Top Languages By Number of Native Speakers
LANGUAGE AND CAREER PATHWAYS
Business and Finance
Students entering in grades K-5 choose a foreign language path that will be integrated into their school day using a 60/40 model. Our 60/40 approach provides 60% of instruction in their native language and 40% in their chosen foreign language. This model perfects their native language while building the foundation to read, write, and speak in a second language. Through hands-on experimentation and cooperative learning, students develop critical thinking and problem solving skills essential for success in all aspects of their lives. Our teachers respond to and promote intellectual curiosity as the facilitator. Echelon's academic curriculum is enhanced by technology and the arts. Technology is seamlessly integrated into the core curriculum at all grade levels beginning in Kindergarten. And finally, participation in the fine arts and physical education build the spirit and the body just as the academic curriculum does for the mind.
The Middle School years are ones of great transition, fun, challenge, and maturation; they are foundational years for students. These are the years in which study habits and foundational knowledge across the curriculum are enhanced and reinforced. Echelon's Middle School experience combines academic excellence with a safe and supportive environment to help each child feel connected in meaningful ways to the school community and fellow students. Middle school students will master one of the three parts of learning a foreign language each year. Each part will be evaluated after the completion of a year round project. Sixth grade students will exemplify a mastery of listening in a foreign language, seventh grade students will demonstrate a mastery of reading and writing in a foreign language and eighth grade students will showcase a mastery of speaking in a foreign language. All middle school students are required to participate in one additional foreign language class after school each week to ensure language proficiency in these crucial developmental years. In addition to classroom activities, middle school students participate in a variety of field trips including an overnight retreat.
The Echelon educational experience is structured to develop mastery of subject matter as well as a life-long love of learning. Beginning in high school, students will choose one of Echelon's pathways: Business and Finance, Law, Medicine, STEM, Global Studies, or Art. Each pathway will explore student interests in depth through advanced courses specific to their chosen pathway alongside courses in their chosen foreign language. Classes at Echelon compel students to explore and examine a recognized body of scholarship that prepares each individual for life as an informed citizen. Along the way, the cultivation of mind and spirit is ever present. Internships with local businesses are an integral part of the student's High School experience. Students who meet the minimum attendance requirement benefit from internships by refining career goals, making connections, networking, and discovering more about themselves and future vocational options. For students looking for a challenge, honors courses are offered as well as dual enrollment for freshmen, sophomores, juniors, and seniors. Dual enrollment is a program that allows high school students to enroll in college courses for credit prior to high school graduation. All seniors are required to complete a capstone project guided by a mentor that showcases an excellent understanding of their chosen career pathway and foreign language.
Welcome to High Flyers, a before and after school program for our Echelon students. Students can be dropped off early to start their morning with our Echelon Team!
Even after school, children need a place where they continue to be engaged in a fun, comfortable, child-friendly environment.
Homework help, test prep, games, and structured outdoor activities are just a few things that ensure our kids go home happy every day.
The Echelon Curriculum
At the forefront of our curriculum is the fusion of foreign language and culture into our students' daily academic life. In elementary school, Echelon students engage in learning their foreign language of choice 40% of the school day. Students will learn subject content in both their native and foreign language, developing a primary understanding of tenses, vocabulary, pronunciation, sentence structure, and language patterns. Building upon all patterns learned, elementary students will demonstrate the ability to listen, read, write and speak in their foreign language, using these methods to study its cultural impact. Middle school builds upon the fundamentals learned, forming a deeper understanding of past, present, and future tenses, advanced vocabulary, all while forming comparisons about current and past culture in their foreign language. Middle school students are required to take a minimum of one foreign language class each semester and participate in an additional after school foreign language class once a week to ensure accelerated growth and formation of a bilingual mindset. High school students develop a mastery of their foreign language, continuing to build upon communication skills learned previously. High school students participate in oral and written discussion, utilizing complex sentences to relay information in a meaningful and fluent manner. Students will pioneer daily conversation, dialogues and debate in their foreign language as language will be coalesced within their chosen career path and independent cultural exploration. Every senior completes and presents a capstone project guided by a mentor that culminates everything learned, proving expertise in their foreign language and chosen career path.
Reading and Writing
Reading and Writing are integrated naturally as they should be, and include the many different purposes of writing: to entertain, to explain, to perform, to persuade, and to reflect. Our Reading/Language Arts model encompasses rich reading materials that allow for critical work in the areas of the five essential components of literacy: fluency, phonemic awareness, vocabulary development, phonics, and comprehension. Multi-sensory strategies provide the opportunity for each student to build on reading strengths, yet improve in weaker areas. Applied skills practice in identified areas increase effective reading and a daily reading log creates habitual reading enjoyment and builds reading confidence.
Through hands-on Science and creative opportunities for exploration, Echelon's engaged students develop new ways of looking at the world. Science is taught through experimentation, research, and inquiry while lab experiences provide the opportunity to use observation as well as analytical and critical thinking skills. Echelon reinforces the interdependence between math and science.
Math is provided at each individual level and is taught through flexible grouping. An interactive approach using manipulatives, real world application, and math games are the key to our successful math program. Reinforcement and review of basic skills keep the math foundation strong while also enabling students to reach problem solving levels commensurate with those skills. Advanced math students embark on a rigorous academic direction preparing our graduates to go on to higher education.
Arts and Physical Education
Art, music, drama and physical education are a part of our daily schedule for all grades. Every month students participate in a different recreational sport such as tennis, field hockey, lacrosse, and soccer. During the last week of each month, our students have their physical education class at the indoor pool. Frequently throughout the year, we have special events featuring visiting artists and performers who come to our school to work with our students.
Learning Social Studies broadens each student's understanding of the world. The social studies curriculum in the lower grades focuses primarily on our local communities and how they function, and the history of Maryland and Washington DC. The upper grades study the early United States, ancient civilizations, modern world history and U.S. history. geography, which includes maps, countries, capitals, major geographical landmarks, and topography of the entire world, is infused throughout the social studies curriculum.
All lower, middle, and upper school students average two field trips per month as well as a trip to the indoor pool. Trips provide an educational experience both socially and academically and allow us to connect to the community. Experiential learning is at its finest as we complement classroom learning with field trips that make education come alive. Since our instruction integrates the arts, we also include cultural field trips which expose students to new performances and exhibits. This rounds out our holistic child approach by building interests on the leisure side of our students and nurturing cultural appreciation at the same time.