Lower School

Grades 1-5

In Lower School, specialist teachers collaborate with our talented, loving classroom teachers to create a dynamic environment designed to engage and ignite young girls’ minds.

The hands-on curriculum teaches students invaluable lessons about problem-solving, tenacity, creativity, and cooperation. Our goal is to help each girl become a capable, confident, and caring child and a lifelong learner.

Using creative problem solving skills, St. Mary’s Lower School program is designed to help equip each student with the ability to think critically, use technology and design tools, and develop the confidence to value the wisdom and flexibility that making mistakes provides. St. Mary’s promotes individualized learning and encourages elementary students to learn in community while discovering unique ways to explore, experiment, and excel.

Weekly Chapel and on-going character education program, fondly called the Bridge to Caring, not only nurtures our students spiritually, but allows students to reach beyond themselves to discover the importance of respect, kindness, courage, thankfulness, honesty, and cooperation. These timeless values are woven into our academic curriculum on a daily basis, creating a learning environment that honors the whole child.

Hilary Davis Robinson '90
Head of Lower School
Email

Lower School Office:
Barbara Leach
(901) 537-1400
Email

Core Curriculum Subjects

  • Math
  • Reading and Language Arts
  • Science
  • Social Studies/Geography

Special Subjects

  • Art celebrates each girl’s individuality and fosters self-expression and creativity through the design process.
  • Ballet and Creative Movement fosters creative expression by immersing students in classical ballet stories through role playing, scene reenactments, and both choreographed and improvised movement.
  • The Lower School Library is a center of inquiry where information literacy skills are integrated with classroom content. Curriculum emphasizes the development of research skills, the discovery of the joy of reading, and the promotion of lifelong learning.
  • In keeping with our Episcopal tradition, Religion classes in St. Mary's Lower School explore stories from the Old and New Testaments, while encouraging respect for others' beliefs and teaching the values that unite us.
  • Spanish vocabulary and grammar are presented kinesthetically, aurally, verbally, visually, and literally to grades one through four.  Foreign language involves the learner in a technique called TPR, Total Physical Response.
  • Music uses the developmentally appropriate Orff Schulwerk approach and includes choral experiences.
  • Physical Education enhances coordination, strength, self-control, and cooperation.
  • Robotics not only creates an opportunity for students to learn how to code, but it also enhances skills in leadership, community involvement, communicating across different technology platforms, and maybe even finding a passion for STEM related subjects.