Academics

SJA Pics - Lori Diez - Msgnr Thx 2012 171Primary/Elementary

Students 4 to 8 years of age require developmentally appropriate teaching practices which encompasses meeting children where they are and recognizing that each child is a unique individual. Providing activities and curriculum appropriate to each child’s age and developmental status and ensuring that goals are both challenging and achievable, is the best practice for primary students.

Teachers provide a balance of large and small group activities and one-to-one activities, to encourage both group and individual relationships. Children have opportunities to play and interact with other children, which builds friendships and develops social skills, such as working together and taking turns.

Research tells us that the human brain grows as a result of learning and experience. When a new skill or concept is internalized, a brain connection is formed. In order for a connection to become permanent the learning must be reinforced using different learning modalities. Each child learns differently. Some learn best by listening (auditory learners) while others have to handle something physically (visual learners) before they can understand it. Others learn best by moving (kinesthetic learners). Touching and feeling things and transforming ideas into movement boosts memory and understanding. Our approach in the lower grades to maximize learning is to provide learning opportunities for children with every learning style. This approach allows all children (listeners, lookers, and movers) to be successful learners.

Primary (Grades K-2)Reading Curriculum
Superkids Reading Program written and published by Rowland Reading Foundation is a core reading program designed for kindergarten through second grade that looks like no other and works like no other, with a cast of characters that children love. Superkids Reading Program is a comprehensive reading and language arts curriculum with phonics at its core.
As Superkids builds strong phonics and decoding skills, it simultaneously integrates instruction in comprehension, vocabulary, and fluency. The program also develops students’ skill in writing, spelling, grammar, usage, and mechanics. As a result, Superkids produces students who can read and spell accurately and fluently, readers who can comprehend an author’s ideas, and writers who can express their own ideas with confidence and precision.

Elementary (Grades 3-5) Reading Curriculum
SRA Imagine It! is a comprehensive reading and language arts program used in grades 3-5. It is built on decades of research and field testing.  This research foundation is the key to all instructional areas including, phonemic awareness, phonics, fluency, vocabulary, comprehension, writing, and inquiry. This program integrates science and social studies skills within the thematic units.

Primary and Elementary Math Curriculum
GO MATH! published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, is used for grades K-5. This curriculum has student books as well as ebooks that can be accessed online. It provides engaging lessons using Interactive Whiteboard activities, interactive digital manipulatives, and hands-on manipulatives, real world videos, and animated math games and models that can be used by students for reviewing at home.

Primary Science and Social Studies Curriculum

Science4Us Curriculum is a web-based program that provides access to K-2nd grade science. It correlates to National and State Standards, integrates math and language arts and has virtual and hands-on activities.

BrainPop is online software that provides social studies and science content using animated videos and thought-provoking questions and fun activities.

Elementary Science and Social Studies Curriculum
Science and Social Studies curricula in grades 3-5 follow the Next Generation Sunshine State Standards. The content is taught using hands-on activities, lessons designed on students’ LearnLab tablets and Smart Technology lessons. Science and social studies standards are integrated in reading curriculum.
Primary and Elementary Religion Curriculum
Sadlier WE BELIEVE with PROJECT DISCIPLE is used in grades K-8. This spiral curriculum follows the Diocese of Orlando Curriculum Framework for faith formation.

Middle School

Early adolescence is a time of many physical, mental, emotional, and social changes. Current research indicates that middle school students need classroom environments that are both academically challenging and supportive of students academic development (Anderman, Patrick, Hruda, & Linnenbrink, 2002; Turner et al., 2002).

Middle school students learn best in learner-centered classrooms that involve higher-order thinking, positive relations, personal independence, and instruction adapted to their individual needs. At this level, students are more capable of directing their cognitive processes, using strategies when learning something new. It is at this time that students develop note-taking and organizational skills, and learn how to distinguish between important and unimportant information, develop good summaries, and analyze their comprehension of content. Academics, sports, extracurricular activities and service to the community are emphasized at this level, preparing the students for high school.

Middle School (Grades 6-8) English Language Arts Curriculum
SpringBoard is the ELA curriculum used in middle school. The College Board’s college and career readiness program is for all students in grades 6-12. SpringBoard delivers a flexible framework for rigorous instruction by integrating:

  • A variety of proven teaching and learning strategies
  • Relevant and increasingly complex content
  • Innovative methods that engage students on multiple levels

Middle School Math Curriculum
Sadlier Progress in Mathematics, Fundamentals of Algebra, Foundations of Algebra, and Algebra I

Middle School Science and Social Studies Curriculum

Discovery Education Techbook™ for Science and Social Studies is a digital textbook series, built from scratch for today’s learners and current standards, engages students with dynamic, multimodal content and an inquiry approach. This curriculum employs the latest techniques in formative learning, data, and motivation.

Our science lab is a fully equipped state-of-the-art lab with interactive microscopes and safety equipment donated by Knights of Columbus.

Religion Curriculum

Sadlier WE BELIEVE with PROJECT DISCIPLE is used in grades K-8. This spiral curriculum follows the Diocese of Orlando Curriculum Framework for faith formation.

 

 

Technology

Our Computer Lab has 26 new Acer All-in-One computers. The lab is used to teach students in grades PreK through eighth grades computer skills; such as, Power Point, graphing, charts, research, copy and paste, designing brochures, and more as well as online safety. Students also use the lab for remediation and enrichment online activities. The technology teacher works with the content teachers to correlate lessons using technology.

In the first and second grades the students use LearnPads in small group activities and in grades three through five, the students each use a LearnPad for lessons designed by their teacher. View information about LearnPads at http://learnpad.com. Middle school students bring their own device.

SJA offers web-based programs that enhance curriculum and can be accessed from school and home. These programs are:

Discovery Education Streaming Plus

A ground-breaking cross-curricular resource designed to simultaneously engage students and provide educators with instructional support to implement the Common Core State Standards. Thousands of learning objects, tools, and assessment activities encourage student content creation, critical thinking, and collaboration using web-based video and activities that correlate with all subject content.  http://www.discoveryeducation.com/

BrainPop
BrainPOP creates animated, curricular content that engages students, supports educators, and bolsters achievement. In traditional, blended, and “flipped” learning settings, BrainPOP supports individual, team, and whole-class learning. At school and in informal learning environments, our characters help introduce new topics and illustrate complex concepts.  http://www.brainpopjr.com/

i-Ready
i-Ready Diagnostic & Instruction is a valid and reliable growth measure for grades K-8 that individualizes instruction, offers an adaptive diagnostic, and individualized online instruction for a complete blended learning solution in both reading and math. I-Ready is used in grades K-8 for reading skills and K-5 for math skills.  http://www.curriculumassociates.com/products/iready/diagnostic-instruction.aspx

Mathletics
Mathletics is used in grades K-8

Benefits of Mathletics are:
• Teacher assigns skills for concept mastery
• Students have access to Mathletics 24 hours a day, 7 days a week
• Can be accessed at home and school
• Curriculum courses align to state standards and Common Core
http://www.mathletics.com/

Student Support Services

Guidance (Pre-K-8)
The guidance provides age appropriate instruction in topics on social and emotional well-being. Some of the topics that are presented include: being good friends, being healthy children, being well-mannered, conscientious students, preventing bullying, and developing a healthy self-concept. The counselor is also available to meet with individual students and small groups as needed.

Title I Services
Title I, Part A (Title I) of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, as amended (ESEA) provides financial assistance to local educational agencies (LEAs) and schools with high numbers or high percentages of children from low-income families to help ensure that all children meet challenging state academic standards. Students that are zoned for these schools and have remedial academic needs are entitled to the Title I services to supplement the educational services provided by the private school. For additional information on services to eligible private school children, see the U.S. Department of Education Office of Non-Public Education website. The Polk County School Board provides these services for SJA students through the Learning Resource Center. The teacher works with the students in small groups for forty minutes, twice a week in reading and/or math.

Speech & Language Consultation
This consultation is provided by the Polk County School Board to assess, diagnose, and provide speech/language intervention to children who have difficulty with any aspect of communication. This may include difficulty with articulating speech sounds, following auditory or written directions, reading comprehension, phonics, reading fluency, processing or thought organization, or expressing oneself through speech or writing.

Math Lab (K – 8)
The Math Lab offers a reinforcement program for those students who would benefit from some additional support in a small group setting with more individual attention. In these groups the students preview and/or review the specific vocabulary and mathematical skills/concepts that need remediation. Working to improve math fact fluency is also a goal. Students are placed in these groups by teacher recommendation based on their classroom performance and test scores on the diagnostic testing, i-Ready. This is an online learning program that can also be assessed from home.

Mathematics Remediation and Enrichment
Students in grades K-5 are provided extra help or are able to move ahead using the online program i-Ready, during school and at home. This program differentiates for each student, giving individualized activities and progress checks. All students use Mathletics, an online software math program for skill practice and to compete with other students around the world.

Reading Remediation and Enrichment
Reading Remediation is provided for students in grades K-8 using an online reading program, i-Ready. Students move at their pace with progress checks every 6-8 lessons. The students are tested three times a year to monitor progress. In grades 1-5, students use technology devices, LearnPads to differentiate lessons in all subject areas. Advanced activities are provided for the gifted students on the student’s LearnPad.