The Priory Lower School offers many opportunities for students to develop their potential in a variety of areas. Girls acquire the building blocks of literacy through listening, speaking, reading, and writing. They will have a fundamental understanding of number sense, parts and wholes, math terminology, and how integers relate to one another. They test scientific methods through experiments that put them in touch with the living and physical world. Our social studies program is a vehicle for students to gain insights into our local and global communities.
Beginning in kindergarten, girls are actively engaged in learning Hawaiian language, culture, and values through direct instruction, games, activities, songs, and movement. The girls’ vivid imaginations and creativity are nurtured in art, drama, and music classes. In physical education the girls develop their physical, cognitive, and social competencies through movement exploration, skill development, individual and group game play.
- Language Arts
- The Engineering Design Process (EDP)
- Social Studies
- Health & Wellness
- Library, Information, and Technology (L.I.T.) Program
- Music and Movement
- Religious Studies
- Visual Arts
Our girls enjoy a developmentally appropriate, thoughtful language arts curriculum that focuses on all aspects of communication.The knowledge and skills they acquire build from grade to grade.Reading, writing, speaking, and listening well provides them with the means to explore new interests and make sense of our wonderful world.Using these skills in all of our academic subjects gives meaning and purpose to what students learn in language arts.They have ample opportunities to express themselves creatively, accurately, and effectively.
Our girls build a strong foundation in mathematics through the Singapore Math curriculum. The curriculum introduces math concepts (counting, decimals, equations and expressions, etc.) that progress from concrete to pictorial to abstract levels and focuses on mastering the fundamental concepts and skills necessary to engage in higher-level mathematics.Through multisensory activities, our students develop a solid understanding of basic mathematical concepts and the relationships among them.They develop strong number sense, mental-math skills, and a deep understanding of place-value.Students learn strategies such as model drawing, which helps them visualize word problems as well as organize information and logically solve problems.Persistence, flexibility, and reflection about learning are emphasized throughout our math curriculum.Online tools and apps enhance student learning and engagement. Students are able to apply what they learned in math class to other subjects. By the end of our lower school program, our girls are equipped with the knowledge, skills, and attitudes necessary for success in higher-level mathematics. They also see the relevance of math as a tool for problem solving in their everyday lives.
The math curriculum follows a logical progression that includes the topics below:
- Whole numbers
- Addition, subtraction, multiplication and division of whole numbers
- Mental-math strategies
- Fractions, decimals, money
- Length, weight, mass, and capacity
- Perimeter, area, and volume
- Word problems
- Data analysis and probability
Our science curriculum encourages the natural sense of wonder and curiosity that children have about the world. They explore various concepts and skills in the major disciplines of physical sciences, earth and space sciences, and engineering, technology, and applications of science. By engaging in hands-on exploration, science is fun, exciting, and inspirational at The Priory.Students are also guided through the steps of the Engineering Design Process (EDP) to problem solve with tangible results.They appreciate that solutions to real-life issues take trial and error and persistence. By the time they move on to middle school, they are poised to enjoy and explore more complex phenomena in the major science disciplines and to investigate the world as scientists.
- Ask questions
- Define the problem
- Conduct background research
- Specify requirements
- Brainstorm solutions
- Choose the best solution
- Do development work
- Build a prototype
- Test and redesign
- Develop an appreciation and sense of responsibility for our environment and contribute to its protection
- Use appropriate technology to aid in the investigation of the natural world
The Engineering Design Process (EDP) challenges students to use critical thinking skills to solve complex and realistic problems.Students learn to value the process of asking questions, designing solutions, testing them out, and going back to the drawing board to improve the product even further.EDP is implemented into various subject areas including our gardening program.
The social studies curriculum teaches our students to become good citizens, make good decisions about the public good, be aware of the world around them, and become leaders in a culturally diverse and interdependent world. Our students are taught to embrace a commitment to democratic values, appreciate diversity and the inclusion of all, and be involved in civic issues. Queen Emma’s vision is reflected in our students’ commitment to serve their community.At The Priory, the community is the classroom; field trips and guest speakers make our curriculum real and relevant for our girls. By the end of their Lower School years, our students are poised to think deeply about the world they live in. They are oriented towards civic engagement and service to their communities, nation, and the world.
- Develop an understanding of who they are, how they are unique, and how they are shaped by the groups to which they belong
- Develop an understanding and appreciation of the similarities and differences among cultural groups
- Develop an understanding of and learn from events of the past
- Look at issues and events from different viewpoints and articulate those viewpoints
- Gather information from different sources to defend multiple viewpoints
- Learn geographic concepts and skills through the basic use of maps, globes, and other geographic tools
- Develop an understanding and appreciation of how different groups and individuals interact with each other and how they work together to solve conflicts and misunderstandings
- Become aware of their rights and responsibilities at home, at school, and as citizens of our country and world, and put this awareness into practice by participating in setting and discussing classroom rules
- Learn how something that happens in one part of the world affects another part of the world
- Learn about need versus want and the basics of supply and demand
- Contribute to making our community a better place through service
Health and wellness encompass both physical and social-emotional dimensions and provide the foundations for happy, smart, thriving children. E Mālama I Ke Kino (Take Care of Your Body) fosters the development of a healthy mind, body, and spirit of our keiki through a holistic approach.
The Library has a collection of more than 18,000 books, including fiction, nonfiction, and periodicals for students and their teachers. All classes from kindergarten to fifth grade have a formal library lesson once each week when students can listen to stories, browse and check out books, and receive instruction on information-seeking skills. The librarian encourages students to visit the library throughout any school day, whether for resources in conjunction with classes or to find a book to read for pleasure.The library curriculum is developmentally appropriate for each grade level, written to complement the lessons of social studies, language arts, and science. In the use of the library, teachers and the librarian focus on developing a love for books and building a solid foundation in research skills.
Our students are introduced to technology in kindergarten. The kindergarten through grade 2 have a mobile iPad cart, where each student is able to work individually on an iPad.These classes also have a mobile computer cart that allows for a 1:1 ratio of computers to students as well. Students in these classes are able to work creatively with both the iPads and computers to create visual projects as well as doing basic Internet research.
Our grade 3 & 4 students also share a mobile computer cart, where they learn to make PowerPoint presentations, iMovies, and work on their typing skills.These classes are also able to use class sets of iPads for reading as well as apps for science, math, and social science.
Our fifth grade students are part of the 1:1 program that exists for grades 5 - 12. Each student is required to purchase an Apple computer. The curriculum is structured so students will learn a basic computer skills and a variety of programs such as Word, PowerPoint, and Google Apps. Internet safety and computer ethics are discussed with the students throughout the year. Using different computer programs and applications fosters skills in problem solving, critical thinking, and creativity.
Our girls are active music makers! The music curriculum reflects the diverse repertoire of classical, spiritual, and folk music from many traditions as well as the Hawaiian heritage of The Priory. The Hawaiian language is expressed in song and hula, culminating in the annual May Day program. The classroom environment offers an enriched learning environment and opportunities for positive social interaction with peers. Throughout the year, the girls showcase what they have learned by performing in assemblies. Under the guidance of their teachers, students are able to deepen their understanding of process and performance and develop their imagination, creativity, self-expression, and communication skills.
In the Episcopal tradition, St. Andrew’s values the religious beliefs of all persons.
- Are expected to participate fully in all school activities - class, special subjects, programs - that take place during the school day regardless of religious affiliation.
- Must attend Chapel services.
- Will study the stories and lessons of the Old and New Testament as a specialty subject.
In the Lower School studio setting, children learn about the creative process through careful construction, discussion, and exhibition of their work. Drawing, painting, ceramics, fiber arts, printing and 3d art is explored through age appropriate projects. We have great fun problem solving while using different mediums, and show respect and appreciation for our own work and the work of others. Students create while increasing their listening and fine motor skills, bringing their unique vision to life!