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Two elementary school girls working on a circuit.

Ready to be Empowered

Goal Setting & Age-Appropriate Decision Making

Working in collaboration, elementary students, parents, and classroom teachers determine three individual goals for each child to achieve during the school year. Goals are designed to be developmentally appropriate for each child and may encompass the following categories: Social, Academic, and Organizational. We believe that the need to reflect on our experiences, as individuals, and as a community, is essential to our continued growth.


Documentation of children’s learning is gathered in portfolios that include goals, rubrics, anecdotal records, samples of children’s work, and assessment–formative and summative. Both teacher and child share in the process of selecting material for portfolios, which provides abundant opportunities for self-assessment and conversations. This reflection leads to realistic and meaningful feedback about the achievement for both current and future learning expectations. Building the portfolio is an ongoing process throughout the school year, and the student and classroom teacher may submit entries. It enables children to construct for themselves an authentic and lasting sense of personal value and competence.

Shared Conferences

Unlike typical Parent-Teacher Conferences, Rectory's Shared Conferences include and are led by the children. Looking through the portfolio with their parents and teacher during Shared Conferences allows our students to reflect on their work, notice what has changed, and look ahead and plan for what still needs to be done.


Young boy elementary school student reading to an older girl.


Elementary school students looking at the bark of a tree through magnifying glasses.