The Elementary Division includes First through Fifth grades. Teachers in each classroom provide the individual attention each child needs. Burgundy seeks to help the elementary student develop academic competency, a positive self-image, respect for others, concern for the environment, self-motivation, self-discipline, and critical thinking skills.

There are two separate first grade classes with one teacher and one teaching assistant in each. The Lower School features mixed-age classrooms for second and third grade students, as well as fourth and fifth grade students, making two sections of 2/3 and two sections of 4/5. Two teachers in each section typically provide grade-level instruction in math and language arts. For social studies units, which operate on a two-year loop, the age levels of the children in instruction groups are mixed.

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The interdisciplinary, experiential curriculum links language arts, social studies, math, and science in themed-based units such as the Middles Ages and the Chesapeake Bay. For example, math classes emphasize a hands-on approach to a true understanding of math concepts and facts.

Students receive reading instruction and read age-appropriate literature, both fiction and non-fiction. Writing is a daily activity across the curriculum. Social Studies and Science provide thematic emphasis in the classroom and on field trips, particularly fall and spring overnight trips to Cooper’s Cove, our wildlife campus in West Virginia. The Cove experience, in which parents may participate, is an integral part of our environmental science and social studies program.


Students also have classes in the special subjects including French or Spanish, music, art, drama, research and library skills, and physical education. Computer skills are integrated across the curriculum.

Parent-teacher conferences are held in November and March. Progress reports are written in January and June. Communication between teachers and parents is always open and encouraged.

Our Curriculum Guides are available here and in the Lower School Head’s office.