Through research-based programs such as Responsive Classrooms and Second Steps, complemented by an exploration and reflection on the meaning of their Jersey Stripes (standing for courage, honesty, integrity, loyalty, and sportsmanship), Lower School boys learn the importance of character, citizenship, compassion, and other central values.
This specially designed curriculum helps to build a classroom and school learning community where high social and academic goals are both attained. Teachers integrate instruction, learning, and caring in the daily program.
Each year, the boys study one of the Jersey Stripes in depth. Their study culminates in a program, led entirely by the fifth grade and to which each class contributes, that explores the meaning and celebrates the values of that stripe. Along with our Jersey Stripe focus, the boys are coached in the development and strengthening of social skills, such as cooperation, responsibility, empathy, and self-control.
The fifth graders are the Lower School leaders and are looked up to by the younger grades. The Big Brother-Little Brother program and the third through fifth grade Leadership Council are some of the ways in which we give the boys the opportunity to develop and practice their leadership skills and honor their Jersey Stripes.
By the time our boys are ready to move on to Middle School, they have been given a tool kit of strategies to help them problem solve and make good choices in and out of the school environment.