Lower School

Learning in Kindergarten through 5th Grade at Williams is grounded in developmentally-appropriate levels of rigor, engagement, and support designed to help all children grow as learners, thinkers, and creative producers. Students work with experienced teachers and specialists to engage in open-ended, authentic, and relevant learning experiences designed to help them develop the academic, social, and emotional skills they need for success in middle school and beyond.

Our Lower School students have the benefit of working with teachers who are committed to ensuring that every child is in a safe, supportive, and respectful environment. Our Lower School students and teachers begin each day with a morning meeting to set the agenda and daily goals with a focus on the qualities of good community member (e.g., respect, kindness, empathy, collaboration) and they end each day with a reflection on the day’s work and their successes and areas for growth. Throughout the day, our students work to live those classroom norms developed together, as a classroom community.

Lower School

Lower School Curriculum

Language Arts and Mathematics

Language Arts and mathematics are the core curriculum components of the Lower School program. Small group instruction, differentiated tasks based on ongoing assessment of student progress, and a range of support structures are utilized to ensure that all students are challenged and supported as they work toward achievement of worthy learning goals. Strong reading and writing instruction are dynamic, with multiple opportunities daily to explore a variety of genres in classroom and library reading.

Science and Social Studies

Students are routinely engaged in problem-finding, problem-solving, and creative endeavors that require the application and integration of knowledge and skills. Students engage in hands-on science explorations in physical, life, and earth science, and all students benefit from O.W.L. (Our Wider Learning) expeditions focused on specific inquiry questions. Our science resource teacher works across grade levels to help teachers plan engaging, authentic, and hands-on experiences in science. In addition, our 5th Grade students receive weekly in STEM enrichment with our science resource teacher.


Each week, students visit the library for a lesson and again for check-out. Interaction with the dynamic collection at Williams is a strength of our program.

Art, Physical Education, and Music

Art, physical education, and music instruction are integral components of learning in the Lower School. We believe that a compressive elementary education includes the development of the mind, body, and creative spirit. Our students are active and engaged in authentic experiences in the visual and performing arts. In physical education, the focus is on developing strong motor skills, teamwork, self-discipline, and sportsmanship.

Academic Resource

Our Lower School resource teacher works with students and teachers to support language arts and mathematics learning. The targeted support and innovative games, resources, and tools used to extend, enrich, and support students is dynamic and responsive to each child’s unique needs.

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