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Kindergarten - Grade 5 Program


The Kindergarten program is the bridge between the Early Childhood program and Grades 1 through 5.  Beginning in Grade 1, we transition to an all-girls' environment.  Our full day program offers many rich learning opportunities in a play-based environment.  Children are immersed in oral and written language and are encouraged to clarify and express their ideas through discussion, and conversation.  Elementary school sets the tone for a student's future learning experiences.  Our students act out scenes from books, write poems and develop compositions based on research and make visual displays that demonstrate their knowledge.  Spelling, reading, writing and speaking are all skills students develop in their daily classroom experiences.  Lincoln also celebrates special events that nurture our students appreciation for words such as the Month of the Spoken Word and Book Character Day.  Our mathematics program builds a solid conceptual base through lessons that emphasize the important topics of number, algebra, geometry, measurement and data analysis.   Thematic units form the framework of our social studies curriculum.  From understanding our own neighborhood to units on American History and world cultures we look at the world around us from many different lenses.


Language Arts

Our goal is to have each student build an understanding of print and non-print material, learn how to acquire information, communicate effectively and find reading and writing personally fulfilling.

Throughout the Lower School students;
• Read a wide range of material
• Are taught a variety of strategies to comprehend, interpret, evaluate and appreciate texts.
• Use spoken, written and visual language to communicate effectively
• Are taught the elements of process writing to communicate clearly
• Are taught language structures, conventions and genre to create and discuss print and non-print material
• Learn to gather information from a variety of sources.

Spelling, reading, writing and speaking are all skills students develop in their daily classroom experiences. Lincoln also celebrates special events that nurture our students' appreciation of words. On Book Character Day, students dress up as a character from a favorite book. During the Month of the Spoken Word, the whole school celebrates by singing songs, reading aloud, writing and reciting poety, and finding other ways to have fun with language and be creative.



During math classes, the students actively engage in mathematics and with each other to develop procedural, conceptual, and reasoning skills.  In  “Number Talks”, students apply and build understandings of mathematical concepts when solving calculations without pencil and paper, discussing multiple ways to reach solutions and critiquing and clarifying the thought processes.  Later in class, they might be exploring a concept by deriving definitions from a set of numbers or comparing geometric shapes.  Through problem solving, students learn entry points to problems and to consider which strategy best fits the situation. 

Procedural foundations, understanding of number, reasoning, and communication are all central to our mathematics program.  For the 2013-14 school year, our mathematics program is EveryDay Mathematics, with the addition of the problem solving methods of Singapore Math: Math in Focus.  In 2014-15, we will fully adopt Math In Focus




Our goal in the Lower School is to inspire the girls to love science! Whether that is in kindergarten going on an outdoor sound scavenger hunt in their exploration of the senses to fifth graders designing their own experiment to find out how crystals are formed, Lower School students are engaged every day in their discovery of the world around them.Through hands-on experiences at every grade level, we inspire a natural sense of curiosity and wonder.

In the early grades (Kindergarten, 1, and 2), the girls are encouraged to become more independent scientific observers of the world around them. They begin to ask questions, “Why?” or “How”, or even, “I wonder…”. Through units in life, earth, and physical sciences, they begin to understand how the world around them works. We focus on creative problem-solving, reminding them that the answer usually doesn’t come the first time you try. Kindergarteners get their hands dirty learning about the five senses by squeezing balloons filled with mystery substances and describing what they feel. First graders try to figure which of three unknowns is actually alive (they sure don’t look like it!). Second graders have adopted their own class pet--a tree from our
Outdoor Classroom. Throughout the year, they use it as the focus of a scientific study on how organisms grow and change over the course of the school year. Through these experiences (and many more), the girls are shown the just how wondrous science and the ways of the world are.

In grades 3, 4, and 5, the girls begin to delve into more complex topics through units in all branches of science. Their observations turn into questions, hypotheses, and experiments (What is the mystery white powder? How are we going to figure out what it is?). In the life science units, we look at the interdependence of life on earth, how physical science affects that, and the major changes that humans can cause by our activities. The fifth graders look to Rhode Island’s own Narragansett Bay for inspiration and as a springboard to study marine ecology. We build things--from lego vehicles to oak tree sculptures to bridges with craft sticks and modeling clay. The girls are involved in planning, building, and revising their designs to meet particular design challenges.

At all grade levels, science in the Lower School is about discovery. It is real and relevant to the girls’ lives, and broadens their understanding of the world around them. We emphasize that making mistakes is part of science (and part of life!). We learn just as much (if not more) from our mistakes than we do from our successes. When we don’t succeed, we look at the problem again, analyze what went wrong, and try again. This resiliency gives Lincoln girls the tools to face whatever challenges the world may put in their way.  

Visit the Lower School Science Website 

Social Studies and Thematic Units

Thematic Units/Social Studies  in the Lower School weave together literature, history, culture, and geography that gives the girls perspective about their own lives and place in the world.  For example, Cultural Heritage Day is the culminating activity for the fourth grade study of immigration and their own ancestry.  First and second grade love learning about the ancient cultures of Greece an Egypt while fifth graders gain insight into politics and Constitution in an examination of civil rights and the suffragist movement.  Our Quaker values of justice and equity are often reflected in the way we explore various historical and cultural topics.  For example, when researching the history of Providence, third grade students study the lives of such famous founders as Roger Williams and John Brown, as well as the society and culture of the Native Americans who first lived here.

World Cultures and World Languages

Kindergarten:  Is part of our Emergent Languages program (see Early Childhood Program)

Lower School:  Our main goals are to refine pronunciation through repetition and exposure to the specific sounds of the language, to gain cultural awareness about the people and places where the target language is spoken, and to reinforce the students’ knowledge of other subject areas, such as math and social studies, through integrated activities and tasks.  Evidence of understanding is demonstrated by each individual's ability to complete a task at their own pace successfully rather than by grade level objectives.  

In 1st through 4th grades oral and aural communication is emphasized with a steady increase of exposure to the skills of reading and writing in the target language. To maintain these goals, there is no set curriculum per grade, but rather a recycling of vocabulary, communicative functions and embedded structures in new contexts so that the students can reinforce their understanding of the target language while being presented with a variety of topics.

Lincoln’s 5th grade language program is fully incorporated within the Middle School: Over the course of 3 years (5th-7th), the students complete Level 1 language.  More specifically, they begin using a Level 1 textbook and workbooks, which they continue to use through 7th grade.  The students are exposed to new cultures while being introduced to basic grammar, language functions and everyday vocabulary in thematic units. Individual and collaborative activities provide ample opportunity for the students to develop and use the language creatively and personally. Formal evaluation of student performance begins immediately, but formal grading does not begin until mid-year.  

Academic Support

Our Academic Support program supports students with diagnosed learning differences, and learning concerns identified in the classroom, in reaching the academic goals of the Lower School program.  The Lower School Division Director and the Learning Skills Specialist determine eligibility for academic support through a process that includes the input of teachers and parents.  The Learning Skills Specialist collaborates with the teachers and family to set goals tailored to the needs of the student.  Academic support is provided during the school day at no additional cost to the family.  The models of instruction, determined by the Learning Skills Specialist, include individual and group work both in the context of the classroom and in the resource room.   The Learning Skills Specialist monitors student progress and updates families regularly. 



Visual Arts

The major aim of the art program is developing an appreciation of art and a life-long interest in learning about art. Students explore activities involving artistic and perceptional skills, art production, art history, and art analysis. Students are encouraged to develop their own ideas for artwork, refine them and use media expressively. Cooperative learning and problem-solving are encouraged. Students learn to be part of a community of learners.

Performing Arts

Kindergarten - Grade 1

In addition to developing the singing and movement skills learned in Nursery and Pre-K, these children experience beginning solfege, rhythm and pitch notation, instrument playing, and improvisation and composition activities. Grade 1 gives their first musical presentation in February at the Valentines Day Sing. 

Grade 2 - Grade 5 

The performing arts curriculum is cyclical in nature, students revisit elemental concepts and experiences in each grade, continually deepening their awareness and broadening thieir skills. For each grade content areas include:

Musical Elements

Steady beat and beat sub-divisions; meter, pitch, in-tune singing; timbre; musical form

Vocal and Instrumental Skills

All Grades: Solfeggio hand signs and syllables (aids to in-tune singing), pitched and unpitched percussion,Orff xylophones, hand drums

    Grades 3-5: Soprano recorder

    Grades 4-5: Acoustic guitar and ukelele

Musical Literacy

    Grade 2:        Rhythmic Literacy 

    Grades 3-5     Reading and writing standard musical notation-treble clef

Music Appreciation 

Focus on the approach of American composer Aaron Copeland: "What to Listen for in Music" apply to classical, folk and world musics.

Theatrical Skills 

Creative dramatics and dramatic play; consideration of the elements of characterization, projection, timing, stage orientation and blocking. 


Through collaborative partnership that includes the classroom teachers and specialists, skills are integrated and developed within the framework of the curriculum. Students come to the lab with their teachers as projects develop throughout the year.

We work toward competency in the six NETS•S standards for students from the International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE):

  1. Creativity and Innovation 
  2. Communication and Collaboration 
  3. Research and Information Fluency 
  4. Critical Thinking, Problem Solving, and Decision Making 
  5. Digital Citizenship
  6. Technology Operations and Concepts

Physical Education

The Lower School Physical Education program is designed to develop both physical potential and positive social interaction at each grade level. Beginning in the kindergarten and continuing through the Lower School each student is encouraged to participate fully and try new skills. The students learn to listen, follow teacher direction and cooperate with their peers as they experience the enjoyment and benefits of physical activity. The girls start with the practice and refinement of locomotor skills such as skipping, galloping and running and learn movement efficiency and body control. They progress to more advanced physical movement through participation in cooperative and musical games, physical fitness challenges, tumbling, introduction to a wide variety of sports skills, and age appropriate recreational games and competitive team play. Each student in kindergarten through fifth grade in Lower School experiences a unit of creative movement and dance taught by a professional dance teacher.


After-school Enrichment and Extended Day

Lincoln School offers a diverse and engaging after-school program.  In addition to Plaid Pad, our traditional extended day program, Lincoln School provides a variety of enrichment opportunities for your child.  Whether she is a Scientist, a musician, an athlete, an artist, or a free spirit, we are sure to have something to inspire her. Click here for more information.












© 2014 Lincoln School | 301 Butler Avenue | Providence, RI 02906 | Ph: (401) 331 9696 | Fax: (401) 751 6670 
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