Lower School

Tatnall’s Lower School is a place of exploration, self-discovery, risk taking, and active learning. Students gain confidence in their abilities as independent learners and are supported as they become accomplished readers, writers, scientists, musicians, and mathematicians. Through individualized and engaging work, students become effective problem solvers and communicators, and become comfortable generating new ideas and strategies.
 
One of the core educational beliefs of The Lower School is discovering each child’s strengths and facilitating growth in those areas, as well as cultivating a self-confidence that lets them try, possibly fail and ultimately, succeed.  This encourages perhaps the greatest strength of the Lower Schoolthe relationships that are built between the faculty and the students. Teachers’ passions and interests are highlighted in their work with students both in the classroom and during the enrichment and supplemental activities that are a part of the Lower School education.  
 
With the goal of educating the whole child, the Lower School instills the expertise and behaviors students will rely on as they continue through their educational journeys. 
 

Values and Traditions

Tatnall’s Lower School prides itself on instilling essential human qualities in their students’ everyday character through their daily routines, cherished programs, and cross-curricular activities. The Lower School provides these lessons through our Daisy Values. The daisy is a longstanding Tatnall symbol. Like a daisy, a child will thrive, blossom, and add grace to the earth when grown in a nurturing environment. The principles the daisy represents are compassion, integrity, honesty, perseverance, sportsmanship, respect, and cooperation. Every day, the Lower School is reminded of the shared commitment to nurture these fundamental ideals in one another. These qualities allow us to be responsible citizens, caring friends, and lifelong learners. Highlighting these human qualities within the curriculum and through words and actions support Tatnall’s mission and motto, Omnia in Caritate, or All Things in Love.

Opening Exercises
A tradition since Tatnall was founded in 1930, Lower School students start each day with Opening Exercises, building a strong sense of community throughout the entire student body. With the opportunity to practice public speaking to an audience of peers, families, and faculty, each Lower School student has the chance to lead Opening Exercises and deliver a reading relating to our Daisy Values.   
 
Holiday Concert
The holiday season would not be complete without the Lower School’s annual Holiday Concert. With an event featuring seasonal music and dance, the students are encouraged to explore their musical talents in front of a large audience of friends, family, and faculty.  
 
May Day
As one of the core traditions of Tatnall since 1940, May Day offers Lower School students the chance to showcase their musical talents in a production-styled event. The students are responsible for presenting a spectacular production of song and dance to the entire Tatnall community. In addition to the many fun, contemporary dances performed, the third grade performs a traditional English Maypole dance.

Field Day
In the spirit of healthy competition and the incorporation of the Lower School’s Daisy Values, Field Day is held each spring to highlight students’ athleticism and skills learned in their physical education classes, as well as inspire fearless fun. Cheering on their fellow classmates, educating about sportsmanship, and learning how to win or lose with grace and dignity are all part of this annual tradition. 

Fourth Grade Campout
Fourth graders, the "seniors" of the Lower School, look forward to the annual Fourth Grade Campout. This team building and bonding experience takes advantage of the beauty and amenities Tatnall’s campus offers, while encouraging our almost-Middle Schoolers to practice their maturity and autonomy with problem solving tasks and getting out of their comfort zone. 


 
“The Lower School feels like one big family and we all know families have traditions and values…the Lower School makes you feel lucky to be a part of it, and gives the students a chance to explore, make mistakes, and get ready for the big world while learning and having fun.”

—Riley Greene (rising 5th grader)