The Elementary School language arts program offers students daily opportunities to master the skills of reading, writing, speaking, and listening. We develop learners who not only use language as an essential tool, but who also find joy in the English language. Our students learn to read, write, and speak thoughtfully, and also to think critically and imaginatively. Teachers' strive to immerse students in language learning, and class activities are designed to review, reinforce, and solidify learned concepts. Our reading program accommodates a range of ability levels, needs, and interests and develops students who read independently for pleasure and information.
Teachers use a variety of techniques to teach reading, including phonics, word patterns, structural analysis, decoding skills, and vocabulary. In the early grades, the Making Meaning program helps develop comprehension by using great children’s literature as a basis for skill development. In the upper grades, novel studies in literature groups and independent reading help solidify comprehension, and the program Wordly Wise supplements vocabulary development.
Our writing program produces writers who communicate clearly in a number of different formats. Students write to express ideas and feelings, to convey information, and to describe experiences. Teachers focus both on the skills and processes of writing and teach students to draft, revise, edit, proofread, and publish. Teachers judiciously use a variety of techniques and programs to help students develop their writing and spelling skills, such as Lucy Calkins' Units of Study Writing, Words Their Way, Phono-graphix, and Explode the Code. In most classes, the majority of the language arts program is integrated with project work or literature in social studies.