Grammar school continues to reinforce the important academic and social skills emphasized in the primary school:
- quality written work completed in a timely manner
- legible penmanship and accurate spelling
- speed and accuracy in arithmetic
- reading comprehension and vocabulary acquisition
- memorization of poetry and Scripture
- appropriate classroom behavior
- discipline and self-control
- good manners and respect for adults and classmates
Students learn from well-designed materials, high quality content, and teacher-directed lessons. Classrooms are quiet, disciplined, and orderly, with minimal visual distractions. Students are motivated to work and learn because they are led by knowledgeable, enthusiastic teachers. Students work hard and are rewarded every day with breaks for physical exercise, music, drawing, art, and review games. Students in grades 3-6 are carefully prepared for the reading of classic literature and history, and for advanced math and science which begin in the Upper School in grade 7.
For the traditional curriculum:
- For English, spelling, and math, the Mennonite publisher, Rod and Staff, produces traditional textbooks that provide uncluttered pages and clear instructions.
- The science curriculum develops the observational skills that lie at the heart of the scientific endeavor. Students study constellations, the solar system, invertebrates, insects, vertebrates, birds, plants, and tree identification.
- The very best in English literature and poetry are taught in depth using Memoria Press study guides.
- In American/Modern Studies students focus on states, capitals, and world geography in grades 3-5, and American history in grade 6.
For the classical curriculum:
- Latin – Students memorize the complete Latin grammar and a Latin vocabulary of about 800 words.
- Classical Studies – Students study Greek myths and Greek, Roman, and Medieval history.
- Christian Studies – Students learn all major Bible stories and memorize more than ninety of the most memorable and poetic verses of the King James Bible.
Classwork: All lessons are teacher directed. Students are given ample time to complete classroom assignments, which are carefully monitored so that students learn to do quality written work in a timely fashion.
Composition: Students write and illustrate one in-class composition each week in their Composition and Sketch Book, which is sent home at the end of the year. During the Spring Term students also write one multi-page report in class.
Homework: All material is covered carefully in class. Students who are attentive and work diligently in class should have no more than 30-45 minutes of homework each night and 2-3 hours on Mondays.
One drill set of math problems, five assignments/week, (approximately 15 minutes each)
B) Study for exams
1. Spelling test each Friday (20 words)
2. Latin vocab test each Friday (10 words)
3. One or two exams each week, in subject areas above. Exams usually cover five lessons in each subject. Students are provided with a study guide, but exam material is reviewed in class and should require minimum study at home. Preparation for each exam often includes a class game, such as a spelling bee, jeopardy, or memory baseball.
1) Reading/rereading literature or classical studies texts
2) Reading for pleasure
D) Latin vocabulary flash cards. Latin vocabulary is cumulative and must be reviewed continuously throughout the year.