It’s hard to overestimate the importance of developing a child’s artistic skill and creativity. ECDS students take art classes twice a week, and additional classes are available for children who are gifted in this area. Our teachers, naturally, plaster the walls with the children’s voluminous work. Students participate in many contests in and around Connecticut, and have been very successful in their entries. We gather many of their pieces together for our annual art show, a favorite occasion for all.
The ability to communicate in other languages is an important skill, and a powerful way to open one’s own mind to different thought patterns. In this ever shrinking world, moreover, familiarity with other prevalent languages is a must. Students of all ages, even our Pre-Schoolers, get regular Spanish instruction. Grades K-12 have class several times a week. Our Spanish program promotes appreciation of Hispanic heritage, and helps students gain knowledge and understanding of the culture, through instruction in the Spanish language. This is achieved through age appropriate activities such as songs, games, and writing. By grades 3 and 4, Spanish is spoken exclusively in the classroom, and all students respond in the language. ECDS graduates usually find their transition to high school language courses easy, and in fact are often ahead of the curve.
Additional Foreign Languages
Students in Grades 5 and up have the option of taking Latin, French and/or Mandarin in addition to or in place of Spanish.
In our school-wide emphasis on the fine arts, drama is a particular favorite. We produce two major performances each year, at least one of which is a musical. All grades from Kindergarten up are included, and all children who wish to participate are given parts. Our Drama department provides a wonderful opportunity for parents to get involved by working on costumes, scenery and lighting. Students in grades 5 through 8 may choose whether to participate.
Everybody loves music! All students at ECDS take vocal music twice a week, and have the opportunity to take individual lessons on many instruments. As part of our emphasis on the arts, the music department works directly with the drama department on our two big productions in December and May. The entire student body participates in both.
In this busy day and age, it is growing ever harder to find time to sit with children for a meal (much less spend the time speaking to them about which fork to use). We equip our children to succeed in the public and/or formal social situations they will inevitably encounter. ECDS offers a class for each grade, each week, on proper table manners and conversation. The class culminates with a trip to a nice restaurant to practice their skills in public.
As ECDS believes all students should develop a comfort level speaking to large groups, either Public Speaking or Debate is required.
This course teaches important beginning skills such as rising from a chair and approaching the podium, to visually scanning the audience to engage them non-verbally while speaking, as well as proper hand position, posture, and much more while speaking. Helping students to gain the confidence to speak to the group and become effective speakers by honing their personal styles is a predominant focus of this class.
Optional for Grades 5-8, meets weekly to formally discuss and debate current topics.
Track and Field
An optional P.E. course for those who do not wish to take Debate.