Robert E. Lamberton Elementary has dedicated teachers and staff, engaging class assignments and programs where students are supported to reach academic excellence.
Located at 7501 Woodbine Ave. in the Overbrook Park section of Philadelphia, the K-8 school provides its 400 students with the educational skills and tools to help them reach their highest potential.
“We want to be able to welcome our students into an environment where they feel they are connected with the teachers and staff and that there is high quality instruction taking place in every classroom,” said principal Antoinette Powell.
“One of the things that we’ve seen in the classroom is that this year the children’s skill sets are in different places,” Powell said. “We’re really trying to help our young people feel more secure about their learning and helping our kids own their learning by taking responsibility on their own.
“We focus on Tier 1 instruction.” she added. “We utilize small group instruction and intervention programs. With the grouping of our kids in small group instruction we really drive what they need at the moment during class and on a regular basis.”
Another goal the school has is to increase students’ percentage in literacy and math.
“We want to be able to increase literacy and math by six percentage points by the end of the year, but that’s going to take some time,” Powell said.
Lamberton launched a schoolwide PBIS (Positive Behavioral Interventions and Support) program virtually last year. The school was also recognized by the state for utilizing the PBIS program effectively.
“Our core values are to be respectful, organized, accountable and resilient,” Powell said. “We have our monthly and weekly incentives and a school store.
“We’ve also had different things like dance parties and kids going outside for extra recess,” she added. “Students also have Lamberton pride dollars where the kids can purchase different things at the school store.”
Among the points of pride at Lamberton include quarterly dance and stage productions, dance, instrumental music and visual arts instruction, intramural sports, University of Pennsylvania Educational Talent Search, safe haven after school care, Scripps Spelling Bee and Philadelphia TEC(Technology Expo and Competition) Showcase.
“We connected with a local artist to paint relevant and current murals within the school,” Powell said. “It was important for our kids to come back to a space that was going to push them and focus on owning their learning.
“Our middle schoolers are leading parent teacher conferences,” Powell said. “We have a fun phenomenal dance teacher who does a lot of work before and after school with our students.
“Our kids are taking leadership within the school so we’re building student capacity around that,” she added. “We have the full launch of PBIS and we also started our student government. We want to increase student voice and student agency within the school.”
To help students prepare for the next grade level, Lamberton teachers and staff stress the importance of self-advocacy and time management.
“The most important thing for our kids that are transitioning into middle school is being able to work with different teachers,” Powell said. “Instead of having self-contained classes, beginning in grades three our teachers are subject specific or content specific so that the kids have an opportunity to see more than one teacher.
“For our middle schoolers who will eventually transition to high school, we go over the importance of time management, how to be accountable, and what the expectations are from teachers,” Powell said.
“With them, there is also the advocacy piece,” she added. “We want them to be able to speak to the work that they’re doing, but also advocate for themselves when they feel that they can either be doing more or if they don’t quite understand something.”
Powell said she wants her students to leave Lamberton understanding who they are as individuals.
“I want them to leave Lamberton believing they have something to give to the world and knowing that they can be great,” Powell said. “I want them to be able to walk out of here knowing who they are and that we provided them with the skills and tools to build on who they want to be.”