benchmarks


KINDERGARTEN

Language Arts

What we do:    

  • Develop concepts of print, phonemic awareness, phonics, and knowledge of story language

  • Pre-reading and writing skills

  • Practice early reading strategies: using picture clues, beginning sounds, and patterns

  • Play with rhyme and rhythm

  • Approximate writing by drawing and labeling

  • Use invented spelling

How we do it:   

In kindergarten, students begin to build the foundational skills for reading through interactive read-alouds, shared readings of poems and songs, and daily reading centers. Students develop their phonological awareness, early literacy concepts, letter and sound knowledge, and understanding of how words work. They are supported with a balance of whole-group, small-group, and one-to-one instruction that allows each individual student to become a more competent reader and writer. Letter formation is introduced and practiced using the Handwriting Without Tears curriculum.


Math

What we do:

  • Count and compare numbers to 100, with a special focus on numbers to 20

  • Represents addition and subtraction with objects, drawing or verbal explanations

  • Sort, compare, and draw shapes

 

How we do it:

The kindergarten program blends problem-solving and skill building with teaching strategies and objectives. Combining whole group, small group and independent activities, instruction supports the development of mathematical thinking for students through exploration with manipulatives, testing and reasoning.


Science

What we do:

  • Demonstrate curiosity through questioning, observation, and investigation

  • Make hypotheses from observations and information

  • Demonstrate understanding of content and key concepts

 

How we do it:

Children are encouraged to discuss their work in small groups and during whole class discussions. Experiments are hands on and investigations are driven by student interests. Field trips and expert visitors encourage deeper connections to learning.



Social Studies

What we do:

  • Mindfulness practice

  • Exploration of the school community

  • Essential concepts of family and culture

 

How we do it:

Throug h group projects, discussions, classroom play, literature, and field trips, children learn to interact positively with others while building the self-esteem, confidence, and self-control necessary for learning the skills and work habits to be successful learners and members of the school community.

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1ST GRADE

Language Arts

What we do:

  • Compare and contrast and text-to-self and text-to-text connections

  • Setting, sequencing and making predictions

  • Read aloud with appropriate fluency

  • Demonstrate phonemic awareness through spelling strategies and decoding of words

  • Use nouns, adjectives and verbs when writing

  • Print legibly while spacing letters, words and sentences appropriately

 

How we do it:

Students are immersed in materials that are at their independent reading level. They are supported with a balance of whole-group, small-group and individualized instruction to progress to the next level. Students are exposed to a variety of genres, comprehension strategies, and decoding skills. Through a balance of whole-group, small-group and one-on-one instruction, each student is supported in becoming a more competent writer. Teachers introduce high-frequency words, common spelling patterns, and word solving strategies. Students practice what they complete during literacy centers throughout the day. Letter formation is reviewed and practiced using the Handwriting Without Tears curriculum.


Math

What we do:

  • Add and subtract with numbers to 20, including story/word problems

  • Become fluent with addition and subtraction facts to 20

  • Count to 120; learn about place value (ones, tens, hundreds)

  • Identify, sort, and draw shapes

  • Use money, tell time, learn basic measurements

  • Data and graphing/patterns

  • Plane figures, solid shapes and symmetry

How we do it:

Instruction blends problem-solving and skill building with teaching strategies and objectives. The program combines whole group, small group and independent activities and supports the development of mathematical thinking for students through exploration with manipulatives, testing and reasoning.


Science

What we do:

  • Life Science: investigate plants and seeds; examining their needs, their habitats, their adaptations, and their importance to people

  • Physical Science: explore liquids and solids

  • Earth Science: rocks (pebbles, sand and silt)

  • Introduce and practice the Scientific Method

 

How we do it:

Students practice the scientific process by asking questions, making and recording observations, exploring and experimenting with materials, and researching. Read-alouds,independent reading, field trips and expert visitors encourage deeper connections to learning.


Social Studies

What we do:

  • Distinguish opinion from fact

  • All About Me and Our Families

  • Geography and map skills

  • Holidays around the world

  • Non-violence/kindness and compassion

  • Learn about people who make a difference

 

How we do it:

Through whole and small group discussions, project- based learning, and hands-on investigations, students immerse themselves in a variety of topics.

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2ND GRADE

Language Arts

What we do:

  • Know and apply grade level phonics and word analysis skills when decoding words

  • Read with sufficient accuracy and fluency to support comprehension

  • Use words, illustrations, and context clues to identify characters, setting, and plot

  • Ask and answer questions to demonstrate understanding of a text

  • Retell stories and demonstrate an understanding of the main ideas

  • Write legibly and use appropriate spacing

  • Use capitalization and punctuation appropriately

  • Use letter sound knowledge to spell words

  • Identify and use spelling patterns

  • Use the writing process effectively: brainstorm, draft, revise, edit, and publish

  • Demonstrate use of character, plot, setting and conflict in fictional writing

  • Communicate ideas clearly in writing

 

How we do it:

Students are immersed in materials that are at their independent reading level and are supported with a balance of whole-group, small-group and individualized instruction to progress to the next level. Students are exposed to a variety of genres, comprehension strategies, and decoding skills. Through a balance of whole-group, small-group and one-on-one instruction, each student is supported while becoming a more competent writer. Teachers introduce high-frequency words, common spelling patterns, and word solving strategies. Students practice what they complete during literacy centers and throughout the day.


Math

What we do:

  • Make sense of problems and persevere in solving them

  • Represent thinking with visual models

  • Communicate mathematical thinking effectively

  • Count by 1's, 2’s, 5’s, 10's and 100's up to 1,000

  • Understand and identify place value to thousands

  • Add fluently within 20

  • Subtract fluently within 20

  • Represent and solve addition and subtraction problems within 100

  • Describe and classify regular and irregular 2-D and 3-D shapes

  • Identify the fractional parts of whole shapes

  • Measure and compare in standard and metric units

  • Tell and write time to nearest 5 minutes

  • Solve word problems using money

  • Recognize, extend, and create patterns

  • Solve addition and subtraction problems with unknowns in all positions

 

How we do it:

Our curriculum blends problem-solving and skill building with a variety of teaching strategies and objectives. The program combines whole group, small group and independent activities and supports the development of mathematical thinking for students through exploration with manipulatives,testing and reasoning.


Science

What we do:

  • Discuss the shapes of mountains, valleys, and coasts

  • The plants and animals that live in these shapes

  • The forces that cause them to change (NGSS Standards)

  • Explore balance, motion, and stability

  • Develop an understanding about simple machines

  • Insects

 

How we do it:

Students plan and conduct simple investigations, employ tools and techniques to gather data,  and use data to construct reasonable explanations. They construct an understanding of science concepts through their own investigations and analyses, using laboratory equipment, student readings, and interactive technology.


Social Studies

What we do:

  • Distinguish opinion from fact

  • Demonstrate basic map skills

  • Understand cause and effect relationships

  • Demonstrate understanding of content and key concepts in current units

  • Investigate past figures who have left a lasting impact on the Earth

 

How we do it:

Second graders learn to identify the overall “big picture” ideas, select and use appropriate sources to answer questions, draw a conclusion about the main idea and supporting details, and synthesize information through simple note-taking strategies. Through whole and small group discussions, project based learning, and hands-on investigations, students are engaged in their learning.

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