Stephen Olney- Grade/Classes
In kindergarten at Stephen Olney, the educational “boom” happens. Students begin making connections to everything they’re learning, and look forward to expanding their knowledge. Their excitement is contagious, and they are quick to jump into interactive workshops, group discussions, and learn through one-on-one instruction with their teachers.
Kindergarten is a thrilling time where students gain independence, learn how to be a team player, and build their confidence. The kindergarten classroom is where our young students turn into scientists, mathematicians, readers, writers, artists, and musicians – all at the same time.
A classroom of students plus one Stephen Olney educator equals endless opportunities for our youngest learners to grasp math concepts including counting, numeracy, values, and measurements as well as basic mathematical terms.
Throughout the school day, Stephen Olney kindergarten students are surrounded by math – discussing shapes, patterns, and number sequences. They start to talk about these math concepts with their peers, using terms such as “more than,” “larger than,” and “greater than,” and math skills are woven into all subject areas. Children participate in engrossing activities that make math concepts “real” to them. Numbers are introduced in ways that peak students’ interests, and our innovative educators are constantly keeping with trends that keep math lessons relevant and applicable to students’ lives.
Kindergarten English Language Arts
Chapter one: Students at Stephen Olney in kindergarten have begun noticing literature in the world around them, not only in the stories they hear as teachers read aloud. Through a combination of writing and reading routines, engaging projects, and literacy discussions, students become accustomed to using English Language Arts across disciplines.
Basic phonics, pronunciation, alphabetic structure, and understanding of story elements start to take shape as students flip through the pages of their kindergarten education. Students act out characters from books they’re reading in class, learn about letter recognition through fun games, and boost their fine motor control, as educators set the foundation for reading and writing comprehension.
Ready, set, go! Kindergarten students are always on the move, and are constantly experimenting with their surroundings. At Stephen Olney, we latch onto that drive to learn about the world, and show students the benefits of collecting data, analyzing scenarios, and making note of their findings. Though they are young, kindergarten students at Stephen Olney conduct their own research, and are excited to share that information with their peers.
Sometimes, that means they’re observing how a plant grows in the classroom. It can also mean watching objects in water to see if they float or sink, or what makes a magnet “stick.” Students make the shift in asking “why?” and start to question “how” things work.
Kindergarten Social Studies
In kindergarten classrooms at Stephen Olney, students are already becoming socially aware of their surroundings. Though they are some of the youngest learners in our school, make no mistake – they are learning about culture, paying attention to social structures, and becoming passionate about sharing their own heritage, family traditions, and stories with their classmates.
Students start to learn about historical figures and why those individuals were important to shifts in society, begin to learn about location and what a community represents: A collective of people working, learning, and living together. Students truly begin to feel a sense of belonging in their own community at Stephen Olney in kindergarten.
First-grade at Stephen Olney is a time where the cognitive and neurological development of our students blossoms. Building on the social skills they learned in pre-kindergarten and kindergarten, 1st-grade students start to understand they are part of a “bigger” school, not just their classroom they’ve come to know. Similar to taking their first steps, students enter 1st-grade with a basic understanding of literacy, math, and science, but become more confident and vigorous in their approach to subject areas.
Like learning to walk, grasping these topics takes time, but with patience, persistence and enthusiasm from Stephen Olney educators, 1st-grade students not only learn about this content, but embrace it. Students in our classrooms are encouraged to be the leaders of their learning and find answers by trial-and-error. What’s most exciting about 1st-grade at our school, you ask? Students make a break-through and find that there’s a real-world purpose for their work in school, and are excited to contribute to the Stephen Olney community.
Grade 1 Mathematics
Math in 1st-grade yields rapid growth of math skills, analyzation methods, problem-solving techniques, and general understanding of math. In 1st-grade, students are guided through not only measuring and identifying shapes, but learning about shapes by building and deconstructing them. Using innovative technology and hands-on lessons that allow students to work with tangible objects while learning about value, size, and space concepts, better establishes these math skills students will need to incorporate throughout their lives.
With the direction of our educators, students work on pattern recognition, measurements, and predictions, and use several tools including visual elements to make the math problems come to life. For example, students are taught to find solutions to problems in several ways, including drawing a picture, or using objects like blocks as counting tools to show how they found their answer. We lay the groundwork for these vital skills.
Grade 1 English Language Arts
In 1st-grade, students start to open up – through books, their minds, and expression. The phonetic wheels are always turning in the mind of a 1st-grade student, who is paying attention to sound, style, and the meaning of words. Students start to learn about how to craft a story, about personification, and how the world revolves around stories to learn about people, places, and history.
Language, students start to realize, is a powerful tool that yields mutual understanding, the sharing of ideas and important stories, and connects the dots to questions they have. With the assistance of their teachers, first-grade students at Stephen Olney start to sculpt their auditory, visual, and kinetic approaches to literature, reading comprehension, and language as a whole.
Grade 1 Science
In 1st-grade at Stephen Olney, children hit a “gold mine” in terms of scientific exploration. They’ve learned – many times literally – how digging around will lead to answers, but also more questions. They also start to see how much beauty there is in that. At a young age, students at our school are taught with a blended learning model, which pairs traditional teaching and tangible objects with personalized learning and the incorporation of technology.
We teach the scientific method, the importance of working as a team to find a collective answer, and how shared information leads to a wealth of knowledge to make more discoveries. Through hands-on work, class discussions, and individual explorations, students realize that what they find matters. First-grade students are eager to show off what they see, and we encourage that.
Grade 1 Social Studies
“You’re so old!” That’s not necessarily something educators, nor parents, want to hear, but that signals something – a child learning about time, age, and history. In 1st-grade, students begin to pick up on time references, take more responsibility for themselves in their classrooms, and follow the “rules” of their community. First-grade students at Stephen Olney become accustomed to routines, and become more self-sufficient and socially aware.
Through thoughtful and considerate conversations in class, 1st-grade students learn about diversity, about how events of the past relate to present day and the future, and start to grasp the importance of timing and how communities push for and adapt to changes. Our educators make history come alive, and promote productive conversations about why historical figures matter, and how significant historical shape societies. Using age-appropriate curriculum and relevant topics that students care about, we’re able to show students how they too can impact society.
Second-grade at Stephen Olney is a time when students hit several milestones academically and socially, and become more well-rounded learners as they tackle new challenges, a wider range of academic work, and use active thinking and research like never before. Our students grow rapidly in 2nd-grade while absorbing new curriculum across all disciplines, but also subconsciously learn about life in the meantime.
Students absorb different types of literature, are immersed in scientific experiments, and dig into the roots of math problems. They build stronger friendships with their classmates and fellow students, are eager to participate in the wider school community, and find exhilaration in their education.
Grade 2 Mathematics
Correct answers are great. Understanding what it takes to find the correct answer is better. In Stephen Olney 2nd-grade classrooms, the “how” and “why” is explained, not just the “what.” Students learn to master math while seeing the endless ways math is applicable to everyday life. Process is everything when it comes to math, and our tireless educators work with students to guide them through steps from beginning to end of math problems. Confidence is key when it comes to approaching rigorous math work and analyzing variables.
Addition and subtraction are introduced in 2nd-grade, and students start to comprehend and identify math in their surroundings – with clocks, money, traveling, and schedules. If math is a game, math concepts paired with excitement are the rules at Stephen Olney. With practice and persistence, 2nd-grade students are better prepared to handle more complex math topics come 3rd-grade. We meet students where they’re at to ensure math strategies and techniques make sense, and help build their love for math.
Grade 2 English Language Arts
Students’ days in 2nd-grade are booked. Whether they’re deconstructing a story, brainstorming ideas for a creative written piece, or asking a classmate what they thought of a book, Stephen Olney 2nd-grade students are busy being narrators, authors, book reviewers, and writers. They read aloud, boosting their confidence. Students also begin to read very independently, boosting their self-sufficiency. They spend quality time assessing stories, and in turn, become better writers themselves.
Our educators provide a blend of direction and autonomy, so students learn to navigate through literacy and English Language Arts as if it’s a game – and many times, it can be. Our teachers make sure learning about literacy is fun and interactive, and something students will enjoy working on. Students improve drastically in their public speaking skills and reading comprehension, and their responses to text are deeper.
Grade 2 Science
Science at Stephen Olney is out of this world. In 2nd-grade classrooms, students are not only learning about the natural wonders of Earth, but beyond. They learn that while the world is huge and filled with wonder, so is the universe. Beyond the sky is the limit for our students, who learn about the importance of asking “how” and “why” when experimenting and exploring. Educators at Stephen Olney inspire students to ask more questions, dig deeper, and take charge with their curiosity.
Our students are the future Jane Goodalls, Elon Musks, and Bill Gates’ of the world. We foster scientific skills at a young age to help our students prepare to lead the world with research, informative dialogue, and most importantly, the creativity and confidence to keep exploring. Second-grade students gain independence in their scientific investigations, strengthening their critical thinking and decision making. A passion for the natural world skyrockets in 2nd-grade classrooms.
Grade 2 Social Studies
When broken down into basic terms, social studies is the study of people. What does a 2nd-grade student do all day, naturally? Study people. Students are consistently curious about their peers, educators, and individuals that make up their communities. We tap into that desire to know, and show students that they can learn best about other cultures, heritages, and customs by listening and immersing themselves in multicultural learning.
Culturally relevant material that is sensitive in nature but also captivating is taught in 2nd-grade classrooms at Stephen Olney, where students learn about regions around the globe and historical turning points. Impact is a theme we teach at Stephen Olney, and it becomes more than just a vocabulary word as students begin to learn about how government and societal structures affect the daily lives.
In 3rd-grade at Stephen Olney, students know what letters and numbers truly mean. Writing and reading becomes fluent. Students immerse themselves in science, and form a deeper understanding of math concepts. Expanding their literacy knowledge, students make the shift from learning to read to reading to learn. In 3rd-grade, we watch as students grow more independent, and become free-thinkers.
Grade 3 Mathematics
Third-grade students at Stephen Olney crack the code. Many times, literally. While math becomes more complex in 3rd-grade, our educators accommodate each individual student to help them learn at their own pace. Personalized learning is important to us at Stephen Olney, and all rigorous work given to students is paired with support from educators that helps students steer their way through math courses.
Multiplication, division, place value, and fractions are all introduced to our 3rd-grade students, and our teachers embody all the necessary traits to help children through this new content: Patience, tireless energy, and commitment to student success. Through activities, group collaboration, and individual work, students strengthen their collection, interpretation, and explanation of data skills.
Grade 3 English and Language Arts
Students don’t need a bookmark to know their place in literacy – they’re all over the place, sifting through a wide array of literature ranging from news stories and poetry to fiction and non-fiction books. In 3rd-grade at Stephen Olney, students begin to stumble on their favorite genres, and make passionate connections to the text they’re reading. With a combination of assigned reading and writing with “free write” projects and self-selection of books, we promote a lifestyle of reading and writing.
Students become stronger public speakers, more independent in their book selection, and more analytical of text. Children also take on the roles of characters in these books, and better visualize the stories they are reading. They relate characters to people they know, and use personification to pull readers into the stories they pen.
Grade 3 Science
Here comes the boom. Third-grade scientists have figurative fireworks going off in their brains as they examine, collect, and clarify data. Students at Stephen Olney act as investigators, magnifying anything that interests them. They unpack information, and examine it like evidence of a case. The content students are learning show them the way things work – like electricity, light, speed, and coding.
While much of the material students are learning in 3rd-grade science is conceptual, our dedicated instructors make sure these topics are relevant in the minds of students and that the way science is taught is engaging.
Grade 3 Social Studies
“X” marks the spot. Stephen Olney 3rd-grade students explore with maps, visualizing different countries and points of interest, and see how though their spot on the globe is microscopic, their place in the global society matters. Students learn about humanities, geography, history, and government in ways that also help them learn more about “self,” and their own family celebrations and traditions.
With thoughtful literature and class projects, students form an appreciation for what it means to be a citizen of the Stephen Olney community and their hometown. Students are encouraged to ask questions about customs and origins, and their passion for our interconnected world peaks in 3rd-grade.
The 4th-grade scholastic journey sees to it that Stephen Olney students become more efficient researchers, more articulate writers, sharper thinkers, and more self-assured of their many abilities. With in-depth workshops, hands-on lessons, enriching content, and fueled conversations about science, math, digital literacy, writing, reading, and expression, students are inspired and ready to learn. Educators help mold students into future leaders, and their future starts here at Stephen Olney where students are in charge of their learning.
Grade 4 Mathematics
If learning about necessary math concepts is the problem in question, 4th-grade instruction at Stephen Olney is the solution. Our students become fluent in math, which can be considered its own language. Our educators build on the strong foundation of math skills students have already constructed from a young age at Stephen Olney, and children dig their heels into concepts being taught.
Once students reach 4th-grade at Stephen Olney, they can better self-direct themselves through their math class work, and our educators work with them to identify mistakes to learn from in their problem-solving process. At Stephen Olney, we help students steer through any struggles they have when tackling math problems and use them as teaching opportunities that help students continue to take the lead of their education.
Grade 4 English Language Arts
Call it shelf awareness. Fourth-grade students at Stephen Olney make mental notes that stories are constantly surrounding them. Stories exist when friends talk on the playground, during group discussions in the classroom, at the grocery store when running into acquaintances, while reading books, and asking questions like, “why?”
All of these daily routines cultivate strong language and communication skills, and students learn through essay writing, reading more complex literature, and answering prompts with more detail. Students sculpt their creativity in 4th-grade, and make real-world connections with the stories they read and share in class. At Stephen Olney, students take hold of their imaginations.
Grade 4 Science
What’s the wingspan of a 4th-grader? Your child might just come home from school telling you this information, and asking to measure your wingspan. Learning about science in Stephen Olney classrooms helps students take flight into the scientific method to a new degree – they’re experimenting and analyzing more than ever before, and the research they compile becomes more detail-oriented.
Students start to look at all the objects around them in terms of “how they work,” and “what makes it go.” At Stephen Olney, our teachers embody what it means to be a scientist: They are always asking students how they came up with their answers, what data they have to back up their work, what they’ll try next, and stay curious. We know that curiosity is contagious, and fostering wonderment in the classroom benefits students well outside the classroom walls.
Grade 4 Social Studies
Facts matter. So do questions. In 4th-grade at Stephen Olney, students better understand what service to community means, how government structures are organized, and the role social responsibility plays in societies around the globe. Fourth-grade students pair research with visual materials and productive dialogue to better understand what’s behind a timeline, see from different perspectives, and learn about more than just the titles of historical documents “Constitution” or “Declaration of Independence.”
Students grow an appreciation and respect for multiculturalism and how differences shape the globe. They learn with fascinating “journeys through time” materials that provoke intellectual thoughts, constructive discussions, and deeper knowledge of what history means. Most importantly, our students are generating ideas to make the world a better place by learning from history and striving for a better future.
In their final year at Stephen Olney, students have developed and continue to strengthen their love of learning, reading, experimenting, and solving. They have also grown dramatically socially, emotionally, and academically. As the “leaders of the school,” they know what it means to be a contributing member of the Stephen Olney community, and see how much they’ve learned throughout their years in elementary school. They take pride in their education.
Our educators ensure our students are well-prepared for their middle school experience, by helping them polish their varied skill sets, further define their articulation, better communicate and interact with their peers, and hone in on their passions. The road to success has been paved in elementary school, and we know our students will continue to construct that road as they move forward in their education and life.
Grade 5 Mathematics
The odds are in 5th-grade students’ favor at Stephen Olney, where educators guide them through coding, calculating, analyzing statistics, using deductive reasoning, and making their way through complex equations. Our teachers prove to students why these math lessons and concepts matter, and how they are an integral part of the world around them. We show students that math is needed for everything from construction to planning a family party, where measuring, making purchases, and figuring in quantities is essential.
In preparation for middle school math, our students learn how to solve variables, identify how errors happened and how to correct them when figuring out math problems, and truly comprehend the subject itself.
Grade 5 English Language Arts
Students in 5th-grade at Stephen Olney look at literature as both an art and science – they can break down literature puzzles and deconstruct stories and their meanings, and appreciate stories like they do with art. Their level of personal expression shifts in 5th-grade, where they dive deeper into their own writing styles, preferred reading materials, and presentation skills. They’ve not only been able to identify the areas they need to review and edit of their own written works, but look forward to improving their writing before sharing with their classmates and teachers.
Students have expanded their vocabulary and understanding of the power of words dramatically by 5th-grade, and are thrilled to learn new phrases, terms, and vocabulary they can share in their writing and in conversations. Don’t be surprised if your child comes home from school blurting out several new words and what they mean, or find ways to incorporate new and exciting vocabulary into their routine.
Grade 5 Science
Theory: Stephen Olney 5th-grade students expand their scientific understanding and admiration for the natural world.
Supporting evidence: Students ask more inquisitive questions, show valid research and walk educators through how they found their responses to scientific prompts. They provide examples for how they made connections between variables, and specify what their findings mean and why they are significant. They are proud to be “junior stewards” of science.
Hypothesis: Fifth-grade students at Stephen Olney are now more versed in new subject areas, including ecology, geology, astronomy, and biology. They share their love for science and their surroundings with their peers, families, and educators, and continue to ask questions about “the way things work” to continue learning.
Grade 5 Social Studies
The globe means the world to 5th-grade students at Stephen Olney. Our students learn to value the lessons of the past, but also begin to see how their choices and role as community members have an impact on the future. Using age-appropriate curriculum and thoughtful ways of presenting content, educators teach students about social movements and serious moments in history that shaped current day society.
With a blend of hands-on projects, research work, group assignments, and work that requires students to work diligently and independently, 5th-grade students at Stephen Olney grow in their compassion and understanding for others with different socioeconomic and cultural backgrounds. At our school, we’re not only teaching students about Social Studies and history, we’re molding more well-rounded individuals by providing eye-opening materials and instruction.
Health & Physical Education
The overall health and wellbeing of all of our students is first and foremost at Stephen Olney Elementary. Because of this, we offer a robust physical and health education program that promotes safe and healthy physical and mental habits. Sportsmanship and teamwork yield victories at our school. Our program establishes a welcome and respectful atmosphere
The Stephen Olney physical and health education programs offer a welcoming, safe, nurturing, and respectful atmosphere for all students to gain understanding of healthy habits in an interactive and fun way.
Music at Stephen Olney Elementary is jam-packed. As pre-kindergarten students, children are encouraged to sing along, associate routines with music, and dance to the beat. That doesn’t change as they progress through their musical education at our school, but their knowledge of how to create music and its possibilities does – students learn to hold a tune, harmonize with their classmates, perform for an audience for the first time, and see the tremendous value of music as a shared experience.
As they advance through Stephen Olney, children start to see their own potential and talents, and their confidence is built to share those musical gifts with others. Music theory, concepts, and the structure of a song is taught to our students, who take that knowledge and run with it – or dance with it, or sing about it, or perform it.
When we tell students at Stephen Olney Elementary to draw, paint, sculpt, and build, they get the picture. From a young age, our students are encouraged to get out of their comfort zone and create work that is inspiring to them but also presents a little bit of a challenge. We show students that uniqueness is a gift, and art class is a time to learn various art forms, about artistic geniuses, and their own styles.
Of course, art is not only taught in the traditional art class model, but our art instructor provides a stimulating and exhilarating environment for students to create in. Whether students are getting their hands messy with paint, sticking decals to a creation they’ve made, drawing using different techniques, or learning about different mediums, students are creating their own artistic pallet and the encouragement from our educators colors their world.