Curriculum

Our Multifaceted CurriculumPrimary Day’s rich and varied curriculum builds a strong foundation in the core academic subjects and is designed to develop skills, nurture talents, build confidence, and cultivate a love of learning in every child. Learning at Primary Day is multifaceted, and sharp lines between subjects often blur. In all grades, children learn from caring teachers who understand young children. With our 6:1 student:teacher ratio, we teach to each child and to the whole child, in small classes that make it possible to give every student the attention he or she needs.

Music

The Primary Day music curriculum builds on children’s natural love of music by offering a broad array of opportunities to explore sounds through singing, moving, listening, and playing instruments. We use songs, singing games, and circle dances to introduce children to basic musical concepts of rhythm, melody, tempo, and dynamics. They develop an appreciation for different kinds of music, including traditional children’s songs, folk songs, classical music, and music from a variety of cultures, styles and time periods. Singing is a vital part of the music program. Instrumental instruction follows the Orff-Schulwerk methodology and uses speech, body percussion, percussion instruments and recorder. The music program coordinates with each grade level to support the classroom thematic curriculum. The music teacher draws on her expertise as an educator and a musician, adapting a variety of proven teaching methods to individualize instruction. Throughout the school year, children have ample opportunities to showcase their talents for the entire school community, gaining self-confidence and poise by performing at assemblies, plays, grade level programs, and other school events.

World Languages

Exposure to languages broadens world views and enhances a child’s sense of curiosity about the world. At Primary Day, students are exposed to three modern languages—Mandarin Chinese, French and Spanish—beginning in Pre-Kindergarten. Each language is taught once a week. The emphasis of our program is on receptive language, or listening skills, so that children become confident and comfortable being immersed in the target language. Languages are taught through a variety of kinesthetic, visual, and auditory activities. Most units relate closely to what the children study in other subject areas. Children examine similarities and differences between the target cultures and their own. They learn songs, act out stories, and create art, all while being immersed in the target languages.