CURRICULUM & METHODS
Stokes School became authorized to offer the Primary Years Program (PYP) in June 2020. Through the PYP framework, we help students develop the intellectual, personal, and social emotional skills to live, learn, and work in a globalized world. We aim for our students to become responsible members of a global community by striving to be knowledgeable and principled inquirers, thinkers, communicators and risk-takers who are caring, open-minded, balanced, and reflective.
PRIMARY YEARS PROGRAMME
In kindergarten through 5th grade, we currently use an approach of Balanced Literacy to teach the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) for Language Arts, including Writer’s Workshop in all languages and Words their Way for word study. Our K-5 mathematics curriculum is called "Investigations," where students develop deep conceptual understanding of the CCSS and engage in the CCSS Mathematical Practices. Our transdisciplinary units of inquiry are designed around the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) and the DC Standards of Teaching and Learning for Social Studies for K-5th grade.
Through the Units of Inquiry, students in the Pre-K classes participate in learning experiences that are appropriate for their age and abilities. Daily schedules include activities that support fine and gross motor skills, language development, and social emotional growth. Through play and hands-on discovery, students learn Math, Science and Social Studies’ concepts. Students at Stokes experience a supportive and nurturing environment, they are encouraged to socialize, cooperate and learn how to solve problems. In Pre-K, Stokes students receive instruction in the target language 90 % of the time, and English 10 % of the time, both in small group instruction.
All lessons have both content and language objectives. Scholars at Stokes School develop a balanced bilingual ability. The learning experiences are designed to develop:
Communication skills: interpretive, interpersonal, and presentational.
Intercultural communication skills: investigation and interaction
At Stokes School, we have a diverse group of native target language teachers who bring their culture into the classroom. In 5th grade students have the opportunity to apply their communication skills while traveling to Panama or Martinique.
For more information on these tours, visit our International Study Tour page.
Scholars learn the value of community stewardship by identifying an issue or need from their trimester units of study and developing a solution. Scholars in each grade apply their classroom knowledge to real life problem solving. Past service learning projects include testing water for lead, establishing bird habitats, developing an erosion mitigation plan for the Stokes playground, and raising money for disaster relief.
Stokes School appreciates that some of the most memorable learning takes place beyond the classroom. Each trimester, every grade level travels on field trips that further enhance the class’s study of its unit of study. In addition to visiting local D.C. attractions, such as the National Zoo and Smithsonian Museums, certain grade levels go on annual trips to locations beyond D.C. Fourth grade scholars visit Hard Bargain Farm, where they have the opportunity to learn about farm life, see where their food comes from, and perform various farm chores, such as milking a cow.
BEYOND THE CLASSROOM
In addition to the core curriculum subjects such as math, science, reading, and social studies, students in every grade level participate in Music and Art classes.