Elementary School

Private Elementary School in Indianapolis

The Elementary School is comprised of grades one through four.

Our focus is on the development of the whole child—socially, emotionally, cognitively, physically, artistically and ethically within a supportive and challenging environment. During these formative years when children are curious and inquisitive, we provide them with opportunities to discover, explore, and experiment. Children learn best by doing and, therefore, are encouraged to think, reason, create, and collaborate through active participation in the learning process.

Individual differences in children vary, and we have created a program that readily accommodates these differences. A broad range of activities and materials enables each child’s growth to proceed naturally.

The Elementary School program is designed to engage developing minds, build self-confidence, allow a child to see the world with multiple perspectives, teach students to work together cooperatively, and develop a concern for others.

List of 6 frequently asked questions.

  • Grades 1 & 2

    The first and second grade curriculum is organized into interdisciplinary units that enhance the children’s ability to connect school life and real life. This allows students to explore areas of study by using multiple learning approaches across academic disciplines. Children learn to express themselves through these modes of communication.

    In order to meet the needs of children at each grade level, teams of teachers construct units of study or themes taking into consideration children’s multiple learning styles and stages of development. Science, Spanish, physical education, technology, and the arts are taught both within the classroom and in specialists’ classrooms. Teaching teams from each grade level work together to coordinate learning through the day.

    Literacy is a primary focus of instruction in the Elementary School. The many ways in which we communicate (e.g. linguistically, artistically, scientifically, technologically, mathematically, and socially) are woven into our curriculum.
  • Grades 3 & 4

    During the third and fourth grades, students are encouraged to move toward academic and personal independence and are provided the framework to develop mastery. Our schedule for grades three and four provides time for math, language arts, literature, social studies, science, Spanish, art, music, and physical education. We are able to provide a course of study that is challenging and demanding, yet appropriately balanced.
  • Significant Elements of the Elementary School

    Field trips, local speakers, and community resources play a vital role in our Elementary School curriculum and units of study.

    Homework is assigned to reinforce classroom work; to challenge and enrich students academically; and to foster self-discipline, organizational skills, and good study habits.

    Formal parent-teacher conferences are scheduled two times during the school year for all ES students, although assessment and conferencing take place on an ongoing basis.

    Progress reports provide parents with meaningful information in regards to their child’s academic achievement and performance. Evidence used in determining progress relates directly to what students have learned and can do based on Indiana State and Orchard standards and objectives.

    ES students are expected to demonstrate behavior consistent with the values and principles of The Orchard School. Guiding principles of the ES are to respect one's self, respect others, respect the environment, and respect time. Students are expected to interact with adults and peers in a courteous way at all times.

    The ES faculty has a passion for what they do. With a wide diversity of styles and approaches, the faculty demonstrate personal and professional creativity in the classroom. Commitment to a consistent and coherent program that best serves the needs of all students is accomplished through a spirit of collaboration fostered by team-teaching and a high degree of collegiality.

    A partnering relationship is encouraged between parents, teachers, and the school. Email and phone calls are used as the primary means of communication. Preschool through second grade teachers will email a weekly newsletter. Grades three and four email a biweekly newsletter. Content includes highlights of activities, review of skills and topics, suggestions for working the your child at home, and upcoming events.
  • Elementary School Curriculum Map

    From Director of Early Childhood and Elementary School Director, Hal Schwartz: What you will see on the webpage today is a snapshot of our EC and ES academic program. Since learning is a dynamic and fluid process, this document is also intended to be dynamic and fluid. What we value most about progressive education is that teachers have the freedom and flexibility to adapt their instruction to the needs and passions of their students, and this document has been written with the value of responsive teaching in mind.

    Click here to start your journey through the EC and ES curriculum map!
  • Featured Articles

    Experience A Bird's Eye View From The Perspective Of A Second Grader

    Click here
    to check out the awesome GoPro video from the point of view of our second grade students who are utilizing our 27-element ropes course to enhance their curriculum.

    Progressive Ed Moments | Photo Album: Fourth Graders Go Hands-On During "Culture Days"

    Click here
    to read more about how fourth grade students at Orchard dive deep into their study of diverse cultures of early Indiana. Rather than sitting in a classroom, watching a video, or reading a book, we take our students outside on our 43-acre wooded campus.
  • Featured Videos

    Elementary School Math at Orchard

    Ropes Course Used for Science Class

    When learning about kinetic versus potential energy in fourth grade, our teachers take advantage of our ropes/challenge course. One student at a time is hoisted 20-25 feet into the air. While tethered in place, the group shouts, "Potential! Potential! Potential!" Then, the students shout, "Kinetic!" as they release the rope and swing freely in the air. The goal is for the students to physically feel the difference between the two types of energy they're studying, while gaining confidence and trust in their team.

Elementary School Highlights

Visits & Tours

Scheduled Tours
A limit of two guests will be paired with an admissions representative and masks are mandatory. Please email Majella Scheer ( ) or call 317-713-5700 to schedule your tour today. We look forward to showing you our beautiful, 43-acre wooded campus! 

Virtual Tour:
Enjoy this VIRTUAL TOUR of Orchard!

For the safety of our students, please bring your driver's license with you in order to check in and tour the campus. Tours last approximately one hour. We look forward to seeing you!



If you're new to Orchard, please follow the link above. We would love to  tell you more about our mission to develop and educate the whole child. Hope to hear from you soon!