The Stokes County Schools Elementary Program works toward students gaining independence and responsibility. Our program builds a strong foundation for future success. Expectations for high student achievement are coupled with a strong focus on building a positive self-concept.
A strong emphasis on English/language arts is found in the elementary classroom. Students develop skills in listening, speaking, reading, and writing. A balanced literacy approach incorporating self-selected reading, guided reading, word development (phonics), and writing is used in the elementary classrooms. Students read a wide variety of materials individually, in small groups, and whole class. Elementary students as "authors" learn to express their ideas and apply spelling skills and mechanics of the English language. Teachers use teaching strategies including Guided Reading, Math Expressions, and Empowering Writers to help students develop proficient English/language arts skills.
Mathematics is another major component of elementary curriculum. Students develop an understanding of numbers, patterns, geometric ideas, measurement skills and learn to construct tables and graphs. These mathematical concepts are intertwined with problem-solving and critical thinking. Students are actively involved in their learning to promote understanding. The power of mathematics is developed and nurtured through the use of manipulatives.
Science and social studies are integrated in mathematics and English language arts. Science involves hands-on activities to develop skills in observing, measuring, classifying, predicting, recording and interpreting information.
In the primary grades social studies begins with the family in kindergarten and progresses through communities in the world in grade three. Students in grade four study North Carolina and in grade five the United States, Canada, Mexico and Central America. Students at all elementary grades participate in activities to promote good citizenship and decision-making.
Elementary students participate in music and physical education. These classes are taught by a certified specialist. Each elementary school has a media coordinator who teaches computer and library skills. Elementary school counselors provide guidance to students individually, in small groups and in whole class activities.
As you pass by an elementary classroom, you will not always see desks in rows with a teacher in front of the class. You will see students working in pairs or groups talking and interacting with the teacher or each other. You will see students working with hands-on materials to promote understanding. You will see the teacher in the role of a coach so students can construct their own understanding.
The elementary classroom is a rich environment where learning options are available. Students explore the exciting world around them. Through a developmentally appropriate curriculum, subjects are integrated to provide a more real life approach which creates an enthusiasm for learning.