Learning in the Lower School
At the heart of the Lower School is a focus on values.
With brilliant teachers who challenge students to be their best selves in the classroom and throughout the day, students gain a strong personal and academic foundation in the private elementary school for grades 1-5 at Park Tudor.
With an average class size of 17, teachers are able to take great care in getting to know each student and challenging them appropriately. Progressing through grades 1-5, the independent elementary school curriculum encourages students to take charge of their learning and investigate their own strengths and learning styles. Students have opportunities to work in small groups or independently throughout the day.
I aim for my students to grow into confident, kind and independent adults who are able to try new things and learn from mistakes.
~ Lori Morales, 3rd grade teacher
The Lower School private elementary curriculum builds skills that form a foundation for future learning and college preparation.
- Language Arts
- Humanities / Social Studies
- Physical Education
- Fine Arts - Music, Art, Dance, Young Strings, Band
- Magic Circle (with Lower School counselor)
Strong emphasis on Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM)
» Science: Lab sciences are taught at every grade level in the Lower School. A balanced curriculum includes units on life, earth and physical science in junior kindergarten to grade 3. Beginning chemistry is added in grades 4 and 5. The science program has a heavy emphasis on skill development and practicing the process skills of observation, measurement, classification and data analysis.
» Technology: Technology tools are available for student use in every classroom, and uses vary throughout the school. From word processing to digital book reports, from visual and auditory projects on ActivBoards to creative storytelling on iPads, 21st-century tools and skills are integrated into the classroom curriculum at every level.
» Engineering: Students in grades 3-5 are introduced to the engineering process and practice the steps of "design, build, analyze and improve" that are involved in engineering design. Students with an affinity for engineering also have the opportunity for additional work in an after-school program.
» Math: Math in Focus, the American version of Singapore Math, is Park Tudor Lower School's signature math program. Developed by international leaders in math education, the program is designed to help students develop a strong conceptual understanding of the essential math concepts. With Math in Focus, teachers teach a smaller, more clearly defined group of skills to mastery, rather than the spiraling curricular strand taught in a typical American program. This emphasis on mastery allows the students to delve deeply into the essential concepts and develop a much stronger understanding of math.
The Spanish language program at Park Tudor is another unique opportunity for our youngest learners. Each school day is infused with opportunities for students to listen and speak in Spanish. Three full-time Spanish teachers share their love of the language through songs, games and routines. Classroom teachers model language risk-taking, as they often learn along with the students. The program is enhanced through relationships and annual travel exchanges with schools in Uruguay and Spain.
The centrally located garden offers unique learning opportunities for our elementary students. In addition to learning earth science, math and social studies through gardening, all teachers use the space for outdoor learning. The garden has also inspired discussions on working together and serving our community.