Upper Elementary

5th & 6th Grades

Upper elementary students are transitioning into adolescence. Children in this age group are very similar to one another, although they present themselves in various ways. They are beginning to demand their independence, but still require emotional and organizational support.

Our curriculum is aligned to the state standards. By integrating the Montessori method and other curriculum supports, the students find the transition from a Montessori school to a traditional school seamless.

Our upper elementary classroom is divided into four areas: Practical Life, Mathematics, Language, and Cultural (history, geography, and science).

Practical Life
Each child is supplied with journals to record their daily work. These serve as organizational tools for the student, fostering independent learning, planning skills, and work organization.

Classroom meetings are done weekly as part of our Positive Discipline program. Conflict resolution and respect for self, peers and the environment are emphasized. Lessons in grace and courtesy remind students of manners and classroom protocols.

Students participate in community service with classroom jobs, recycling, and maintaining a clean outdoor environment.

The Upper Elementary language arts program includes listening and speaking, comprehension, vocabulary, spelling, grammar, and writing skills.

Advanced grammar instruction, sentence analysis, word study, and mechanics constitute the grammar component.

Through the use of the 6 Writing Traits and “Empowering Writers,” students participate in journal writing, process writing, and formal writing including book reports, essays, and writing assessments.

Reading instruction is accomplished through read-aloud, self-selection, and by assignment for group discussion work and literature circles. Reading comes from a variety of short prose, poetry, media, SRA, chapter books, Newberry Books, and classics.

Web based programs incorporated into the curriculum include Accelerated Reading (AR), Wordly Wise and Quizlet.

Math is presented in many different ways. All concepts are given when the child is ready and not at a given chronological age.

In order to work on mental agility, we work on Fast Math. Concepts include multiplication facts, reducing fractions, equations, improper fractions and mixed numbers, geometry, the US customary systems and metric system.

To review of concepts already presented, students work on daily math problems. Presentations are given students throughout the week based on their academic level. Presentations progress from the concrete to the abstract in all operations.

Our students constantly work above expected grade level. Students ready for the next level will continue with number theory, advanced math and pre-algebra presentations.

The cultural area consists of science, history, and geography. The
curriculum is designed to help students have authentic learning opportunities daily.

The Science program encompasses several areas of study. Over the
two-year cycle, students are introduced to concepts in life science, human body, earth science, and physical science. Experiments and the scientific method are incorporated across all sciences.

Our curriculum includes the use of the Full Option Science System (FOSS), Edusmart and the National Geographic magazine. We also use a comprehensive SRA science laboratory resource to engage students in further research studies. Our goal is to allow the students to experience science first hand and inspire future scientists.

The history program is a two year program where we study U.S. History one year and World Cultures the following year. The lessons are formulated to bring History to life. We use Studies Weekly newspapers to study the different eras in History. Students read the newspaper, highlight and take notes on class discussions. The students will role play, narrate stories, cook and dress up to describe periods in history. All of these projects reinforce and expand academic skills and artistic sensitivities.

Students will work in groups where they study various topics and present them to the class. The use of small group, whole group, and individual instruction is done as needed. In this manner the students experience different classroom settings. This allows students the opportunity to practice listening, speaking, discussing, participating, and storytelling skills.

Geography lessons include the study of landforms, water forms, and map skills. Students use various Montessori materials, Map Skills books, the National Geographic magazine, and various physical maps.