Students in grades one through five receive a Christ-centered education. With an emphasis on academic and spiritual development, our rigorous curriculum encourages students to grow their faith by maximizing their own unique gifts and talents. Together, with the family, we prepare our students for success in the classroom and beyond by encouraging a deep understanding of God’s great love for them.
Elementary doors open at 8:35am; classes begin at 8:45am with dismissal at 3:50pm. Before and after school extended care is available for all students.
Shepherd of the Lakes is part of the Mid Michigan Independent Athletic Association which includes area private schools and small public schools. SOTL fields a cross country, girls volleyball, co-ed soccer, girls cheer, boys basketball, and girls basketball teams for students in grades five through eight.
Religion- Concordia Publishing House’s One in Christ curriculum is used to explore God’s Word. Students learn about sin, forgiveness, and grace while focusing on the actions of God on behalf of his people. The curriculum centers on Christ so that students will have optimal opportunities to grow in their faith and Christian lives.
Mathematics- Students use Houghton Mifflin Harcourt’s GO Math! which offers an engaging and interactive approach. Its seamless digital path and write-in student edition ensure that students can access content at appropriate levels of depth and rigor.
English Language Arts- The Literacy by Design curriculum provides instruction in reading and writing. The strategic design of the program ensures success for every student by teaching grade-level skills along with developmental skills. Reading and writing components follow the same instructional path to ensure consistency. Utilizing the reciprocal relationship between reading and writing gives students enhanced opportunities to practice and strengthen skills in multiple contexts. The Accelerated Reader program provides individualized reading goals for each student.
Science- The Battle Creek Science curriculum encourages students to engage in physical science, life science, earth science, inquiry, and technology. Students carry out investigations, talk and write about their observations and emerging understandings, and discuss ways to test them.
Social Studies- Students begin by studying the relationships of people to God, to each other, and the world in which they live. As students progress they acquire map skills, investigate regions of the U.S., and explore history. All classes except for third grade use TCI‘s Social Studies Alive! curriculum. My Community teaches first grade students the basic of geography, economics, and citizenship. Second grade students study different countries through Our Community and Beyond. Third grade students study Michigan History. Fourth grade students study Regions of Our Country. Fourth graders also visit Mackinac Island for an overnight field trip. Fifth graders study America’s Past, Native Americans through the Civil War.
Technology- Desktop touchscreen computers and tablets are available in each classroom. In addition, students have instruction each week in the computer lab. Students are introduced to basic Microsoft applications such as Word and PowerPoint. Students practice keyboarding and learn general computer operations.
Spanish- Students in first through fourth grades use Santillana’s Nuevo Bravo Bravo curriculum. Starting in fifth grade, students use Prentice Hall’s Realidades. All students speak, listen, write, and read in Spanish.
Physical Education- Fitness is emphasized with age-appropriate activities. Students are given basic instruction in lifetime sports, and fine and gross motor skills and coordination skills are practiced.
Art- Young artists experiment with media and techniques to create paintings, drawings, sculptures, and multi-media pieces in the manner of the masters. Student masterpieces are displayed in our spring Music and Art Fair.
Music- At SOTL we strive to instill love and appreciation for all types of music. Students grow their God-given abilities and talents through vocal and instrumental music. Students then share their gifts with others and in praise to our Savior. Students sing periodically in worship services, in the Christmas Cantata, in the Good Friday Cantata, and in our spring Music and Art Fair.
Some special education services are available.
Read about our extracurricular activities such as interscholastic sports and math club.