Peggy
What's the different between "elementary school" and "primary school"? I think these two word means same, but why have two words that looks different to describe a same school?
Feb 2, 2016 2:46 PM
Answers · 10
Hello. They are the same and used interchangeably in the US.
February 2, 2016
'Elementary school' is rarely used in Britain. 'Primary school' is the usual term.
February 2, 2016
In the United States, there is no difference. Actually, in the United States education is highly decentralized and it is hard to make any generalizations at all. That's probably why Christa's experience is different from mine. In the United States--in my experience!--"primary school" is often used as a general description of one tier of the educational system. However, the word "primary" is not used as part of the name of any individual school. It is very common for the schools themselves to be named "elementary school:" "Broadmoor Elementary School," "Leopold Higgins Elementary School," etc. As to why there two names--"primary" and "elementary"--for the same thing, I can't say. These things are matters of history, tradition, and local custom.
February 3, 2016
The difference is America and Great Britain :D In America, we do not say "primary school." It is more of a British word. I know the comment above me says that they are interchangeable in America, but I rarely hear Americans say "primary school." It's not a popular phrase. If someone did, I would assume they either visited Britain, they are trying to sound fancy, or they were trying to be funny. Here's an example: Tom: "Where did you go to school as a kid?" Ben: "I went to Primary school in Idaho." Tom: "Primary school? Wow, that must have been a fancy school or something..." ------------------------------------------or----------------------------------------- Tom: "Where did you go to school as a kid?" Ben: "I went to elementary school in Idaho." Tom: "Oh ok cool. I went to elementary school in Alabama." haha so my example are a bit of an exaggeration to show the feelings or thoughts behind using each word.
February 2, 2016
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Peggy
Language Skills
Chinese (Mandarin), English, Korean
Learning Language
English