Grammar School (K4–6th Grade)

20140930_CaloA_21In the Geneva grammar school years we seek to fan the flickers of those early yearnings to learn, discover, and love. We long to develop in each child a love of learning, a love and respect for neighbor, with a sense of wonder and adventure about discovering the world around them. We desire to nurture a love of the good, true, and beautiful with a joy for living as God has called us to live. Above all, we strive to cultivate a heart for learning within our children which serves to heighten their sensitivities to the glories of God.

A lifelong love of learning develops when the earliest experiences of a child’s education are positive and rewarding. In order for these years to provide such experiences, the natural development of the student must be understood. K4 through sixth grade is called the grammar stage. Just as the study of grammar provides the foundation for understanding language, these early childhood years develop the essential building blocks necessary for more multifaceted, complex, and analytical learning that will occur in the dialectic (seventh and eighth grade) and rhetoric (ninth through twelfth grade) stages and throughout life. Curiosity abounds in a child during these grammar years—their minds want to absorb and learn information about the world past, present, and future. Singing, chanting, and much laughter can be heard emanating from the classrooms and hallways of the grammar school as students learn about the world around them through activities such as discovering the rules of phonics, listening intently to stories from history, identifying the parts of a plant, an animal, or the body, and authoring their own stories. None of these experiences would be possible if it weren’t for the committed and enthusiastic faculty members who guide and instruct the students each day.

We know that grammar school students learn best when the information is delivered through multisensory approaches. Therefore, The Geneva School is committed to a classical curriculum that is intricately woven and integrated across all subject areas. Educator and author Susan Wise Bauer wrote, “because it [classical education] uses real, living books and hands-on experimentation rather than relying on textbooks and canned presentations, classical education is a matter of exploration, of reading, thinking, and talking, and of discovery—not of rote memorization and regurgitation.”

The grammar school years at The Geneva School provide educational experiences full of wonder and growth. For example, students perform in the Three Piggy Opera, sail across the sea as Pilgrims, plant and harvest our Peter Rabbit garden, live as Egyptians in the land of the Pharaoh, emerge from the Trojan horse as Greeks, live as squires, knights, ladies in waiting, embark on a field trip to Colonial Williamsburg, and immigrate to the United States through Ellis Island, all within a loving, safe, thoughtfully designed, stimulating, yet peaceful environment conducive for children to thrive and grow.

As one Geneva mom writes:

“At Geneva, particularly in the grammar school, our children have experienced that gentle, steady movement toward the pursuit of what is good, true and beautiful. Geneva’s development of their students is thoughtful, purposeful and creative. Because of this, growth is not hurried or shoved at the children and certainly not swayed by what the world deems appropriate. True, healthy development requires insight, patience, appropriate challenges, and a community of support. This is Geneva.” ~Shelly Shafer

Come join us on the journey of learning together!