Lower Division Curriculum

The Avenues Lower Division provides each child with the social and academic skills needed to interact and explore the world as a confident and effective learner. We have developed a rich, interdisciplinary curriculum that focuses on inquiry, discovery, creativity and building community.

We understand that the primary responsibility of elementary education is the acquisition of academic and study skills. However, academic skills learned in isolation do not create enthusiastic students and life-long learners. Through our curriculum we will provide children with real and meaningful opportunities to use their skills both as a member of a community and as independent learners.

While we set clear expectations for learning, we also approach instruction with the understanding that each child’s development is unique and individual. Through the use of differentiated instruction, we help ensure academic success.

To view the Lower Division curriculum, please click here.

Core Curriculum

In the Lower Division, our teachers implement hands-on, experiential activities to enable students to acquire essential skills, engage in creative thinking, broaden knowledge, and deepen understanding. Language immersion is a critical part of the curriculum. The Lower Division curriculum includes:

  1. Reading, writing and spelling
  2. Mathematics
  3. Science, with an emphasis on the natural world
  4. Chinese or Spanish (partial immersion)
  5. The World Course
  6. Keyboarding and technology fundamentals
  7. Music
  8. Art
  9. Physical education at the Avenues gymnasium and at Chelsea Piers
  10. Life skills

A core element of the Lower Division curriculum for each grade is thematic studies, culminating in a significant project requiring considerable independent work. These themes could be tied to the World Course that spirals through the Avenues curriculum.

A chart of the Lower Division curriculum is available here.

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Recent Articles from OPEN, our news and discussion blog

August 15, 2018

Avenues Adventure School Minimester

by Jessica Berkeley, Middle Grades Humanities Teacher


This spring, 8th grade students in the “Avenues Adventure School” Minimester course had an opportunity to experience some of the ways that New Yorkers can get out and explore our natural environment.  

August 8, 2018

Partner Walks in Small World

by Rita Truong, Head of Small World


In the Avenues Small World program for 2- and 3-year-old students, the children take partner walks with a teacher and one peer in the neighborhood as part of our regular spring curriculum. These walks encourage curiosity, friendship and adventure!  

August 2, 2018

SAMR Application Scope and Sequence

by Jacob Goren, Technology Integrator


We embarked on a months-long process to sort through every education app in our arsenal and categorize them.  

July 27, 2018

Designing and Building an Island in 8th Grade Spanish

by Olga Valeria, Middle Grades Spanish Teacher


As part of of their “City Life” topic, students in the Spanish 8D class worked on a hands-on project, “My City Life.” In collaboration with the iLab, students were to collectively reimagine and reinvent public spaces, paying particular attention to physical, cultural and social identities.  

July 19, 2018

An Exploration in Mixed-Media Self Portraits

by Dorine Yang, Nursery Teacher


As the children are becoming more representational in their drawings, we decided that it would be a excellent opportunity for them to create self portraits. These portraits were also a great way to review and teach new Chinese words related to the face while introducing a new way to do art.  


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