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K-5 GENERAL COURSE OF STUDY

Lower School Curriculum Overview

Learning is an adventure to be enjoyed and we make it an exciting and fun adventure at Southlake Christian Academy. Our teachers pledge to continuously increase academic achievement through the use of standard and innovative teaching techniques that engage and challenge their students to dream of new ways to think and create! We use hands-on learning, to encourage our students to think and apply new skills, resulting in the ability to make good choices, respect others and grow confident in their Christian beliefs and values.

In grades TK-6, emphasis is placed on phonics, spelling, vocabulary, grammar and composition in language arts, along with problem-solving mathematics, developmental activities, and hands-on science courses. Foreign language study begins in kindergarten with Spanish and Latin. History, geography, bible, fine arts and physical education complete the curriculum. Latin is an important part of the language program because more than half the words in English are derived from Latin. Moreover, because English is so closely connected to Latin, students who take Latin do better on SAT examinations and are more proficient in English grammar.

Particular attention is given to the development of the reading skills in grades kindergarten through fifth grade. The reading program is a comprehensive reading and language arts program that incorporates feedback from teachers nationwide with the most recent research in the areas of reading and writing. The curriculum incorporates vocabulary, grammar, and writing as well as great literature selections. Students in first through fifth grades participate in the Accelerated Reading Program titled "Reading Eagles". The students are awarded prizes at the end of the year based upon their progress.

Information technology is richly integrated into our curriculum through the use of Smartboards and computers in the classrooms. Smartboards are an interactive-electronic-whiteboard which can significantly enhance learning. Think of it as a computer monitor that is activated by touch and is the size of a classroom chalkboard. The digital content on Smartboards is engaging, motivating, and students pay more attention during lessons which encourages greater student participation in the classroom. Teaching students how to use technology and computer based research.

In all grades, literature is introduced at the level appropriate to student's cognitive development. Students will be exposed to various literary genres designed to deepen their understanding and appreciation of good literature and to foster a love of reading. Students will also be taught to recognize and critique the philosophical assumptions, conceptual recommendations, and core values of a literary work in light of a biblical worldview.

Spanish is taught because of its educational value for students. According to research on the benefits of a secondary language for students, linguistic acquisition skills are at their peak in early academic years. Students who have a head start in learning a new language are better prepared for language studies and requirements in later years.

Mathematics skills are also of primary importance in the academic program. Beginning in kindergarten, numbers are an integral part of the student's study. Special emphasis is placed on the facts of math and on their application. Enrichment mathematics and competitions such as Math Their Way, Math Superstars, Math Olympics, Math League and Math Counts further enhance the mathematics program.

Our science curriculum, is based on a strong conceptual framework and a well-defined teaching strategy that focuses on hands-on science education. Research shows that students learn best by doing; an activity-centered program promotes curiosity, encourages students to ask questions, and helps them to develop the skills and confidence to find the answers. Students learn to love science, and the knowledge and skills they obtain serve them well in other classroom disciplines and throughout their lives.

History and geography are taught in all grades. Each teacher also uses the society in which students live to introduce them to God's created order as it finds expression in the home, church, school, state and culture. Students are taught to interpret history in light of God's sovereign providence as well as to understand the secondary forces (e.g., geopolitical, economic and religious) that shape human history.

Fine arts: Students are taught that music and the arts are gifts given by God and are to be studied and enjoyed for His glory. The philosophies of music and art are taught, as well as the skills to recognize and appreciate excellence in the fine arts.

Physical education is used to teach students to respect, develop and care for their bodies. Students are taught the basic techniques and rules in various sports including basketball, volleyball, soccer, and running. Students also take the Presidential Fitness Test. This recognizes and rewards students for their physical fitness levels.

View Course Descriptions

Languange Arts: K-2

Kindergarten study begins with the teaching of sounds and blending of sounds into predictable patterns and words. Reading, writing and language skills with literature as its foundation are emphasized in first grade along with phonics and decoding skills. In second grade, vocabulary and comprehension are practiced daily along with phonetic skills. A variety of writing is also covered including creative writing, letters and poetry.

Science: K-2

Beginning in kindergarten, students are introduced to process skills such as observation, classifying, communicating, comparing, counting, describing and ordering. These skills are further developed in first grade as students continue to explore God's world. Second graders learn how the earth is unique in the solar system in its design and ability to sustain life. The functions of the major human body systems are also studied.

Foreign Language: K-2

Spanish: Basic vocabulary and conversational Spanish are introduced.

History: K-2

Study in kindergarten includes an historical examination of self, the school community and our country. First grade students are taught history concepts and geography skills while the emphasis in second grade is on the study of the Colonial Period and the Revolutionary War Period.

Mathematics: K-2

Kindergarten students develop an understanding and insight of the pattern of mathematics. The relationships and interconnections in the basic fundamentals are introduced. In first grade, a basic foundation and the order and patterns of numbers are examined, with emphasis on addition and subtraction of two-digit numbers, geometric shapes, time, money and measurement. Fractions and multiplication are also introduced. Building on first grade math concepts and skills, second grade study includes problem solving, fractions, multiplication, division, time and metric measurements, counting money and graphing.

Bible: K-2

Students in kindergarten study heroes of faith and the life of Christ in addition to memorizing Bible verses that emphasize the attributes of God. Bible classes at the first grade level introduce students to a loving God and His Word, the Bible. Second grade students learn that the Bible is God's truth to man and applies to all aspects of life.

Physical Education: K-2

We believe in educating the whole child. Physical education introduces the benefits of personal fitness habits and skills designed to stimulate and encourage students to develop healthful living. Activities are included to improve cardiovascular health, body awareness and coordination.

Fine Arts: K-2

The studies of music and art are introduced in the lower elementary grades with an emphasis placed on musical performance and visual arts.

Overview: 3-6

In grades K-6, emphasis is placed on the basics: phonics, spelling, vocabulary, grammar and composition in language arts, along with problem-solving mathematics, developmental activities, and hands-on science courses. Foreign language study begins in kindergarten. History, geography, bible, art and physical education complete the curriculum.

Language Arts: 3-5

The course of study for grades 3-5 includes reading, writing, grammar and spelling. Vocabulary study is added in grade four, while Latin vocabulary and the elements of listening and speaking are introduced in fifth grade. Students are exposed to the major genres of literature and complete a variety of writing assignments, both creative and formulaic.

Science: 3-5

Students in third grade examine the scientific knowledge and processes needed to identify and solve problems related to science. Course content includes animals with/without backbones, the planets and solar system, and how plants live. Fourth grade science study is designed for students to see and explore the truths and order in the universe. Some topics covered are simple machines, the moon, light, electricity, area and volume, and the digestive system. The fifth grade science course highlights a wide variety of physical life and earth science topics. Demonstrations and experiments give students hands-on experience.

Foreign Language: 3-5

Latin/Greek: The foreign language classes in the upper elementary grades cover the study of Latin/Greek roots.

Foreign History: 3-5

Third grade students study the history of the United States from the American Indians through the signing of the Constitution. Students in the fourth grade learn about the life and customs of Americans in different time periods and also study the country's climate, land use, population, plants, animals, government and industry. Fifth grade curriculum consists of indepth study of the United States from the early 1900's through the present time, both historically and geographically.

Bible: 3-5

Studies in third grade include the characteristics of prayer and the review of selected Old Testament characters. Students in fourth grade study the books of the Old Testament, along with Old Testament prophets. Bible study in fifth grade is a survey course of the books of the Bible enabling students to see the scope and sequence of isolated stories and teachings from younger years of instruction.

Physical Education: 3-5

Physical education in the upper elementary school grades continues to emphasize the healthful living habits and fitness understanding learned in the primary grades. Team sports are introduced with emphasis placed on good sportsmanship.

Fine Arts: 3-5

The study of fine arts focuses on music performance and appreciation as well as the visual arts. A strings program begins in the fifth grade.

Art Appreciation

This course introduces the origins and historical development of art. Emphasis is placed on the relationship of design principles to various art forms including but not limited to sculpture, painting, and architecture. Upon completion, students should be able to identify and analyze a variety of artistic styles, periods, and media. Concepts related to media and technique will be introduced. This course had been approved to satisfy the Comprehensive Articulation Agreement general education core requirement in humanities/fine arts.

Kindergarden Curriculum

KINDERGARTEN

The Open Court reading program is a comprehension-based program that emphasizes phonemic awareness. Open Court Reading is a literature rich, reading and language arts program that instills passion in children for a lifelong learning and a love of reading. It provides strategic reading goals and a system to monitor and clarify understanding of what has been read. Open Court provides strategies to help students grow in their understanding of the text. Reading is about problem-solving and this curriculum emphasizes the use of various strategies to make sense of the text. Children will learn the alphabetic principle: that letters work together in a systematic way to connect spoken language to written words. This understanding is the foundation for reading.

In Saxon Math Kindergarten, instruction purposely progresses at a pace that allows children to develop competence and confidence. New learning is presented in increments, with time provided between increments for practice. Mathematical vocabulary, higher order thinking skills references, and extension and enrichment activities are also a part of Saxon math. Concept understanding progresses during daily routines set up within the curriculum. Southlake Christian Academy understands a strong foundation in mathematical concepts creates the building blocks for successful students.

Mathematical concepts taught:

• Counts by 1's, 2's, 5's & 10's

• Identifies, reads, writes, and compares numbers to 100

• Compares set of concrete objects; matches sets and numbers

• Identifies and describes equivalent sets and sets with more, less, and the same

• Orders one and two digit numbers

• Identifies order and position of objects and numbers using terms before, after and between; greatest and least; inside and outside; and more, same, and less

• Constructs, locates points, and counts forward and backward on a number line

• Identifies even and odd numbers

• Identifies ordinal position

• Introduction of whole number concepts operations

• Use concrete objects and pictures to model and solve addition and subtraction problems

• Introduction of fractions

• Introduction of money

• Introduction of identifying, extending, making predictions and creating patterns

• Introduction of geometry

• Identifies, describes, sorts, and compares one-and two-dimensional geometric shapes in concrete objects

• Identifies geometric solids including cones, cubes, spheres, and cylinders

• Introduction of time to hour & half hour

• Identifies and describes yesterday, today, and tomorrow

• Introduction of temperature

• Introduction of linear measure

• Introduction of weight

• Introduction of capacity

• Introduction of area

• Introduction of data analysis and statistics

• Creating graphs

• Identifies most, fewest, and same on a graph

• Introduction of probability

• Introduction of problem solving

• Creating strategies for problem solving

Southlake Christian Academy understands a strong foundation in mathematical concepts creates the building blocks for successful students and is committed to establishing fundamental learning for all students.

Science: Students will explore and discover many different aspects of God's world including: outer space, the ocean, magnets, the rainforest, the human body, weather, and plant life.

Bible: Students will learn a variety of biblically based stories and concepts including: The Lord's Prayer, The Life and Ministry of Paul, The Early Church, The Salvation Story, Heaven, The Christmas Story, and The Easter Story. First grade has weekly Bible memory verses and Catechism questions and answers. Bible time also includes prayer time and singing.

Social Studies: Students will explore a variety of topics in Social Studies including: Westward Expansion in the United States, the importance of a variety jobs in our communities, maps and directions, Christian character building, and the major Christian Holidays.

Handwriting: Students review letter and number formation through guided practice throughout the year.

Music: Students are exposed to various musical concepts through listening, singing, and playing musical instruments.

Art: Students will receive instruction in art elements, media and techniques and will demonstrate their ability to apply that information creatively.

Physical Education: Students will develop fine and gross motor skills for catching, kicking, throwing and striking. Students develop coordination, grace, and control while fostering a love of physical activity.

1st Grade Curriculum

Reading: Using the Open Court-Imagine It! reading curriculum, children build on their knowledge from Kindergarten. Through phonemic awareness, phonics, and fluency instruction, children identify words and read with smoothness and expression. Children further build reading comprehension skills and strategies through the exploration of a variety of literature based on various themes. Students also build on their language skills through grammar and composition instruction.

Math: Saxon math, Students receive instruction and demonstrate the ability to perform addition and subtraction computations and further develop problem solving strategies. Concepts such as, numbers, time, money, geometry, place value and measurement are also taught. Saxon math is a teaching method for incremental learning of mathematics. It involves teaching a new mathematical concept every day and constantly reviewing old concepts.

Social Studies: Students explore a variety of topics in Social Studies including: Westward Expansion in the United States, the importance of a variety jobs in our communities, maps and directions, Christian character building, and the major Christian holidays.

Science: Students explore and discover many different aspects of God's world including: outer space, the ocean, magnets, the rainforest, the human body, weather, and plant life.

Handwriting: Students review letter and number formation through guided practice throughout the year.

Spelling: Students apply knowledge learned in phonetic instruction through writing activities and weekly spelling tests.

Writing: Students work on sentence formation, content, spelling and creativity in writing. The children learn and practice writing in many different genres including, informational writing, lists, letters, poetry, descriptive writing, and fictional stories.

Bible: Students learn through a variety of biblically based stories and concepts including: The Lord's Prayer, The Life and Ministry of Paul, The Early Church, The Salvation Story, Heaven, The Christmas Story, and The Easter Story. First grade has weekly Bible memory verses and Catechism questions and answers. Bible time also includes prayer time and singing.

Music: Students are exposed to various musical concepts through listening, singing, and playing musical instruments.

Art: Students will receive instruction in art elements, media and techniques and will demonstrate their ability to apply that information creatively.

Physical Education: Students will develop fine and gross motor skills for catching, kicking, throwing and striking. Students develop coordination, grace, and control while fostering a love of physical activity.

2nd Grade Curriculum

2nd Grade
Course Descriptions

Reading/Literature/English: Open Court's "Imagine It!" Reading Series offers second graders an opportunity to read many types of genres. Students practice applying phonics and comprehension skills to promote strong reading. The comprehensive language arts program leads children to an understanding of six parts of speech and how to use these tools to become strong writers. Students will also build their language skills through grammar instruction.

Math: Students will receive instruction in and demonstrate the ability to perform basic mathematical computations and problem-solving with counting numbers, basic geometry, time, money, and measurement. Saxon math is designed for the student to complete assorted math problems, learn a new mathematical concept, practice problems relating to that lesson, and solve a varied number of problems which include what the students learned today and in select previous lessons -- all for one day's class.

Second grade Saxon Math combines skills practice from the second and third grade programs. This accelerated approach introduces new concepts by building on previously taught skills, giving them a strong mathematical base.

Students problem solve, investigate visual-spatial relationships with manipulatives, and practice fact drills to build a strong base for computation. Students are challenged in a variety of ways in our daily math lessons. Hands-on activities, small-group problem solving, poems, rhymes, songs, and exercises allow students to use a variety of learning modalities. Daily lessons allow students to develop an understanding of the following concepts:

• Single, Two, and Three-digit Addition and Subtraction

• Geometry

• Probability

• Problem Solving

• Place Value

• Patterns and Sequencing

• Fractions

• Rounding and Estimating

• Money

• Time

• Measurement

• Single-digit multiplication and division

• Graphing

Science: Science in 2nd grade includes many hands-on activities that help students explore the earth God created. Students study insects and how God has a purpose for even the smallest creature. Students also learn about light and shadows, the history of the earth, and the weather around us. Through exploration in experiments and observations, students learn about the world around them.

Bible: The second grade Bible curriculum covers the history of events in Exodus with Moses and the Israelites. The birth, death, and resurrection of Jesus are also covered. Students also study the first eleven chapters of Genesis. The creation of the world is discussed using the way people were scattered at the tower of Babel. All of the lessons encompass life application and the importance of prayer and worship of our holy God.

Social Studies: The second grade social studies curriculum begins with a study of maps. Students understand where they live and where other continents of the world are in relation to themselves. Most of our curriculum centers around the founding of the thirteen American colonies. Students learn why each colony was started and what life was like in them. Plays, skits, and songs are used to help students retain facts earned about the founding of America. Students also gain an understanding of why the colonists fought the Revolutionary War to gain our independence from England. We also study different cultures during our missions unit.

Handwriting: Students begin writing with understanding sentence structure and building on this concept to write strong paragraphs. Graphic organizers are used to prepare well-constructed paragraphs. Classroom publications help students understand the process of rough drafts, revisions, and final copies. Students learn to put paragraphs into formal research papers when they write insect reports and design their own colonies.

Grammar: This course introduces students to six basic parts of speech. Students gain an understanding of sentence structure through patterned sentences, rhymes, and songs. Grammar units also include dictionary and study skills lessons.

Spelling: This course applies phonics skills learned in first grade to reading and writing. Students master spelling of basic sight words and use them correctly in their writing. Students also learn to spell twenty to twenty-five spelling words each week. Students work on patterns and word meanings through various activities with weekly spelling words.

Music: Second Grade Music exposes the student to music through songs. It encourages the student to sing using well known children's songs. The student will be introduced to the concept of expressing meaning and emotion through both speech and song.

Art: The student will receive instruction in art elements, media and techniques and demonstrate their ability to apply that information with their creative abilities.

Physical Education: Physical Education at the 2nd – 3rd grade levels focuses on maturing form in skipping, hopping, galloping, and sliding. Students demonstrate control in traveling activities and weight bearing and balance activities on a variety of body parts. Students learn ball-handling skills necessary for participation in lead-up games and activities. The program is designed to increase students' physical skills and experiences in lead up activities.

"...We are taking every thought captive to the obedience of Christ." II Corinthians 10:5

"The Mission of SouthLake Christian Academy is twofold. The first is to assist the Christian family by providing an education marked by a biblical worldview, academic excellence and affordability so that students are equipped to be salt and light for God's glory. The second is evangelical in scope, to present God's Word and biblical worldview daily to non-believers with the promise of God's redemptive plan, to be a force and voice for Jesus Christ that will resonate throughout non-believing families."