Lower School Curriculum (Grades K4-5)
The StoneBridge Lower School consists of preschool through fifth grade. The primary grades have the goal of encouraging and enriching the natural development of learning while building basic academic skills.
The kindergarten program contains two levels, the four-year-old pre-primer class, and the five-year-old primer class. Kindergarten provides the initial step of formal schooling and thus becomes a vital instrument in the character development of the student beyond the home. Academic and developmental needs are integrated into all the kindergarten activities producing a holistic approach that meets the spiritual, mental, emotional, and physical needs of each child. The seeds of academic mastery are planted through the introduction of an intensive phonics program, literature classics and poetry, geography, history, science, French and the arts. Introduction of these subjects produces a love of learning at an early age.
Grades first through fifth build on the kindergarten experience. The seeds planted in kindergarten take root, producing Christian character and qualities conducive to successful learning--organization and beginning study skills, accountability for classroom behavior, responsibility, diligence, industry, faithfulness, politeness, and good manners. Students learn academic skills in the areas of reading, writing, and arithmetic. Students learn to reason and think reflectively.
The Bible is taught as the inspired Word of God and forms the foundation of every subject. Students are encouraged to develop a personal relationship with Christ while internalizing Biblical principles taught throughout the day. Portions of scripture are memorized regularly at each grade level. The Principle Approach education inspires a deeper understanding of God, His Word and a Biblical worldview as students reason and relate biblical truths in every subject.
StoneBridge uses a Biblical historic approach to teaching reading applied in an innovative way. Known as the Bible as Reader program, the Bible is used as the reader at each grade level. The components of reading are taught daily: phonics, vocabulary, oral reading fluency, comprehension and reasoning and writing. An individualized supplemental reading program meets the needs of each student at his or her independent reading level. Literature classics and poetry are read aloud regularly. The sounds of language and the lyrical rhythms and imagery conveyed through this method enhance the child's vocabulary and writing ability and style.
The teaching of English is comprised of orthography, grammar, syntax and composition. Orthography, taught through an analytical word sort method, serves as a means for strengthening and advancing etymological understanding of words so students can read and write more fluently. Phonetics, basic spelling rules, ad grammar are mastered. Word studies incorporated in every subject build vocabulary and etymology skills. Through composition, students learn how to organize and express their thoughts. Students learn to clothe their ideas with words, think reflectively, and master basic English grammar. Book reviews begin in second grade.
Literature is taught to elevate the student's mind and heart to love his literary heritage of Christian values. Literature fosters a love of and appreciation for the great classics. The student's imagination and creative potential are expanded as he delights in the great classics. Studying the classics helps develop critical thinking skills and provides a model and inspiration for thinking and writing. Click below to learn more about our Reading Program.
A biblical and a providential view of God, man, and government is introduced. The importance of each individual in God's plan is recognized as major events, beginning with creation, are taught. Each grade level focuses on particular occurrences and individuals building a scope and sequence of historical events.
The purpose of teaching Geography is to help the student gain a sense of dominion over his world. Basic geography skills are introduced including the use of maps and globes.
The mathematics curriculum is designed to prepare our students for their role in becoming our nation's future leaders and fulfilling God's cultural mandate found in Genesis 1:28. We recognize that mathematics plays a vital role in our world today and thus we endeavor to prepare our students for the challenges they will face in that realm. Through our curriculum, students grow closer to our Creator, the Author of Mathematics. They also become precise thinkers that can reason from cause to effect in real-life problem situations, and they learn to use mathematics in everyday life. Students begin arithmetic in kindergarten using manipulatives to internalize the concepts of quantity, numeration, and problem solving. In first through fifth grades, the MacMillan/McGraw-Hill mathematics series serves the mastery of basic arithmetic skills. These courses provide opportunities for students to build understanding of mathematical concepts and also provide ample time to practice and master important skills. Most importantly, all concepts are taught and practiced within a strong problem-solving environment ensuring that students become life problem-solvers.
Students learn about God's character as revealed throughout natural creation and through the laws that govern it. The various disciplines of science are taught emphasizing hands-on activities and methods of observation and research. Individuals who contributed to the development of science are also studied.
The teaching of French at an early age establishes a pattern of language learning and develops an aptitude for future language study. Students gain insight into the individuality and unique characteristics of the French people and their culture. In fourth and fifth grade, Latin is introduced.
All lower school students participate in a yearly classroom Speech Meet, and are also encouraged to memorize and recite Bible passages for our annual Tyndale Bible Award competition.
The goal of the primary art curriculum is to lay a firm foundation for the development of the creative potential within each individual. Students are exposed to the great masters and their masterpieces. A wide range of media is used in the instruction of basic art techniques.
Through a variety of activities, students experience and appreciate many facets of music. Music writing and theory, recognition of instruments, great composers, and movement with song are all introduced. Students have the opportunity to perform in school events through the year.
P.E. classes are designed to strengthen the student's perceptual-motor skills. Physical activities are planned to meet the varying developmental needs within the primary grades. An interest in sports is fostered. Students are also permitted to participate in basketball and soccer junior athletics programs as early as K4.