Secular Studies

Reading and Language Arts

Our goal is to give children a language-rich environment, expose them to literature, and ensure they master basic skills.

  • Kindergarten children develop reading and writing skills by completing letter books. Individual and small-group instruction enriches reading skills the children have developed.
  • Primary-grade instruction is based on the Anthology, Journals, Spelling for Writing, Resource, Theme and other books in the Macmillan/McGraw-Hill series.
  • Choral, partner and individual reading, along with literature tapes, are parts of daily classwork.
  • Reading assigned novels and “free choice” books gives students in all grades an appreciation for reading. Teachers set aside time each week for silent reading and reading aloud to the class.
  • All grade levels emphasize the “writing processes” of pre-writing, writing, revising, editing and publishing, with the level of sophistication increasing as children develop the skills tom write more and more effectively.

English – Grades 6-8

Our goal is to help middle-school students become strong, analytic readers and writers.

  • Students in each grade read major literary works, along with many stories, essays and poems from various literature compilations.
  • Students learn the rudiments of writing analytical essays, along with such creative forms as poems, short stories and play scenes.
  • By writing an integrated English/Social Studies research papers throughout their years here, students learn to conduct research, take notes, organize their notes in outline form, compile a bibliography, and footnote their sources.
  • Using Write Source 2000 and Mosdos Press anthologies in Grades 5 through 8, students learn the rudiments of grammar and usage. • Students develop their vocabularies using the Sadlier-Oxford Vocabulary Workshop books and taking weekly quizzes and cumulative tests.


Our mathematics curriculum focuses on developing specific math functions and systematic reasoning skills while developing children's confidence in, and enjoyment of, math. Highly qualified Mathematics Specialists at PHDS prepare our children to compete mathematically in a globally competitive society.

  • Kindergarten math instruction builds on the number recognition, basic patterning, and number sense the children learned in Pre-K. It starts with a daily “morning meeting” and continues within counting, more sophisticated patterning, and continued use of manipulatives.
  • Students in Grades K-5 receive 40-60 minutes of mathematics instruction each day. Teachers motivate them with games, manipulatives and challenging problems.
  • Students in Grades 6-8 receive 45 minutes of math instruction four days a week.


Through active involvement in scientific activity and discovery, science education at PHDS develops children's innate sense of curiosity about themselves and the world around them.

  • In Kindergarten, children study life science, animals, ecology, and personal health and safety.
  • While we expose our students to many subject areas and scientific disciplines, we place special emphasis on the importance of mathematics in the scientific process. Instructional materials reinforce this concept.
  • Grade 6-8 students have 45-minute science lessons four days each week.
  • Our fully equipped science lab gives middle schoolers hands-on laboratory time.
  • By the time they graduate, Providence Hebrew Day School students will have explored life science, earth science, human biology, ecology and environmental science, physical science, and technology.

Social Studies

Through written, verbal, and artistic social studies work, students make realworld connections, gain in-depth knowledge, and develop creativity and artistic talent.

  • Through projects and activities they complete, Kindergarten children learn more about the world and their relationship tom it.
  • Grade 1 and 2 children learn more about their individual uniqueness and how family members interact. The begin to develop map-reading skills and study national and religious holidays and symbols that make us feel special to be Americans and Jews.
  • Grade 3 and 4 students study the natural landscape,