The Lower School core curriculum extends learning beyond the standards of language arts, mathematics, science and social studies to include world language, global studies, technology and library education. Topics are taught in an interactive and multidisciplinary manner. Student projects integrate art and technology with research and writing skills, while poetry recitations and plays refine public speaking and communication skills.
Teachers facilitate learning using individual and group instruction as well as educational opportunities both inside and outside of the classroom: field trips, special guest speakers, community service and affiliations with organizations such as the San Diego Opera and the La Jolla Playhouse.
We also aim to develop knowledgeable, literate citizens who will become decision-makers in our world, armed with a keen sense of global awareness and responsibility. Spanish-immersion instruction and culture studies prepare students to converse in a global community.
Grades 1–4: A distinct approach to developing all aspects of our students
The Lower School’s curriculum places equal importance on academics and character education. A formal character education program focuses on values, behaviors and social skills. Actions reflecting good character are recognized and celebrated in every classroom consistently throughout the school year.
A major goal of the Lower School experience is to ensure that students understand the need to help others and give back to the community. To this end, all students in kindergarten and Grades 1–4 participate in community service activities that are appropriate for their grade level.
Lower School students at La Jolla Country Day School (LJCDS) are equipped with the skills to create and appreciate various forms of art. Music, dance, drama and visual arts classes each emphasize process over product. A visiting “Artist In Residence” may specialize in dance, drama, music or storytelling.
The Lower School offers a host of opportunities for the young artist. Weekly art lessons incorporate a variety of media. Third-graders learn the recorder, while fourth-graders study the violin and collaborate in a performance with the La Jolla Playhouse. Students can take strings lessons, participate in the Lower School Orchestra and experience the excitement of performing with Middle and Upper School students at special events.
Daily physical education is an important component of the Lower School curriculum. Physical education, which is taught by La Jolla Country Day School’s junior varsity and varsity coaches emphasizes gross motor skills and sportsmanship. Organized games and special activities help prepare students to compete in Middle and Upper School athletics. All of our students benefit from the state-of-the-art gymnasium and competition-level tennis courts.