The Macmillan Treasures Reading/Language Arts program is our core program. Phonics and phonemic awareness is learned and reviewed in a structured, sequential, and cumulative manner as supported by the most recent research. Additional instruction is provided by guided reading activities which offer a wealth of high quality literature to engage learners. Reading development includes literal and inferential comprehension, the use of figurative language, an understanding of a variety of genre, and vocabulary development. Our writing program encourages students to gain an understanding and appreciation to communicate effectively through written and spoken language. Writing Workshop teaches children to work through the different stages of the writing process: prewriting, drafting, and editing leading to the published work. Throughout this process, students focus on traits of writing: ideas, organization, sentence fluency, conventions, and voice.
Our mathematics program promotes the ability to solve problems and build mathematics from situations derived from everyday experiences while also emphasizing the importance of learning math facts. The curriculum offers opportunities for self-discovery and exploration of concepts and personal strategies as well as exploring and understanding traditional algorithms. Manipulatives are used at every level as models to provide concrete examples of abstract concepts. Saxon Math is utilized as a comprehensive program that aligns with the Common Core Standards. Our program offers meaningful and ample opportunities to differentiate instruction and to provide all students with access to standards-based instruction.
Our science program is inquiry-based focusing on the scientific method. Students study earth, life, and the physical sciences. EPDS is committed to activity based/hands-on science instruction. The classroom, school grounds, museums, local parks and beaches, and other community destinations/resources are our science laboratories. We have science-related field experiences throughout the year. In the past, these have included visits to such places as Appleton Farms, the Maritime Heritage Center, the Museum of Science, and NOAA.
The history and social studies curriculum helps students acquire a common understanding of world and United States history, political principles, and systems of government in order to prepare them for responsible participation in our school and throughout their community. Students also learn world and United States geography and map skills. Simulations, skits, the use of technology, and visits to historical sites and museums add excitement to the classroom and enrich students’ understanding of political and historical events. Places we have visited in the past include Cape Ann Museum, Historic Salem, Minuteman National Park, and Peabody Essex Museum.