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Children's School

Elementary School

Here's what makes our K-5 lab school special:

  • Highly-qualified Head Teachers and dedicated student teachers
  • Small classes with a target size of 20 students
  • Thematic, project-based learning that fosters a sense of inquiry
  • Integrated curriculum with math, language arts, science, visual art, music and movement, and physical education, all with a strong social-emotional component
  • Strong parent involvement
  • Spanish, art, music, and PE once a week 
  • iPads utilized as teaching tools in 2nd-5th grade
  • After school care until 5:45 pm daily, including a variety of enrichment options, such as cooking, chess, dance, or drama

For the 2014-15 school year, we will have separate straight-grade classrooms, Kindergarten and First Grade, as well as two mixed-grade classrooms, 2/3 and 4/5. 

Committed to the highest standards while avoiding standardization, our strong academic curriculum is aligned with the frameworks of the State of California. A variety of assessment methods are infused into the teaching program and parents receive regular progress reports.

Why K-5?

In our Elementary School, we focus on the crucial primary years of Kindergarten through 5th grade. Here, children are still children: Imaginative play and read-aloud haven't disappeared, students get individual attention and time to develop a love of learning, and recess is full of fun and games for all ages to enjoy together. Our 4th and 5th graders have the opportunity to be the "big kids on campus," to take on leadership roles and mentor younger students, without feeling the need to act like teenagers before their time. For example, in 2013, the 4/5 classroom started their own entrepreneurial business venture, called the "Happy Eating Place," where the students plan, bake, and sell healthy snacks to raise money for the Alameda County Community Food Bank. (Read more about it in this Edutopia blog.) Our graduates leave prepared for the academic and social challenges of the best middle schools in the Bay Area.

Why multi-age classrooms?

Our straight grade and mixed-grade classrooms both serve students of different ages and with a broad range of skills. In multi-age classrooms, children learn to appreciate their own increasing competencies and they develop a strong sense of community. As psychologist Lev Vgotsky describes in his theory about the "Zone of Proximal Development," children working in collaboration with more capable peers are able to learn at a higher level. In multi-age classrooms, students have ex¬panded opportunities to be both leaders and followers, to learn from and to teach one another.

Frequently Asked Questions about the Elementary School

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Contact Information

P: 510.430.2118
F: 510.430.3223
E: children@mills.edu

Last Updated: 8/11/14