Elementary School Information
Elementary art instruction occurs every other week and is aligned to four anchor standards: creating, presenting, connecting, and responding. Students create artwork using the elements and principles of design, and present them in various art shows throughout the year. Students explore the connections between art and our global society through art creation, discussion, response writing, and hands-on activities.
Dual Language Program
Elementary dual language instruction focuses on supporting students in their attainment of biliteracy in Spanish and English. These programs are currently offered at Golfview Elementary School, Lakewood Elementary School, Liberty Elementary School, and Meadowdale Elementary School.
Dual language students follow a specific language allocation model depending on their grade level. Based on the language allocation, content areas are taught in English or Spanish for a specific amount of time.
English as a Second Language (ESL)
Elementary English language learner students are in a general education class and receive language support through the ESL teacher. Eligibility for english language support is based off of student performance on an annual assessment.
English Language Arts
Elementary English language arts instruction allows students to foster an understanding and working knowledge of foundational skills including concepts about print, alphabetic principles and conventions of writing with the goal of ensuring students are effective readers. As students progress throughout elementary school, they will read more challenging texts to strengthen their understanding of what they read while building a strong vocabulary knowledge. Students will also begin to write for specific purposes, including: to inform, explain, or tell a story.
Integration of Science and Social Studies In K-2 Literacy
In the 2022-23 school year, the decision was made to increase literacy learning time for students in Grades K-2. This work was accomplished by keeping the start and end times of the school day the same and by reallocating minutes from unique science and social studies learning time so that these subject areas could be woven into literacy learning. This approach is a research-based practice that supports students in building background knowledge and supports language acquisition for English learners.
Our new literacy materials are designed with the integration of science and social studies in mind. Every grade level has a “Knowledge Sequence,” during which students build “coherent, sequenced background knowledge.” An infographic designed by the publishers that indicates which social studies and science topics ar e taught during each grade level can be viewed by clicking here. One example of how there are science topics woven across four grade levels is shown here:
Grade K: The Five Senses
Grade 1: The Human Body
Grade 2: The Human Body: Building Blocks and Nutrition
Grade 3: The Human Body: Systems and Senses
Other examples of this purposeful integration in design exist in both social studies and science. D300 Literacy Curriculum Frameworks provide staff guidance on some topics identified in the link. Due to the incredible volume of text material for student reading, some units are purposefully omitted or consolidated.
Elementary health instruction provides students with the ability to understand the basic components and importance of being healthy and staying safe. Topics include body systems, hygiene, nutrition, safety, social skills, fitness, and goal setting.
Elementary math instruction will focus on number sense and algebraic thinking in order for students to develop conceptual understanding. In the primary grade levels, students will make tens, practice addition and subtraction, and progress into multiplication and division.
Fractions will become a priority in the intermediate grades. In all grade levels, students will focus on problem-solving, geometry, and measurement and data. Students will learn to reason mathematically, explain their thinking, and justify their answers.
Elementary music instruction occurs twice a week and is aligned to four anchor standards: creating, performing, connecting, and responding. Students learn the principles of beat, rhythm, melody, harmony, and music notation while creating and performing music. Students explore the connections between music and our global society through song, discussion, response writing, and hands-on activities.
Students in fifth grade can elect to participate in band or orchestra. Students can choose flute, clarinet, oboe, trumpet, trombone, violin, viola, cello, or bass. Students will develop basic musicianship, note reading skills, and will participate in performance experiences. Instrument registration occurs in the beginning of 5th grade.
Elementary physical education instruction focuses on basic motor and object control skills. Through the usage of engaging games and activities, the physical education program educates students on health enhancing behaviors. Focus will include, but is not limited to, locomotor movements, striking, kicking, throwing, catching, dribbling, volleying, and fitness.
Skills for Success
The elementary Skills for Success class supports students in becoming confident and responsible learners. Once a week from kindergarten through fifth grade, students will participate in activities to support executive functioning skills with an emphasis on goal setting, listening and speaking, collaboration, problem-solving, financial literacy, and keyboarding. As students progress into fourth and fifth grade, they will also engage in college and career exploration.
Elementary social studies instruction allows students to become more prepared for the challenges of college, career, and civics. In the primary grades, students explore the community around them and move into an exploration of their nation in the intermediate grades.
Students will learn to interpret maps, examine sources, and will be exposed to concepts in history, geography, civics, and economics through experiences in the social sciences. Social studies instruction will also help support literacy skills through critical reading and writing instruction.
Elementary STEM instruction occurs every other week and allows students to engage in inquiry-based activities specific to the disciplines of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics. These disciplines are taught in an integrated manner and provide students with hands-on, problem-solving experiences related to scientific phenomenon.