The Lower School offers a nurturing, yet dynamic learning environment where every learner feels like she belongs. Licensed teachers provide a hands-on, project-based curriculum, and the targeted use of interactive technology. Lower School learners move at their own pace, always experiencing the thrill of being stimulated and challenged academically. Yet, these learners remain with their same age peers so they develop deep and lasting early friendships. The nationally-recognized Oakstone Model is the brainchild of scholar / master educator Rebecca Morrison, Ph.D., and represents the culmination of decades of groundbreaking research. Graduates of the Lower School are equipped not only with superior academic foundations, but with a vital sense of social responsibility, community, and leadership.
The elementary years are an exciting time for learning, both academically and socially. Lower School classrooms at Oakstone Academy offer varied opportunities for developing academic competency and personal growth. The elementary program, beginning with full day kindergarten and extending through fifth grade, is built on an array of best practices in teaching, including:
- Hands-on experiences
- Collaborative learning
- Empirically-based direct instruction methods
- Project-based learning
- Problem solving
- Outside experiences, such as field trips and service projects
- Low student to teacher ratios (most classes have 15-22 students)
- Peer tutoring
- Academic grouping that allows students to move at the pace best suited to their needs
- The inclusion of innovative technology via interactive whiteboards, laptop computers, and ipads
Teachers and staff members in the Lower School come from a diverse variety of backgrounds and experiences. Most classrooms are led by 2 licensed teachers and an assistant. The Lower School team includes:
- Education teachers
- State-certified Reading Specialists
- Mathematics Specialists
- Licensed Intervention Specialists
- A Spanish instructor
- Both vocal and instrumental music instructors
- A certified Physical Education teacher
- A certified Art teacher
A licensed Occupational Therapist and Speech-Language Pathologist also collaborates with teachers to help students develop competency and fluency in handwriting, keyboarding, and public speaking skills.
The Lower School program has a strong emphasis on social development within the classrooms. Working to help children develop crucial academic and work habits, as well as build friendships and interpersonal skills, is in the forefront of each day’s activities. A character education program that begins in kindergarten and builds each year emphasizes the importance of respect, responsibility, caring, kindness, fairness, and citizenship in our efforts to educate the whole child.
Children in the Lower School at Oakstone Academy are valued for their individuality and challenged to meet high academic and personal standards. Parents are valued partners in the educational setting and can expect open communication from their children’s teachers.