Germantown Friends School’s Quaker identity fundamentally influences the Lower School program. The study of Quaker values guides young children of many diverse religious backgrounds to learn to express themselves honestly, to listen well to others, to solve conflicts peacefully, and to be good members of the community. The faculty and staff in the Lower School establish warm relationships with the children in an environment that promotes mutual respect.
The Lower School Quakerism Committee, comprised of dedicated Lower School faculty, has developed an informed curricular program. This Quaker curriculum provides our community with developmentally-appropriate materials that allow the students access to understanding the history of Quakerism. The curriculum also guides students in developing ownership of the six Quaker Testimonies known as the “SPICES”: Simplicity, Peace, Integrity, Community, Equality and Stewardship.
Each year, the Lower School focuses on two of these testimonies to guide our work. Study of these testimonies increases students’ understanding of Quaker history and principles, as well as their appreciation of their dual roles as members of both our local and global communities. This year’s testimonies are Stewardship and Equality.
- GFS Faith and Practice, 2007
- Simplicity: Activities and possessions should not overwhelm us.
- Peace: Each life is precious and unique.
- Integrity: We are seekers of the truth.
- Community: We care for each other.
- Equality: We are all equal before God.
- Stewardship: We use God’s gifts wisely.