Course of Study
Kindergarten is when students begin to have a slightly more structured academic day in preparation for grades 1-5. Students learn in both English and Cantonese and have daily classes in Phonics/Reading, Numbers, Science, Movement, Music, and Bible. Character building and creativity are emphasized as we help set the foundation for what we hope will be a lifelong love of learning.
First grade is an important step for children. They feel more "grown up" as they are finally in a "numbered" grade. Academically, reading and writing become more fluent with most students are reading chapter books by the end of the school year. In math, they begin to learn more complex addition and subtraction and start to connect numbers with concepts such as time and money. Exploration continues in science as students recognize patterns and identify characteristics in the world around them.
In second grade, children continue to build on and master what they’ve learned in first grade and begin to develop their analytical and creative abilities. Students are reading and writing without needing to pause to sound out or decode individual words. They write stories and practice other types of writing such as letters and thank you notes. In math, multiplication and unit fractions introduced and connections continue to be made between numbers and concepts such as measurement, temperature, and time. Exploration continues in science and students begin to delve more deeply into topics such as weather, energy, animals, and plants.
Students entering third grade begin to work more independently. They require fewer explicit instructions and are able to take on more complex assignments. In reading and writing, they focus on reading fluency and the use of tools such as dictionaries and thesauruses to help them understand language. In math, students continue to reinforce arithmetic skills, learn division and fractions, and begin to think more abstractly as they study estimation, patterns, and geometry. More structured scientific investigation complements exploration as students begin to make educated guesses and hypotheses about their observations.
In the fourth grade, students continue to reinforce the lessons learned throughout the primary grades and take on more academic challenges. They begin to work collaboratively with their peers and find they need to hone their study organizational skills to meet the increased demands on their time. In language arts, students build vocabulary and read critically. They learn to use research tools and begin to synthesize their findings in papers and presentations. In math, students continue refining their arithmetic skills and thinking more abstractly in topics such as probability and geometry. Topics in science concentrate on delving in depth into complex systems such as rainforests, coral reefs, and the ocean.
Fifth grade is a year of transition for many students. As puberty approaches, students begin to be more influenced by both their peers and social norms. Academics continue to be more structured and analysis is emphasized in all subject areas.