The Blessings of Multi-Grade Schools
Since our teachers may be called to serve in a wide variety of settings, from large schools in the city to small schools operated by a rural congregation, WELS teachers are graduated uniquely equipped to teach in multi-grade classrooms. We are grateful to our Savior Jesus to be able to offer a great education in multi-grade classrooms. Please feel free to speak to our staff about any questions you may have about our school.
The WELS private school system (i.e. parochial , or church operated schools) is the fourth largest private school system in America, operating more than 350 schools nationwide. We have been blessed with experience: WELS congregations have operated elementary schools for over 150 years. In addition, the WELS has developed and maintain a strong support system for WELS schools and teachers.
Benefits of Multi-Grade Classrooms
1. Children are able to spend longer periods of time with the same teacher. This allows the teacher to develop a deeper understanding of a child’s strengths and needs, and is therefore in a better position to support the child’s learning.
2. Children have several years to develop, and are able to see themselves as progressive, successful learners.
3. Children are viewed as unique individuals. The teacher focuses on teaching each child according to his or her own strengths, unlike in same-grade classrooms that often expect all children to be at the same place at the same time with regard to ability.
4. Children develop a sense of family with their classmates. They become a "family of learners" who support and care for each other.
5. Older children have the opportunity to serve as mentors and to take leadership roles.
6. Children are more likely to cooperate than compete. The spirit of cooperation and caring makes it possible for children to help each other as individuals, not see each other as competitors.
7. Older children model more sophisticated approaches to problem solving, and younger children are able to accomplish tasks they could not do without the assistance of older children. This dynamic increases the older child’s level of independence and competence.
8. Children are invited to take charge of their learning, by making choices at centers and with project work. This sense of "ownership" and self-direction is the foundation for lifelong learning.
9. Children have teaching time, because the teacher does not have to spend the early weeks in the school year getting to know each child.
10. Children are exposed to positive models for behavior and social skills.