Kindergarten through 2nd Grade

Kindergarten through 2nd grade, often called the pre-grammar stage, provides the foundation for all that follows. This stage introduces children to new concepts of language and mathematics and works on cursive handwriting. Students will learn their numbers, counting, adding, subtracting, multiplying, dividing, etc. They will learn to recognize and put letters together and the rules for phonics and spelling. The students will formally encounter the rules of the English language in their grammar courses and will learn the parts of speech and how to construct sentences. They will be increasingly encouraged in their independent reading and learning.

We also emphasize and teach cursive handwriting. Learning to write in cursive is shown to improve brain development in the areas of thinking, language and working memory, as it stimulates brain synapses and synchronicity between the left and right hemispheres, something absent from printing and typing. As a result, the physical act of writing in cursive leads to increased comprehension and participation. Even more exciting, the connected letters and fluid motion of cursive handwriting are especially beneficial to students with disorders such as dyslexia and dysgraphia.

The teaching methods which are most effective in these grades are singing, chanting, repetition, and games, reviewing old concepts and learning new ones. There is also ample opportunity for hands-on discovery and learning, especially through art and science. In addition, we enrich the core language and math skills with bible, science, history, foreign language, beginning composition skills, music, art, drama, and a rich assortment of literature and poetry.

It is required that students entering kindergarten be at least 5 years old by October, have letter recognition (and look a an A and say that it is an A – reading readiness – we suggest All About reading, pre-reading http://www.allaboutlearningpress.com/all-about-reading-pre-reading/ be done before entering Kinder), can write in manuscript (as we do not teach that), can write their first name, has at least a half hour attention span, and know their colors. This is a great foundation for succeeding at our school.  As such each applying Kindergartner will be evaluated for readiness before acceptance.

Specific examples of resources are:

  • Horizons Math (Kindergarten) and Christian Light Education Math (grades 1-2)
  • Apologia Sciences (grades 1-2)
  • Shurley Grammar (grades 1-2)
  • All About Reading (Kindergarten)
  • All About Spelling (phonics, spelling and reading)
  • Story of the World 1 & 2 (grades 1-2)
  • Veritas Press History of ME and US (Kindergarten)
  • Writing with Ease 1 & 2 (grades 1-2)
  • Memoria Press New American Cursive
  • Abeka Phonics Readers (grade 1-2) 

Kindergarten students meet on campus 2 days a week on Mondays and Thursdays. Bible, math, language (phonics and reading), cursive, and history classes are taught each day, and supplementary classes such as PE, Art and Science are taught once a week. Because this is a long day for the children, we have a long lunch and rest time, and other recess breaks throughout the day.

1st and 2nd grades meet on campus all three days (Mondays, Tuesdays, and Thursdays). We have structured the class time to accommodate finishing as much "homework" on those days as possible, freeing up the parents to focus the other two days on areas which their children need more instruction and practice time. This also allows for students to pursue extra-curricular activities such as learning and instrument, playing sports, or being involved in a club.