The students at Brookside Lower School learn all the basics—reading and writing, math and science, geography and spelling. But Brookside days are also spent investigating life beyond the blackboard. Students are encouraged to explore the creative outlets of painting and printmaking, weaving and pottery, poetry and language.

In addition to the creative arts, Brookside incorporates nature into each child’s daily experience so they can learn to appreciate and feel a part of their environment. Student field trips range from visiting Cranbrook Institute of Science to discover how bees make honey, to fourth graders exploring Mackinac Island on an overnight trip.

Brookside emphasizes a community where each student's unique contribution adds to the greater community as well. Students learn through experience and observation how respect for others, for the community and for the world are all hallmarks of the Brookside family.

Cranbrook strives to build a strong community.  At Brookside this can be seen in many ways.  This can be seen every morning when older Brookside students escort younger students to before school care.  It can be seen in our learning partners program where homeroom classes are paired with either older or younger students.  Several times throughout the year learning partners meet to do projects, celebrate holidays, or share books they have published.  These traditions of Brookside help build personal and social responsibility while allowing students to contribute to the community.

Specialist Classes
Brookside students are exposed to the arts and sciences by specialist teachers that are passionate about their specific area.  Our specialists provide students with the opportunity to think abstractly and engage in their subject matter.  In grades 1 through 5 students receive instruction in art, computers, drama, library, general music, physical education, science and Spanish.  Instrumental music is available for fourth and fifth grade students.  With the exception of instrumental music, students visit specialist classes with their entire homeroom class.

Lunch Program
Lunch is served family style in the Brookside dining room at tables of seven to nine. Faculty members serve as table heads, and students assist with clearing the table. In addition to getting to know students in another setting, faculty members take advantage of the opportunity to reinforce social graces and monitor food choices. An entrée and side dish are served at the table, and students may also select from a wide variety of options at the salad bar. The menu meets or exceeds USDA and state mandates for school lunch programs.  All lunches and snacks during the school day are provided by the school and are included in the price of tuition.

Learn More!

To receive more information, including our school brochure and an application, complete the brief on-line inquiry form.

To learn more about the admission process for Brookside Lower School, please visit the Applying page.

Why Lower School?

After School

List of 1 items.

  • Brookside After School

    The focus of Brookside’s after school programs is to provide expanded academic enrichment, as well as creative and athletic opportunities for children who remain past the scheduled school day. Parents who work longer hours have the option of enrolling their children in our After Care program where children are supervised by Brookside staff members, treated to snacks, and partake in organized activities.
    Read More


List of 6 frequently asked questions.

  • Q. What is special about your school?

    George Booth started our school in 1922 with the mission of having an equal emphasis on the arts and the academics, a mission that continues to make us unique today. Therefore, we not only have a strong, well-articulated academic curriculum, but we also provide students with broad exposure to and experiences with the arts.
  • Q. What is the average class size?

    Class size is limited to eighteen students in grades 1-5. Because some classrooms in our lovely historic building are small, each grade level has one class of fourteen students or two classes of sixteen students.
  • Q. Will my child be challenged? Will my child receive extra help?

    Teachers continually assess students’ strengths and skill mastery and use this information to plan instruction. Individual needs are addressed within the context of the curriculum and the classroom. A full time reading enrichment teacher provides diagnostic testing and remedial assistance for students in senior kindergarten through third grade.
  • Q. How do you teach reading?

    Homeroom teachers use a comprehensive approach to literacy instruction. Ongoing assessment informs teaching decisions to ensure a match between students’ developmental levels and instruction. Using quality children’s literature, teachers in grades one through five incorporate the following components: reading aloud; shared reading, in which teacher and student read texts together; guided reading, in which meaningful contexts are used to teach reading strategies; and independent reading. Writing instruction is an integral part of the literacy program as reading and writing are viewed as mutually supportive. Teachers focus on content, organization, style, and writing mechanics as they develop students’ ability to write for different audiences and purposes.
  • Q. What math program do you use?

    Everyday Mathematics, an enriched elementary curriculum developed by the University of Chicago Mathematics Project, is used in grades 1-5. In addition to mastering concepts and computational skills, students are encouraged to employ strategies to solve problems, link past experiences to new concepts, work cooperatively, and apply mathematics to their everyday lives.
  • Q. Are you a laptop school?

    Rather than requiring families to buy laptop computers, Cranbrook Schools are in the process of locating SmartBoard technology in as many classrooms as possible. SmartBoards are touch-sensitive white boards than can be programmed and managed through a connected computer. They enhance the teaching/learning process by supporting students to actively construct understanding in a wide variety of educational disciplines.

Cranbrook Schools

·39221 Woodward ·Bloomfield Hills, Michigan 48304
Cranbrook Educational Community admits students and makes its services, activities, and education programs available to students without regard to sex, race, color, creed, religion, national or ethnic origin, disability, sexual orientation, or any other protected status as required by state or federal law.

Cranbrook Schools is a private college prep boarding school located in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan, near Detroit, consisting of three schools; an elementary school with a private preschool, a single gender middle school with a distinct boys middle school and girls middle school, along with a co-ed college prep private boarding high school. Cranbrook is regarded as one of the top private schools in Michigan. Many of Cranbrook’s students attend top universities and colleges.

Emergency Drill reports available here.