Introduction to the Lower School

The Bentley Lower School is comprised of Kindergarten through Grade 5, and has been located on the Oakland “Hiller” Campus since 1969.

The academic program at Bentley’s Lower School emphasizes a strong curricular foundation with a program that is rigorous, supportive, and developmentally appropriate. We establish a deep knowledge base while nurturing and guiding each student’s social and emotional growth. Teachers use a variety of methods to reach each child, utilizing a combination of direct instruction, independent practice, hands-on learning, cooperative group work, and individual conferencing with students. The program offers Lower School students a solid foundation in basic thinking and reasoning.  
In addition to establishing an important academic foundation for our youngest learners, we are committed to providing students with wide exposure to art, music, and world languages. In keeping with the philosophy that a healthy body supports a healthy mind, health and wellness classes are part of the yearly schedule and students develop physical fitness skills and participate in yearly dance and other performances.

In addition, students learn effective study habits, which prepare them for the academic expectations ahead. Throughout the grades, we use many opportunities to support the interaction between children’s social, emotional, and ethical development and their academic lives. In our PACT (Positive Action Character Teams) program, students learn how to name and manage their feelings, and how to resolve conflicts with classmates and peers. Social and emotional themes are also addressed in classroom morning meetings and on the yard at recess. Students flourish in our caring, supportive community, finding joy and satisfaction in learning and in relationships.
On-going assessments guide academic development for our students. Teachers use formal and informal assessments to identify students’ strengths, challenges, and social-emotional growth, interests, and recommendations as students move from grade to grade. Students demonstrate their rising achievement levels through traditional tests and quizzes, standardized testing, projects, presentations, formal and informal writing, observations, and group work. 

If you’d like to know more about what your child can explore and learn at Bentley, please be in touch with us and come for a visit. We look forward to meeting you.

Lower School Events

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Lower School Administration

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The Bentley Story

Founded in 1920, Bentley School has fostered an environment that challenges the mind, striving to bring out the best in every one of its students. Bentley School is committed to academic excellence as well as the development of character and spirit in each of its students. (Read more in the Head of School's Message.)

Where We Are

K-8 Campus
1 Hiller Drive
Oakland, CA 94618
(510) 843-2512
9-12 Campus
1000 Upper Happy Valley Road
Lafayette, CA 94549
(925) 283-2101

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