English Language Arts Curriculum
Readers Workshop is the cornerstone of our ELA program. Students apply purposeful, sequential reading skills and strategies, explore themes, and develop critical thinking skills. Teachers provide opportunities to read in whole class, small group and individual settings. This supports vocabulary development, reading growth, and also provides many opportunities for students to engage in meaningful literacy dialogue. Students read a variety of genres and use texts as mentors for research and writing.
We use The Empowering Writers Program for writing instruction in the genres of narrative, expository and opinion writing. Through a spiraling of instruction, students build on their previous knowledge of the narrative writing diamond and the expository pillar to produce well developed narratives and expository essays in accordance with the common core state standards. This program highlights the reciprocal relationship between reading and writing. Teachers use the Empowering Writers summarizing frameworks to strengthen both reading and writing instruction.
In third grade students finish their study of Fundations, a multisensory and systematic phonic program that is now in place from K-3. Students learn the sound symbol relationships and apply them to reading and spelling. In fourth and fifth grade, word study further expands to include vocabulary and morphology, providing a developmental approach to spelling and word study.