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Lower School Science

Dig into research. Find out how things work. Explore the world around you, and become a better problem-solver in the process.

Cultivating Curiosity

Scientific inquiry comes naturally to all children. That’s why we use our unique learning environment to foster students’ inquisitiveness and connect them to the world around them. By using both indoor classrooms and outdoor spaces as science laboratories, students are excited and engaged as they learn and explore.

Our curriculum is based on earth, life, space, and physical sciences. Through direct instruction and open and guided inquiry, students develop their abilities to analyze and reason. They question, observe, predict, experiment, draw conclusions, and reflect on their findings.


Science is a hands-on experience in pre-kindergarten, where we give our students every opportunity to explore and observe their environment. The classroom is set up to nurture children’s knowledge and sense of wonder, both about themselves and the world.

In pre-kindergarten, students may:

  • Discover methods of scientific discovery
  • Develop confidence to ask questions and make predictions
  • Explore physical science
  • Investigate with scientific tools
  • Experience chemical science, including cooking and simple experiments
  • Become aware of basic concepts in health, nutrition, and safety
  • Study natural science, including the life cycles of animals and plants
  • Demonstrate respect and care for living things and the environment

In kindergarten, we foster our students’ natural instinct to explore, building a positive way of thinking about science.

In kindergarten, students may:

  • Learn through engaging, hands-on experiments that encourage them to use their senses to observe outcomes
  • Discover, identify, and experiment in our outdoor classrooms

Students in first grade use project-based learning, technology-based research, journaling in notebooks, and interactive lessons.

In first grade, students may:

  • Describe, analyze, design, test, communicate, classify, and record
  • Expand and enhance their background knowledge and enrich their skills in scientific reasoning

At the second-grade level, students are introduced to scientific inquiry and the scientific process, and they begin using their skills and tools to conduct simple scientific investigations.

In second grade, students may:

  • Conduct classroom and field investigations
  • Develop their skills such as collecting information, using tools such as a microscope, making inferences, communicating conclusions, and making informed decisions

By this time, students start to supplement their knowledge with skills, deepening their understanding of concepts by experimenting and applying the scientific method.

In third grade, students may:

  • Explore the properties of water, oceanography, weather, and ecology, and examine the interdependence of these scientific issues
  • Use a barometer and an anemometer to read weather maps
  • Participate in a fossil hunt to explore the geological story of southwest Ohio
  • Study the body’s respiratory system, the chemistry of food, the life cycle of stars, and efforts to explain the transfer of solar energy

The fourth-grade science curriculum focuses on the scientific process of investigation and analysis.

In fourth grade, students may:

  • Participate in opportunities that encourage critical thinking and reasoning through discussion, experimentation, and exploration
  • Enhance their creativity, communication, and collaboration

Fifth-grade science is built on the integration of science, technology, engineering, and math.

In fifth grade, students may:

  • Explore the natural world and make connections between core concepts and ideas
  • Employ critical thinking to analyze how concepts are interrelated and to expand their scientific knowledge