Grades One though Four
Classes in first through fourth grades are self-contained; students remain in their classrooms with their homeroom teachers for language arts (reading, English, spelling, handwriting), mathematics, science, health, and social studies. Classes split into two classrooms may provide a more departmentalized approach to their schedule. One of the teachers teaches math and science; the other teaches language arts.
Children receive art, music, physical education (PE), computer literacy, Spanish or French, and religion from teachers who are specialists in these subject areas.
Children attend Mass once a week, typically on Wednesdays. The children have a forty-minute lunch and recess period. They go to the library weekly. Children in grades two, three, and four participate in the Accelerated Reader® and Accelerated Mathematics® programs. The science program incorporates many hands-on activities (experiments) and includes life, earth, and physical science as well as a unit on space and technology. In grades with two sections, the partner teachers often team teach, with one teaching science and one teaching social studies. Field trips support the curriculum.
Handwriting: Manuscript and cursive handwriting are taught.
Students in grade five continue the basic curriculum that is described in the section for grades one through four. In preparation for the transition to junior high, fifth graders may begin to “change classes” for a limited number of subjects. Fifth graders also use lockers and are issued combination locks that typically follow them through middle school. At the end of fifth grade, students take a pre-algebra readiness test. Students who have demonstrated consistent strength in mathematics and who perform satisfactorily on the pre-algebra readiness test are given the opportunity to enroll in pre-algebra in the sixth grade.