Bringing back the joy of reading & writing

Academic Upper Elementary

Back to Academic Year Programs

Upper Elementary for Academic Year



Our classes for our upper elementary students for 5th to 6th graders are two hours long.  Students come in once a week.  The maximum number of students per class is generally 9.  These classes are categorized as enrichment classes.  Enrichment classes are for students who are at or above grade level and want to go above and beyond what they are learning in their regular school classes. I

Our Upper Elementary Reading and Writing Program is broken up into two semesters.  However, a new student can begin our program at any time and does not have to wait for the next unit to begin.


August 29, 2017 to January 20, 2018

During our fall semester, the 5th and 6th grade students will read with the purpose of building literary analysis skills. We will teach students a structured process for decoding more complex language so they can draw conclusions about figurative language, analyze imagery created through literary devices, and articulate the under-the-surface ideas found within the text, all of which require more inferential and interpretative thinking.  

During the semester, the 5th and 6th grade students will practice the basic five-paragraph literary analysis essay structure to analyze the author’s message, the literary work’s tone, or the overall effect on the reader. The essay will include the introduction paragraph, two to three elaborative supporting paragraphs with evidence and embedded quotes, and a concluding paragraph.  To do so, they will practice using the full writing process: prewriting, organizing, drafting, revising, editing.

To start our semester, the 5th and 6th grade students will write a few poems to develop the concept of tone and mood through word choice, detail, imagery, and sentence structures. Writing poems will give students a chance to explore the creative side of language and description.


January 22, 2018 to June 1, 2018

During our spring semester, the 5th and 6th grade students will read through a collection of short stories, either historical or realistic.  Through close-reading techniques, students will hunt for narrative technique (sensory detail description, action sequence, backstory, flashback, dialogue, interior monologue, point-of-view, and suspense) and explain their importance to character development, plot structure, and developing theme.  Students will analyze the main character’s personality and his/her changes from beginning to end.  Students will analyze the type of conflicts included in the stories they read and the themes that each conflict represents. 

Throughout this semester, students will write personal narratives, or stories that come from their everyday memories. Taking the same written strategies from the semester readings, students will practice narrative techniques to enhance their storytelling.  We will provide the structure to ensure that students create a logical, clear, and focused storyline that includes strong descriptive detail of the people, places, and things in their story, and an action-built plot to keep the story moving from beginning to end.  Students will brainstorm elements needed to ensure a theme or overall message is included to connect the ideas of their story. Students will practice using the full writing process (prewriting, organizing, drafting, revising, editing).


Our Academic Year Program is broken up into two semesters.  However, a new student can begin our program at any time and does not have to wait for the next semester to begin.  Students come in once a week.  Please choose from one of the following classes:

  • Tuesday - 3:20 to 5:20 p.m.
  • Tuesday - 5:30 to 7:30 p.m.
  • Wednesday - 2:15 to 4:15 p.m.
  • Wednesday - 4:30 to 6:30 p.m.
  • Thursday - 3:20 to 5:20 p.m.
  • Thursday - 5:30 to 7:30 p.m.
  • Friday - 4:30 to 6:30 p.m. 

1st Semester

August 29, 2017 to January 20, 2018


2nd Semester

January 22, 2018 to June 1, 2018



Thanksgiving Holiday : November 20, 2017 to November 24, 2017

Winter Break : December 25, 2017 to January 5, 2018

Spring Break : April 2, 2018 to April 6, 2018

Fees, Information & Policies

  1. How much does it cost? $45 per hour.  Our classes are 2 hours per week for a total of $90 per week.
  2. What do I need to pay when I register?  To register, you will need to pay a one-time registration fee of $25 on Eventbrite.  Upon registration, you will also be charged the registration deposit for the first 4 weekly sessions of $360 (or $320 if a sibling discount applies). The registration deposit will be applied to the first 4 sessions.  This amount is non-refundable. Please note that if you start sessions in the middle of our 4-session billing cycle, your first invoice will be reduced by any credit from your registration deposit.
  3. How do I register?  There are 2 simple steps to the registration process:
    • $25 Registration Fee. Please register online by clicking on the “Register Now” button to reserve your child’s spot in the class and pay the $25 registration fee.  The registration fee is nonrefundable. After you pay the registration fee on Eventbrite, you will automatically be directed to the Registration Form.
    • Complete the Registration Form. After you pay the registration fee, the registration system will automatically direct you to the Registration Form.  The Registration Form will require parent’s contact information, student information, and the credit card authorization for the recurring 4-session payments.  Your registration will not be accepted until the Registration Form is completed and submitted. Upon receipt of the Registration Form, we will charge your credit card the registration deposit for the first 4 weeks of $360 (or $320 if a sibling discount applies).  This is nonrefundable.
    • After you pay the registration fee and complete the registration form, we will send a Welcome Email within 2 to 3 days to confirm your child’s enrollment in our program.
  4. What are the terms of service? When you register you must agree to our Instructional Agreement.  Please review it carefully.  You may also download a pdf copy of the Instructional Agreement.
  5. How do I pay for the fees?  Our billing cycle is every 4 sessions (not every four weeks).  You will not be billed for holiday weeks.  Every 4-session period, we will automatically bill your credit card for the next 4 sessions.
  6. Do I have to pay by credit card?  Yes, and we do require a credit card to be kept on file for automatic billing.  The online credit card form is secured by SSL protocol and data encryption through Formstack.
  7. Do you offer sibling discounts?  Yes. For students with siblings in our program, the hourly rate is $40 for the additional sibling.  For example, if there are 2 children from one family, one child will be at $45 per hour and the sibling will be at the reduced rate of $40 per hour.
  8. What is the class size?   Up to 8 or 9 students.  However, some classes could be larger.
  9. How do I get on the waitlist if the class is full?  To be put on a waitlist for any of our classes, please submit a waitlist request and provide the requested information.  During the beginning of the academic year, we are always adding new classes so please submit a waitlist request.  We will pull students off the waitlist first when we open new classes.
  10. Is there a minimum contract period?  There is no minimum contract period.  We do not obligate you to any long term contract, but you must give 30 days prior written notice to withdraw from classes.
  11. What is your absence policy? There are NO REFUNDS  for absences.  However, you may email us at to request a make-up class for another day during the same week. Make-up classes are not guaranteed and are subject to availability.
  12. What if I am late to pickup my child?  As stated in our Instructional Agreement, if the student in not picked up within 15 minutes after the end of class, there will be a $25 fee for each occurrence.
  13. Is there homework?  Students at Bridges will not receive any homework.  All work is done at Bridges.
  14. How many times a week does my child have class at Bridges?  Students come to Bridges once a week.
  15. Can my child bring a snack to Bridges?  In consideration of some of our students that have severe food allergies that could be life-threatening, we have a strict policy of limiting the type of snacks that your child may bring to Bridges.  Here is a list of approved snacks. All other snacks are strictly prohibited. Please do not give your child any snacks to bring to Bridges that are not on this list.  This list is periodically updated.
  16. Do you require an assessment prior to registration?  No, an assessment is not required prior to registration.  It is only necessary for students with reading & writing skills significantly below grade level.  If you have any questions, or would like to discuss your child’s reading & writing skills, we offer free consultations with our education director.  Please submit a request by click on the Questions tab on the bottom of the page.