To help students become fluent in the language of their culture, the curriculum emphasizes creative writing, speech, reading, spelling, grammar, handwriting and drama. These elements are interwoven throughout the curriculum and emphasized in specific blocks.
The humanities curriculum draws on rich and diverse cultural sources, with a progression from fairy tales, fables and legends and Old Testament stories in the early grades to study of Norse mythology and the ancient cultures of India, Persia, Egypt and Greece. By the end of 8th grade, students have journeyed through Roman and Medieval history, the Renaissance, the Reformation, the age of Exploration, the Industrial Revolution and up to the present.
Zoology, botany, mineralogy, astronomy, chemistry, environmental studies, anatomy, physiology, nutrition and basic physics are all covered in the grade school science curriculum. Students begin with nature stories and experience outdoors, then are introduced to scientific concepts that promote an integrated understanding of the whole.
During the grade school years, students attain a strong number sense, basic arithmetic, fractions, geometry, algebra, graphing and ratios. Children first encounter the world of numbers through stories, musical rhythms and artistic activities, before gaining skills in abstract reasoning.
The foreign language program begins in kindergarten with two languages, French and German, chosen for their contrasting language structure and cultures. The languages are taught through songs and games in the early grades, and through grammar, reading, writing and dramatic plays in the higher grades. The goal is to open the child’s mind to the culture embodied in these different languages and to foster greater flexibility of thinking.