Elementary school or primary school is the first formal primary education for children and it is classified as elementary by state and local practice and is generally made up of any span of grades 1-6. In most countries of the world, primary education is considered necessary and is provided free by the government while in other countries it is left to the parents to provide.
In India, the constitution of the country provides that each and every child receive free and compulsory primary education till the age of 14. The scope of primary education is different in different countries and the boundaries between primary middle and secondary educations are generally blurred.
In the traditional system of elementary education students of a class enter a school at the lowest grade and pass from class to class generally as a group till they pass out of the school to enter either middle or secondary level of schooling. In this system the children belonging to a class have a class room or home room and a class teacher who teaches most subjects, apart from such specialty subjects as music and physical education. As the students climb to higher classes the specialty subjects might increase to include math and science and other subjects.
This system gives an opportunity to students to bind as groups and cultivate relationships that form and harden into life long friendships. The system of having one teacher teach most subjects helps build a close relationship with the teacher also.
Recently, the schools in Western countries have been experimenting with different alternative teaching methods in elementary schools. Some schools have come up with the idea of putting several classes together and letting a heterogeneous mix have its own effect on the students
Another popular alternative to the traditional system is the experiment that has the children move from class to class for different subjects while the subject teachers stay in their respective rooms.
Corporal punishment has now been banned or discontinued in most schools generally in Western countries.