Junior kindergarten brings our youngest learners into a world of discovery and play-based education to promote personal, social, emotional, and academic growth in the year prior to kindergarten. In a loving and nurturing environment, students will embark on a journey to explore foundational reading and writing skills. With read alouds, interactive centers, and small group instruction, students will advance from learning their ABC’s to becoming beginning readers. They will also develop their number recognition, counting skills, and hands-on number interactions to build an understanding mathematical concepts. The students will inquire into a variety of science and social studies topics including making responsible choices to help themselves and others, recognizing and making patterns in various systems, exploring their personal pasts and unique qualities, and interacting outdoors to observe and appreciate nature. Taking full advantage of our beautiful 100-acre campus, we know that junior kindergarten students thrive when they play and learn outdoors!
Starting kindergarten is an important milestone for every child. Kindergarten is a time to explore, learn, and develop the skills necessary to lay the foundation for a love of learning and future success. Kindergarten students explore a variety of topics in reading, math, social studies, science, and social emotional skills. Students will learn letters, sounds, sight words, beginning reading skills, and how to be a writer. Through whole class read alouds, small group skill building, games, and personal reading and writing time, kindergarten students are embraced by a world of language arts. They will also learn patterns, counting to 100, graphing, and basic addition and subtraction. The kindergarten experience puts great emphasis into learning to be independent, respectful, empathetic, and a problem-solver. Learning is designed to be child-centered and engaging, such as going on gingerbread man hunts to learn about mapping, learning about simple machines by building leprechaun traps, exploring living things by hatching baby chicks and working in the outdoor garden. At Kingsbury, we value the power of play, inquiry, and discovery. We believe that play-based, hands-on learning is at the core of early childhood education!
Students are welcomed into first grade with the invitation to learn and grow through the power of exploration, inquiry, and the development of their social and emotional skills. In first grade, we believe wholeheartedly that providing an environment that is safe, nurturing, supports cooperation, and invites the sharing of ideas is essential to teaching the whole child. First grade students enjoy a literacy-rich education with opportunities to become successful readers and develop a love of reading. Shared reading, reading groups, explicit phonics instruction, and a variety of creative writing opportunities provides students with a balanced literacy experience. First grade students will also learn critical math skills including addition and subtraction within 20, whole number relationships, place value, and reasoning with geometric shapes. We believe in giving students more than one way to solve a math problem and finding the best tools and strategies to match a student’s individual approach to problem-solving. Social studies and science curriculum engages students to be active learners and explorers through various IB units of study, such as communities, family, fairy tales, plants, and light and sound. At Kingsbury, first grade students thrive in an educational setting that promotes the participation in cooperative learning and the development of global, caring citizens.
The second grade team strives to provide a fun, engaging, and rigorous experience for each individual student. Second grade students spend time in our outdoor classroom, bringing learning experiences outside the confines of a traditional classroom setting. Through inquiry-based activities, students are able to be curious and ask questions about the world around them. Students will explore a variety of topics and concepts through the PYP units of inquiry. When studying the science unit on matter, students will explore how matter changes with many hands on experiments. They will step back in time to learn about the past by visiting a one-room schoolhouse. During the unit entitled “The Power of One,” student will research different people who have created change in the world and participate in a living wax museum. Second graders will also have the opportunity to be entrepreneurs and start a class business after learning about advertising and different markets around the world. Students continue to grow as readers and writers by expanding their comprehension, vocabulary, and utilization of the writing process. Math instruction explores topics including addition and subtraction within 1,000, measurement, telling time, and problem-solving using coins. Second grade is a year of highly visible progress in social, emotional, and academic areas. It is a year of making friendships and lasting memories!
Third grade is a year that bridges students from early elementary to upper elementary. It’s a time for students to discover more about their personal learning styles and take more ownership of their learning. Third grade students are enriched with a language arts curriculum that explores both narrative and informational texts, expanded writing structures and paragraphs, and making predictions or drawing conclusions from a text with evidence. Third graders grow as mathematicians as they explore interpreting fractions, measuring area, and building a conceptual understanding of multiplication, and recognizing basic multiplication facts. The PYP units of inquiry generate a variety of engaging activities, such as a “book tasting” event to introduce students to the wide variety of genres and a hands-on project conducting bird research along with the special bird walk day. At Kingsbury, we love to incorporate outdoor learning into our day. Third grade students head out to the pond to search for frogs as a way to investigate the life cycles of plants and animals. They also set up a campfire near the outdoor classroom as a fun way to retell legends during the unit of inquiry on indigenous people. By celebrating the unique qualities every student brings into the classroom and harnessing their curiosities, third graders experience a year full of personal growth and academic success.
Fourth grade brings students an opportunity to explore a wide variety of concepts throughout the subject areas and work to reach their personal learning goals. The students kick off the year diving into the study of the federal government and exploring other types of government around the world. The next unit of study focuses on rocks and landforms, with opportunities to construct a working model of how the earth changes over time. Additional units of inquiry provide students with opportunities to explore the differences and similarities of the US regions, learn about Michigan history, and investigate populations around the world. Students learn all about energy and the importance of science in various industries. With a unit focusing on creative expression, students acquire knowledge on types of poetry, poets, and explore their own creativity. Fourth grade students enhance their research and writing skills by investigating topics of their interest and polishing their skills through the writing process. As mathematicians, fourth grade students strengthen their problem-solving skills and critical thinking skills with studies on multi-digit multiplication, division, equivalent fractions, and geometric angles. Literacy instruction provides students with opportunities to dive deeper into comprehension through book discussions, advanced vocabulary, and shared perspectives. The fourth grade year at Kingsbury offers students with many hands-on projects and student-led inquiry to encourage students to learn and grow through collaboration and individual innovation.
Fifth grade marks the end of the elementary experience for students at Kingsbury. As more independent thinkers, students explore the curriculum with greater self-motivation, open-mindedness, and embrace a global perspective. Students have the exciting opportunity to participate in the PYP exhibition. Exhibition invites students to take all their PYP experiences and apply it to a final project by picking an important global issue of their choice, researching it in depth, and then presenting it to the community. Fifth grade students enrich their literacy skills by analyzing text structures and actively participating in literacy discussions, making inferences, and sharing interpretations. As writers, students will use advanced techniques to produce clear and cohesive pieces that are well-developed and show personal style. Math instruction dives deeper into decimals and fractions by using them to compute with all four operations. Fifth graders also strengthen their abilities in multiplying and dividing whole numbers, converting measurements, working with coordinate planes, and using 2D and 3D shapes to gain an understanding of surface area and volume. During PYP units of inquiry, students explore science and social students concepts such as matter, the different ‘spheres’ of the earth and how they interact with one another, celestial bodies, colonial America, and the American Revolution. With a hands-on project, the students build a marble raceway to experience the engineering process first hand. Fifth grade marks a milestone of completing elementary while preparing for middle school. We value a curriculum that allows students to build their individuality, promotes responsible citizenship, and sparks a life-long love of learning.