Grade 6 Departmentalized Academics for 2023-2024 School Year
Our sixth grade program for the 2023-2024 school year will work as both a combined 5/6 class, giving students all of the benefits of our combined Primary School programs, as well as a single sixth grade class. Sixth graders will partake in the arts programs, homeroom, lunch, and recess with their sixth grade classmates but will take all academics separately for this school. For the 2024-2025 school year, our program for this grade level will following our usual pattern for the primary school, having a split 5/6 class with a full-time aide in the classroom to assist with differentiation and personalization of instruction.
As such, this year's sixth grade will spend all of their academic time in a class of only 10 children total in the room. This very small class will allow for incredible amounts of individual attention. It will also allow our sixth graders to make a smooth transition into our program from other schools wherein they may have been the oldest or youngest in the school depending on the makeup of the district. Because our primary school is modeled after the development of the adolescent brain rather than upon space constraints or district policies, our sixth graders have room to enjoy being children while still developing an increased level of independence and being given more difficult academic material. At CBA, we believe firmly in allowing our students the cognitive space and emotional support to remain children for an appropriate amount of time, and our sixth graders are absolutely still given time to play, are exposed to the magic of holidays, are encouraged to experience the excitement of adventures, and given full support to enjoy all of the beauty that comes with still being a "kid" rather than feeling the pressure to prematurely fit yourself into an adolescent world in which you do not belong.
For the majority of their academic day, our grade six students will partake in departmentalized academics with teachers they will have for years throughout their CBA journey. Their dedicated wing, in which their beautiful homeroom is located, is across the hall from the Intermediate School, allowing them the ability to get to know the teachers they will have in the future and easily navigate a departmentalized schedule. Their close proximity to our arts wing allows for increasing autonomy as they progress throughout the Primary School, and by the second quarter, 5th and 6th graders will go on their own to their arts classes in the arts wings (supervised by program directors). Our 6th graders enjoy many of the same privileges as our younger Primary School students, such as the ability to participate in the Spring Musical, Friday A La Carte snacks during lunch, and use of the older students' playground at recess, plus a few additional ones, like the ability to work crew for the fall drama and the opportunity to participate in the school-wide Reading Buddies program. Our service requirement increases to two hours per quarter during Primary School, with one hour satisfied quarterly by school-sponsored events. By these grade levels, students are also engaged in quarterly projects in ELA, math, and a combined activity for the content areas. Geography, history, and more formal instruction in science also become hallmarks of these grades, and students begin explicit instruction in study skills, enjoying their transition from learning to read to reading to learn. French language exposure continues in grade 6, with students continuing their introduction to the language conversationally through educational songs, videos, and interactive digital activities. Grade 6 students also take the IOWAs in the spring, allowing teachers and parents to track student progress in a very concrete way and allowing students a bit of exposure to standardized testing in a safe, nurturing environment without any of the pressure of a high-stakes exam. Their arts instruction also becomes more focused at these grade levels, splitting into recreational and preprofessional tracks in certain areas to ensure that children who wish to more seriously pursue an art form have the ability to do so. Their interaction with the 3rd, 4th, and 5th graders also increases during arts courses, allowing for more social interaction with children who have similar goals and passions. As happens with each year of growth, their involvement in CBA-wide events increases. At the end of 6th grade, they celebrate their entry to the Intermediate School with a Bridging Ceremony hosted by their teachers, families, and 5th grade friends. Take a look below at what a day in the life of a CBA 6th grade student looks like:
8:00-8:10: Homeroom in 5th/6th Grade Room 8:10-9:10: Math with Ms. Purdy 9:10-10:10: ELA with Ms. Trotta 10:10-10:40: Intro to French with Madame 10:40-11:30: World History w/ TBD 11:30-12:00: Science w/ TBD 12:00-12:40: A Day- Mindfulness; B Day- Study Skills (all in homeroom) 12:40-1:20: Lunch and Recess 1:20-2:00: A Days- Music; B Days- Acting and Musical Theater 2:00-2:40: Visual Arts 2:40-3:20: Dance (Recreational or Preprofessional): ~Recreational: Mon.- Musical Theater; Tue. - Yoga; Wed. - Acro; Thur. - Hip Hop; Friday - Dance Aerobics ~Preprofessional: Mon. - Ballet; Tue. - Tap/Acro; Wed. - Modern; Thur. - Jazz; Fri. - Hip Hop 3:20-3:30: Pack and Dismissal