French American Lower School (Grades PS - 5)
The French American International Lower School program educates students in preschool through 5th grade in a French immersion program fully accredited by the French Ministry of Education. Our excellent teaching faculty, all native speakers in French, work to stimulate intellectual curiosity, encourage independent thinking, and foster individual responsibility. Parents choose FAIS for its academically rigorous curriculum and superb language immersion program. FAIS students graduate with an appreciation of cultural differences and the life-long skills necessary to succeed in an increasingly global society.
Accredited by the French Ministry of Education, the Lower School follows the recommendations and directives of the French curriculum beginning in preschool. The French American Lower School also has been accredited as an IB World School for the Primary Years Programme (PYP) since 2013. An English program is integrated with the French immersion starting in preschool; by the second grade the study of English is expanded to meet the guidelines of the National Council of Teachers of English and the State of Oregon.
Instruction of students in our Lower School follows the French system of cycles. Cycle One includes preschool, prekindergarten, and kindergarten and is known as Maternelle. Cycle Two includes first and second grade, and Cycle Three includes third, fourth, and fifth grade. This flexible, team-based system accommodates a wide range of student learning styles and permits each child to progress at his or her own pace. The curriculum of each cycle promotes specific developmental objectives and fosters sound learning skills.
Short and long-term projects are an important priority in the Lower School; implemented in the classroom or directed toward new pedagogical research, they are another sign of the pervasive energy and dynamism on the FAIS campus. There is always something exciting happening in the Lower School, including field trips, our annual Fête de la Musique, field studies, theatrical performances, the fifth graders’ annual trip to France, and various on and off-campus cultural events. The School’s commitment to the continuing professional development of our faculty and staff make it a place of vitality and rich cultural exchange.