Children love to learn. We provide a challenging atmosphere where students are excited about learning. In keeping with the progressive underpinnings of our school, emphasis is placed on the intellectual, creative, social, spiritual, and physical development of the whole child. We respect different development stages and honor the process of moving from one to another, meeting each child “at his/her level.”
FCS emphasizes hands-on learning with materials, based on understandings of how students best acquire information and build on their innate curiosity. Broad units such as the Chesapeake Bay, Underground Railroad, Colonial America, Immigration, and the Constitution offer opportunities for exploration of the literature, art, science, history, and music relating to them. Themes unify several weeks’ work in vocabulary, math, and writing, so that students can see relationships among different areas of learning, and develop a holistic understanding of the inter-relatedness and relevance of the topics they are learning.
In grades 1-4, students are in multi-age classrooms to provide an opportunity to meet social as well as academic needs. Just as academic readiness varies among individuals, social needs vary from year to year. In most cases, students stay in the same classroom, with the same teacher, for two years, which provides greater continuity and security for the child. Not only will the child better understand the expectations of the teacher, but he or she will also have the opportunity and learning experience of being both to be the younger and older child among peers. This two-year progression allows the student to learn how to deal with older children (as well as to gain possible role models), and how to be a leader of younger children. Children in kindergarten, and grades five through eight, are taught in single-grade groupings, as befits their academic and developmental needs.