Integrating the Elementary Curriculum

The Earth School in New York City designs classroom studies to address children’s concerns and curiosity at every age, and to grow more complex as their questions and ability to understand information changes. The curriculum centers around two year social studies themes that relate directly to students own environment and to the interdependence of people. By investigating a topic deeply, children practice skills from across the curriculum. And rather than a confusing, fragmented course of study in which each grade level is disconnected from the others, the curriculum sets the work of students in a steady progression as follows:

Pre-Kindergarten and Kindergarten: The world of the child: This includes “me in a classroom” “me in the school” and “me in the neighborhood”.

First and Second Grades: the Child in the City: Children may investigate playgrounds, Central Park, bridges, factories, zoos, produce markets, housing, or the South Street Seaport.

Third and Fourth Grades: Manhattan Island Long Ago. Children research the history and environment of the Lenape people, who were native to the region, and of the settlement of New Amsterdam.

Fifth and Sixth Grades: Coming to Freedom and Justice in America. Ten and eleven year olds research the colonial period and the Bill of Rights the Reconstruction era and civil rights, or immigration from other nati