little School use their prior knowledge, content and skills to learn and contextualize science, technology, engineering, arts, and mathematics (STEAM) lessons and projects. Students make connections within the STEAM disciplines and core subject areas, learn to work collaboratively with one another, help solve real-world problems and actively participate in the engineering design process. They take steps to build empathy and care for targeted audiences, focus, brainstorm, make, and optimize solutions. They reflect on this process to develop their engineering practices and critical thinking skills.

Lessons and projects are aligned to connect to areas of study at their grade level. The overall goal of these processes and lessons is to enrich each student’s understanding of their local environment, and encourage compassion and creativity to making the wider world a better place.


Step Ahead Program

EMS provides an innovative evidence-based multi-sensory reading program called Step Ahead for students in first through fourth grade who need additional assistance in reading accurately and fluently. We utilize the Wilson Fundations program; a multi-sensory, structured, systematic, and sequenced approach to reading instruction. Instruction focuses on phonemic awareness, decoding, accuracy, fluency, comprehension, and automatic word recognition of spelling and sight words. Students receive one-to-one attention to address their individual needs.

Additionally, The Director of Special Learning Services, along with classroom teachers, the school psychologist and division head, helps identify students in need of support. Areas of assessment include academic, language, and social and emotional functioning. A trained reading specialist and/or learning specialist provide services to students. Differentiated instruction in all grades fosters a commitment to understanding students’ learning styles and accommodating learning differences.


Lower School Subjects

LOWER SCHOOL SUBJECTS

Art
CORE
Gardening (Kindergarten, first and second grade)
Instrumental Music (third and fourth grade)
Language Arts
Library Science and Media Studies
Mathematics (Math in Focus)
Music
Physical Education and Health and Wellness
Science
Social Studies
Spanish
STEAM (integrated into all subject areas)


Lower School Distinctions

CORE

The Lower School social-emotional learning (SEL) program is an essential part of our school culture. Direct instruction of SEL skills occur in weekly CORE classes led by our school counselor, divisional leaders, director of special learning services, school nurses and our faculty and staff. In CORE, students begin to recognize their emotions and apply the knowledge, attitudes, and skills necessary to understand and manage emotions, set and achieve goals, show empathy to others, and develop the skills and habits of mind to maintain positive relationships and make responsible decisions.

G DAY

Providing students and faculty with time to connect through shared interests within the framework of the school year is what “G day" is all about at EMS. Creating opportunities that further students’ self-awareness by pursuing academic interests outside of the explicit grade level curriculum, creates pathways for students to discover new interests while developing their decision-making skills. Scheduled monthly, students will self-select into a variety of learning cohorts to explore, create, design, and do what they think will best further their goals as learners and responsible citizens.


Instrumental Music

Instrumental music is part of the curriculum starting in third grade. The program includes group lesson instruction four times per week, ensemble work and a full symphony orchestra experience. Instrumental classes are offered in strings, brass, woodwinds and percussion.

Students study the rudiments of music theory, sight-reading and notation through their lesson programs. Students have the opportunity to perform in several ensembles, including the Little School Concert Band, the Little School Percussion Ensemble, the Cello Ensemble and the Violin Ensemble. All of these ensembles work separately at the beginning of the semester. They come together at the end of each semester in a culminating performance as “The Little School Symphony.”


Math in Focus

EMS uses Math in Focus, the U.S. version of Singapore Math, starting in kindergarten. Math in Focus focuses on a progression from the concrete, where concepts are introduced through hands-on experiences to pictorial, where students visualize the concept and represent it pictorially through models, to abstract, where students use abstract numbers and symbols when they have enough context to understand what they mean. The children learn through whole group and small group activities

STEAM

Students in Little School use their prior knowledge, content and skills to learn and contextualize science, technology, engineering, arts, and mathematics (STEAM) lessons and projects. Students make connections within the STEAM disciplines and core subject areas, learn to work collaboratively with one another, help solve real-world problems and actively participate in the engineering design process. They take steps to build empathy and care for targeted audiences, focus, brainstorm, make, and optimize solutions. They reflect on this process to develop their engineering practices and critical thinking skills.

Lessons and projects are aligned to connect to areas of study at their grade level. The overall goal of these processes and lessons is to enrich each student’s understanding of their local environment, and encourage compassion and creativity to making the wider world a better place.


Step Ahead Program

EMS provides an innovative evidence-based multi-sensory reading program called Step Ahead for students in first through fourth grade who need additional assistance in reading accurately and fluently.

The Director of Special Learning Services, along with classroom teachers, the school psychologist and division head, helps identify students in need of support. Areas of assessment include academic, language, and social and emotional functioning. A trained reading specialist and/or learning specialist provide services to students. Differentiated instruction in all grades fosters a commitment to understanding students’ learning styles and accommodating learning differences.

Curriculum Guide

Learn more about our curriculum, and school here.

Curriculum Guide 2016


Lower School Distinctions

CORE

The Lower School social-emotional learning (SEL) program is an essential part of our school culture. Direct instruction of SEL skills occur in weekly CORE classes led by our school counselor, divisional leaders, director of special learning services, school nurses and our faculty and staff. In CORE, students begin to recognize their emotions and apply the knowledge, attitudes, and skills necessary to understand and manage emotions, set and achieve goals, show empathy to others, and develop the skills and habits of mind to maintain positive relationships and make responsible decisions.

G DAY

Providing students and faculty with time to connect through shared interests within the framework of the school year is what “G day" is all about at EMS. Creating opportunities that further students’ self-awareness by pursuing academic interests outside of the explicit grade level curriculum, creates pathways for students to discover new interests while developing their decision-making skills. Scheduled monthly, students will self-select into a variety of learning cohorts to explore, create, design, and do what they think will best further their goals as learners and responsible citizens.


Instrumental Music

Instrumental music is part of EMS' curriculum starting in third grade. The program includes group lesson instruction four times per week, ensemble work and a full symphony orchestra experience. Instrumental classes are offered in strings, brass, woodwinds and percussion.

Students study the rudiments of music theory, sight-reading and notation through their lesson programs. Students have the opportunity to perform in several ensembles, including the Little School Concert Band, the Little School Percussion Ensemble, the Cello Ensemble and the Violin Ensemble. All of these ensembles work separately at the beginning of the semester. They come together at the end of each semester in a culminating performance as “The Little School Symphony.”


Math in Focus

EMS uses Math in Focus, the U.S. version of Singapore Math, starting in kindergarten. Math in Focus focuses on a progression from the concrete, where concepts are introduced through hands-on experiences to pictorial, where students visualize the concept and represent it pictorially through models, to abstract, where students use abstract numbers and symbols when they have enough context to understand what they mean. The children learn through whole group and small group activities

STEAM

Students in Little School use their prior knowledge, content and skills to learn and contextualize science, technology, engineering, arts, and mathematics (STEAM) lessons and projects. Students make connections within the STEAM disciplines and core subject areas, learn to work collaboratively with one another, help solve real-world problems and actively participate in the engineering design process. They take steps to build empathy and care for targeted audiences, focus, brainstorm, make, and optimize solutions. They reflect on this process to develop their engineering practices and critical thinking skills.

Lessons and projects are aligned to connect to areas of study at their grade level. The overall goal of these processes and lessons is to enrich each student’s understanding of their local environment, and encourage compassion and creativity to making the wider world a better place.


Step Ahead Program

EMS provides an innovative evidence-based multi-sensory reading program called Step Ahead for students in first through fourth grade who need additional assistance in reading accurately and fluently.

The Director of Special Learning Services, along with classroom teachers, the school psychologist and division head, helps identify students in need of support. Areas of assessment include academic, language, and social and emotional functioning. A trained reading specialist and/or learning specialist provide services to students. Differentiated instruction in all grades fosters a commitment to understanding students’ learning styles and accommodating learning differences.

Lower School Musical Performance Groups

Instrumental music is part of the curriculum starting in third grade. The program includes group lesson instruction four times per week, ensemble work and a full symphony orchestra experience. Instrumental classes are offered in strings, brass , woodwinds and percussion and families are invited in several times per year to observe their children's progress. Students have the opportunity to participate in several performance groups:

Little School Band
Little School Cello Ensemble
Little School Percussion Ensemble
Little School Symphony Orchestra
Little School Violin Ensemble


Lower School Distinctions

CORE

The Lower School social-emotional learning (SEL) program is an essential part of our school culture. Direct instruction of SEL skills occur in weekly CORE classes led by our school counselor, divisional leaders, director of special learning services, school nurses and our faculty and staff. In CORE, students begin to recognize their emotions and apply the knowledge, attitudes, and skills necessary to understand and manage emotions, set and achieve goals, show empathy to others, and develop the skills and habits of mind to maintain positive relationships and make responsible decisions.

G DAY

Providing students and faculty with time to connect through shared interests within the framework of the school year is what “G day" is all about at EMS. Creating opportunities that further students’ self-awareness by pursuing academic interests outside of the explicit grade level curriculum, creates pathways for students to discover new interests while developing their decision-making skills. Scheduled monthly, students will self-select into a variety of learning cohorts to explore, create, design, and do what they think will best further their goals as learners and responsible citizens.


Instrumental Music

Instrumental music is part of EMS' curriculum starting in third grade. The program includes group lesson instruction four times per week, ensemble work and a full symphony orchestra experience. Instrumental classes are offered in strings, brass, woodwinds and percussion.

Students study the rudiments of music theory, sight-reading and notation through their lesson programs. Students have the opportunity to perform in several ensembles, including the Little School Concert Band, the Little School Percussion Ensemble, the Cello Ensemble and the Violin Ensemble. All of these ensembles work separately at the beginning of the semester. They come together at the end of each semester in a culminating performance as “The Little School Symphony.”


Math in Focus

EMS uses Math in Focus, the U.S. version of Singapore Math, starting in kindergarten. Math in Focus focuses on a progression from the concrete, where concepts are introduced through hands-on experiences to pictorial, where students visualize the concept and represent it pictorially through models, to abstract, where students use abstract numbers and symbols when they have enough context to understand what they mean. The children learn through whole group and small group activities

STEAM

Students in Little School use their prior knowledge, content and skills to learn and contextualize science, technology, engineering, arts, and mathematics (STEAM) lessons and projects. Students make connections within the STEAM disciplines and core subject areas, learn to work collaboratively with one another, help solve real-world problems and actively participate in the engineering design process. They take steps to build empathy and care for targeted audiences, focus, brainstorm, make, and optimize solutions. They reflect on this process to develop their engineering practices and critical thinking skills.

Lessons and projects are aligned to connect to areas of study at their grade level. The overall goal of these processes and lessons is to enrich each student’s understanding of their local environment, and encourage compassion and creativity to making the wider world a better place.


Step Ahead Program

EMS provides an innovative evidence-based multi-sensory reading program called Step Ahead for students in first through fourth grade who need additional assistance in reading accurately and fluently.

The Director of Special Learning Services, along with classroom teachers, the school psychologist and division head, helps identify students in need of support. Areas of assessment include academic, language, and social and emotional functioning. A trained reading specialist and/or learning specialist provide services to students. Differentiated instruction in all grades fosters a commitment to understanding students’ learning styles and accommodating learning differences.