Curriculum

Teacher’s College Reading and Writing Workshop

We use the workshop model consistently across the content areas:

  1. Independent Reading:  Students read a book at the independent level.  The teacher confers with students during this time.
  2. Independent Writing:  Students maintain work folders.  Writers Notebooks that reflect students’ ideas and insights.  Through genre studies, author studies and craft units of study, students work carefully to change their raw material into published pieces.
  3. Shared Reading:  Short texts (poems, rhymes, songs, articles) are carefully chosen by the teacher and presented in large text, placed on overhead transparency or provided for each student.  The text is chunked by the teacher to model specific reading and writing strategies.
  4. Interactive Writing:  In the lower grades teachers invite students to take risks in recording their oral sentences into written texts.
  5. Read Aloud:  The teacher chooses a text, usually grade level or one grade higher, and reads aloud the text to the class.  The teacher models fluent reading behavior and the skills, strategies, and habits of good readers.
  6. Word Study:  Depending upon grade, may be phonics or word study including prefixes and suffixes, root words, word families, etc.
  7. Guided Reading: The teacher leads small group instruction based on assessed needs.

Math Connects

5 Keys to Success:

  1. Backmapping: College Board research indicates that approximately 80% of students who successfully complete Algebra 1 and Geometry by 10th grade attend and succeed in college.  Math connects was conceptualized and designed by backmapping with the final result in mind – students success in Algebra 1 and beyond.
  2. Balanced, In-Depth Content: Math connects was designed to specially target the skills and topics that give students the most difficult (e.g. Problem Solving) in each grade span.
  3. Ongoing Assessment: Math Connects includes diagnostic, formative and summative assessments; data-driven instruction; intervention options; performance tracking; remediation; acceleration and enrichment tools throughout the program.
  4. Intervention and Differentiated Instruction: a. Daily Intervention: Teachers have the option of using the Reteach masters and Alternative Strategy suggestions to help teach the concepts from a different learning style. b. Strategic Intervention: Teachers can utilize the various intervention tips and ancillary materials (e.g. Strategic Intervention guide, study guide) c. Intensive Intervention: Students who are two ore more years below grade level Math Triumphs (component of Math Connects) provides detailed instructions, vocabulary support and data driven decision making to help students succeed.
  5. Professional Development: Math Connects includes many opportunities for teacher professional development.  Teachers can utilize various formats – video, online and on-sit instruction are fully aligned and articulated from Kindergarten through Algebra 2. - Math Connects is also vertically aligned with content and New York State standards which helps connect information with the grade level below and grade level above.
    • Instructional Design:
      • Introduce
      • Teach
      • Practice
      • Assess Research:
        1. Program Development Research: evaluates state and local standards, qualitative market research and academic content research
        2. Formative Research: pedagogical research base, classroom field tests, teacher advisory boards and academic consultants and reviewers (field test indicated that students of the Math Connects program had higher pre-test to post-test gains than students using other textbook programs)
        3. Summative Research: evidence of increased exam scores, quasi-experimental program efficacy research, longitudinal studies and qualitative program evaluations. - Please visit the following website for a detailed explanation of the instructional program: http://www.mhpdonline.com/tus/k2na/montage.html

Fundations - Wilson Language Basic K-3

  • Fundations provides students of various learning abilities with a foundation for reading and spelling. It equips teachers with the skills and tools needed to present a structured, sequential, and cumulative phonics/spelling program using multisensory teaching strategies.
  • Wilson offers many years of systematic and explicit instruction to Kindergarten – Third Grade classroom.  Wilson Fundations presents research-based materials and strategies vital to a comprehensive reading and writing program.
  • Certain skills that Fundations develops are: Letter formation, phonological and phonemic awareness, sound mastery, phonics, vocabulary, irregular (trick) word instruction, fluency, comprehension and written composition
  • Please visit the following website for more information about this instructional program: http://www.fundations.com/  

Music

The choral music curriculum incorporates sound elementary pedogical practices such as the workshop model with the work of Zoltan Kodaly and Karl Orff – practitioners who have written programs with specific musical goals in mind.  The focus of the program is to introduce our students to the fulfillment available from both the participation of group singing and the thrill of performance.

FOSS

FOSS is a research-based science curriculum for grades K–8 developed at the Lawrence Hall of Science, University of California at Berkeley. FOSS is also an ongoing research project dedicated to improving the learning and teaching of science. The FOSS project began over 20 years ago during a time of growing concern that our nation was not providing young students with an adequate science education. The FOSS program materials are designed to meet the challenge of providing meaningful science education for all students in diverse American classrooms and to prepare them for life in the 21st century. Development of the FOSS program was, and continues to be, guided by advances in the understanding of how youngsters think and learn.

Science is an active enterprise, made active by our human capacity to think. Scientific knowledge advances when scientists observe objects and events, think about how they relate to what is known, test their ideas in logical ways, and generate explanations that integrate the new information into the established order. Thus the scientific enterprise is both what we know (content) and how we come to know it (process). The best way for students to appreciate the scientific enterprise, learn important scientific concepts, and develop the ability to think critically is to actively construct ideas through their own inquiries, investigations, and analyses. The FOSS program was created to engage students in these processes as they explore the natural world.