Primary Overview

The Luria Primary School curriculum combines General Studies, Judaic Studies and Hebrew Immersion through a child-centered and cross-curricular approach to learning. We follow the Montessori method combined with use of NYS Standards and Developmentally Appropriate Practices, and track student development and progress through careful observation and documentation.  We use Montessori materials in our classrooms, which are explored through whole group, small group, and individual activities. We use mixed age groups, placing children into leadership roles and allowing children to learn from their peers. These mixed age groups enable us to support children’s development based on their abilities as opposed to age or grade level.

Each classroom is divided into eight primary areas: Practical Life, Sensorial, Math, Language, Cultural Subjects (Science and Social Studies), Art, Hebrew, and Judaic Studies. The materials in each area are based on the needs, levels, and interests of children.


Children develop coordination, concentration, a sense of personal independence and a sense of order. The activities are divided into four categories: care of the person, care of the environment, grace and courtesy, and control of movement.

Children refine and develop the senses because it is through the senses that all information is taken in and processed. The materials advance skills that include matching, seriation, classification, one-to-one correspondence and perceptual acuity with regard to color, dimension, sound, touch, and taste. They also provide the basis for language and math.

The initial focus of the Language area is to set up a purpose for learning literacy skills; this is achieved by making sure there an extensive amount of print in the environment, having discussions about language, reading to children, engaging in writing activities, and demonstrating that language can be spoken, heard, written, and read.

The focus in Math is initially on developing an understanding of quantity and magnitude, as these understandings are the prerequisites for more advanced mathematical thinking. To ensure solid understandings, children use materials that help them visualize these properties and associate them with written numerals. As they move through the primary school, the focus is on expanding knowledge of place value, skip counting, addition, and subtraction. The children also master one to one correspondence, rote counting and numeral identification.

This area is divided into sections on Science and Geography. An abundance of puzzle maps, paper maps, globes, multicultural pictures/photos and books are the basis of the geography curriculum. Students engage in a variety of science experiments in order to learn about the scientific processes of inquiry and investigation. They manipulate scientific materials including test tubes, microscopes, magnifying glasses, and binoculars to learn about botany, biology, astronomy, and earth science. Science themes include Land, Air, and Water, Magnetism, Basic Machines, Botany, and Zoology.

Art activities focus primarily on fine-motor control and skill building, with particular emphasis on developing hand strength and proper pincer grip that provide the foundation for writing and artistic expression. Children learn how to work with different media including collaging, cutting with scissors, color mixing, painting with tempera and watercolor paints, and sketching so they can use each as a mode to express their own creativity. Music and drama are also integral parts of the curriculum. Children listen to a variety of musical styles and learn songs that enrich their learning. They engage in creative movement activities, experiment with a variety of musical instruments, and learn about rhythm and tempo.

Learning the Hebrew language is one of the first steps children take in making their acquaintance with their heritage, religion, and culture. We follow a Hebrew language immersion model, in which one teacher speaks exclusively in Hebrew to the children and adults in the classroom.

Judaic Studies lessons help children develop a sense of collective history and culture while also providing an opportunity to explore their spirituality and relationship with God. These lessons help children recognize and celebrate the diverse, personal ways in which Judaism plays a role in their everyday lives.  Children begin to form a strong Jewish cultural identity through exposure to and practice of Jewish traditions such as Shabbat and holidays. Children develop an understanding of the Torah through study of the weekly parasha (Torah portion), dramatic storytelling, and related skill-building activities integrated throughout the curricular areas. Children learn Jewish prayers, songs, and music in Hebrew during morning Tefilah (prayer), movement activities, and Shabbat celebrations.

Lower School Overview

At Luria, we educate the whole child and develop curriculum that supports each individual child's cognitive, emotional, moral, and social development. Teaching and Learning at Luria is student centered.  SCI (student-centered instruction) focuses on skills and practices that enable lifelong learning and independent problem-solving. We strive to develop learner independence by providing skills for how to learn and supporting students to create their own schemata, or episodic memory, to allow for deep meaning. Student-centered learning emphasizes the student’s role in synthesizing meaning from new information and prior experiences. 

Luria Academy implements an academically challenging curriculum in a calm and intentional environment. At Luria we work hard to strike a balance between academic rigor and respecting the pace of an individual child's development. The curriculum is sequential and children move through it at their own pace; progress is carefully tracked based on New York State Standards. Our integrated curriculum is held to the highest academic standards and is executed in a way that encourages critical thinking, deductive and inductive reasoning, peer cooperation, and personal responsibility. Luria places a premium on creating a culture of compassion in the classroom. We believe a rigorous curriculum can, and must, include and accommodate children with special needs.