Elementary School

Welcome to our Elementary School!


Thematic teaching will be the basis of instruction in the elementary department.  The joy of this level of education is that so much can be included while teaching social studies, science, and other content areas within developmentally appropriate activities.  Language and literacy development (in both ASL and English), art, math, gross motor, and fine motor will be wrapped into the development of those themes.  We will be including field trip experiences to support the themes taught.


Our goal is to have a variety of literacy activities within each theme.  Daily Read-alouds, guided reading, and independent reading will be expected and modeled; as will the use of ASL literature and drama.  The Friends of OSD granted us the ability to purchase the Signed Stories App and bundles for use on our students iPads and over the classroom projectors. (http://www.signedstories.com/apps)   We love that the students will be able to read/watch their favorite stories in ASL and English over and over again!  Laine, our SLP and communication specialist, has been working with the elementary students using visual phonics.  That is a new system to me and one I am excited to learn and to see implemented as well.  She uses both pull-out and push-in service models.


We have seen Writers’ Workshop be an effective and meaningful way to provide instruction across the elementary grades and plan to put that into place.  In addition to the direct instruction mini-lessons that kick off writers’ workshop, We have seen how the students encourage and teach one another as they work on authentic projects and explore the many ways print is used.


The math curriculum we are using currently comes from The Math Learning Center. http://www.mathlearningcenter.org Bridges in Mathematics and Number Corner work together to provide a well-rounded, hands-on program for concept development at both the concrete and symbolic levels. (By the way, they have some free apps on their website!) Envision Math, through Pearson, is the middle school program and this year our third graders transitioned into that program.


We have purchased Project STEM from Pearson to be used in the elementary department.  We will be trying out the K-2 student modules (6 project based topics and labs). 


We are currently investigating two additional curriculum components.  One is The Incredible Flexible You, a Social Thinking and social emotional learning curriculum that is geared for the early elementary years.  We also participate in the school wide PBIS program and are discussing ways to continue to support the development of students’ self-regulation and problem solving skills.


The second is MindWing Concepts materials which link language development to literacy development with some hands-on tools.  Story Grammar MarkerTalk to Write, Write to Learn, and Holding Stories in the Palm of Your Hand  are the components we are currently investigating.  Braidy, the StoryBraid is the initial component that would be used in the Kindergarten classroom to develop narrative development and critical thinking skills. Holding Stories is the application of the Story Grammar Marker to Deaf students who use English and ASL.


For more information, please contact:


Ms. Robyn Brown, Lead Teacher



Ms. Kayla Meese, K Teacher



Ms. MaryEllen Graham, Grades 1-2 Teacher



Ms. Michelle Hardey,  Grades 3-4



Mr. Scott Pfaff,  PE Teacher



Ms. Cherie Ulmer, School Counselor