Curriculum

RELIGION

The student will recognize that Jesus comes to us through the Eucharist in the form of bread and wine. The student will understand that we give and receive forgiveness through the Holy Spirit in the sacrament of Reconciliation. The student will learn that God, as Creator, sends Jesus and the Holy Spirit to help and guide us. The student will learn the parts of the Mass, the various devotions and to call on God through prayer. The students will learn to continually develop a personal responsibility to make good choices and do the right thing.

Text:
We Believe Catholic Identity

LANGUAGE ARTS

The student will be able to recognize sight words, understand context clues, define synonyms, antonyms, homonyms, compound words and contractions, alphabetize, identify parts of a book, and use graphs and tables. Students will begin cursive writing. They will learn punctuation mechanics, proofread, revise, compose a friendly letter, write descriptive sentences, begin creative writing, learn new vocabulary and, orally, practice expression in dialogue. Students will compose and print a five sentence paragraph with a main idea and supporting details using correct grammar. They will focus on opinion writing, narrative writing, and informational writing. They will also learn capitalization rules and how to use guide words in a dictionary.

Texts:
Easy Grammar

MATH

Students skip count by 1’s, 2’s, 3’s, 4’s, 5’s, 10’s, 25’s and 100’s; compare and order numbers, identify ordinal position to tenth; identify sorting and patterning rules; solve routine and non-routine problems; master all basic addition and subtraction facts; add and subtract 1, 2, and 3-digit numbers; begin to picture and name fractions; measure to the nearest half-inch, centimeter and foot; compare volume; compare and measure mass; measure perimeter and area; tell time to five-minute intervals count pennies, nickels, dimes and quarters; identify geometric solids; identify lines of symmetry; identify angles; tally; create, read and write observations from real graphs, pictographs, bar graphs, Venn diagrams and line graphs.

Text:
Math Expressions

SCIENCE

Students will be able to discuss factors which help and hinder survival. They will discuss how living things adapt to environment, care of the body, basic needs of humans, and life cycles of plants and animals. Students will discover the beginning characteristics of states of matter and energy. Students will learn what science is and how people solve problems.  They will learn how things live in their environment, and how things grow and change.  They will learn what the earth is made of, how the sun affects the earth, and how weather changes over time.  Students will learn what matter is, and how energy and forces make objects move.

Text:
Pearson Interactive Science

 SOCIAL STUDIES

The students will develop understanding of concepts of neighborhood, groups with characteristics and structures, and dependence on one another. They will recognize the earth’s physical features and compare people/customs of today with those of the past. Students will learn about families, now and long ago.  Students will learn about a variety of maps. They will learn characteristics of California and North America.  They will be introduced to Community, State, and National Government. Students will learn about land and water resources, getting food long ago, as well as farming today.  Students will learn the roles of producers and consumers, trading and the roles of work and income.  Students will learn the importance of discovery and invention, courage and character, caring and compassion.

Text:
Hartcourt Reflections: People We Know

DEVELOPMENT OF SOCIAL SKILLS

Students at Stella Maris Academy are exposed to and familiar with the Boys Town Social Skills Curriculum in grades TK-8. The Boys Town Social Skills curriculum focuses on empowering students to problem solve, make better choices, and self-advocate. Social skills are a daily part of our school community. Social skills include: following instructions, greeting others, getting the teacher’s attention, accepting no for an answer, accepting a consequence, staying on task, disagreeing appropriately, listening, working as a team, sharing, asking for permission, and saying an apology.

SOCIAL EMOTIONAL LEARNING PROGRAM

The Sanford Harmony Program is implemented in grades TK-8 and its core value is to build healthy peer relationships inside and outside of the classroom. The goal of Sanford Harmony is to create inclusive classroom communities, where teaching takes priority over resolving personality conflicts or issues among students. Students are empowered to communicate, cooperate, connect, embrace diversity, and resolve conflict. Students are taught meaningful and productive ways to interact and express themselves, which are irreplaceable skills that will last a lifetime.

TECHNOLOGY

Technology at Stella Maris Academy goes beyond the computer lab. All of our buildings are networked and well-equipped; each classroom has at least 3 computers, eBeam interactive white board technology, a document camera and an LCD projector. Technology-based projects are integrated throughout our curriculum. SMA buildings have wireless Internet access across the entire school campus. Stella Maris Academy uses iMacs and students utilize the Office 2012 as well as a variety of educational software and Web-based subscription programs. Students in grades TK-8 have access to a class set of iPads and ChromeBooks as well.  Technology is integrated into every component of our curriculum at Stella Maris Academy. Using technology in our daily learning prepares students for the real world environment, especially as our nation becomes increasingly more technology-dependent.  Students are prepared for their future careers, and are given opportunities to interact with classmates through collaboration.

PHYSICAL EDUCATION

Our physical education curriculum is composed of physical fitness fundamentals, motion skills and movement, social skills and sportsmanship. Basic skills that enhance balance, endurance, strength and agility activities, ball handling skills individually, with partners and in groups, and rope jumping are taught. Each skill involves creative thinking, sportsmanship, fairness, cooperation and following directions.

FINE ARTS

Stella Maris Academy provides a challenging, coherent, and relevant art curriculum, the goal of which is to help students experience and appreciate art and the beauty of the world around them, and to lead them to discover unique and constructive methods of self-expression.    In keeping with the diocesan guidelines for a fine arts curriculum, Stella Maris Academy includes in its visual arts curriculum for each grade level elements of four components:  (1) exploration of the visual elements and principles of art and design, including line, color, shape, and composition, (2) creative expression through experimenting with various materials and processes, (3) examination of the cultural and historical contexts in which art is created, exploring cultural themes, works of significant artists, styles and processes; and (4)  development of skills and vocabulary for looking at and discussing art in terms of design elements, characteristics and appreciation.

Second graders explore (1) visual elements and principles of art and design using primary and secondary colors, warm and cool colors, colors of the light spectrum, line, shape, pattern, and texture, and balance and perspective in composition; (2) creative expression using a variety of media including drawing with pencil, crayon, marker, and oil pastel, painting with watercolors and tempera, collage, printmaking, and sculpting with paper and ceramic clay; (3) visual arts heritage by learning to appreciate different kinds of  art work including portraits, landscapes and still life, and exploring art from the Mexican culture (Days of the Dead) and Japanese Sumi ink drawing, and the works of artists such as Munch, Grandma Moses, Monet, Kandinsky, Grant Wood, and Cezanne; and(4) analysis and interpretation by learning to recognize design elements and characteristics in the art work of peers, significant artists, and in various cultures, including Mexico, Japan and China.

SPANISH

Students are constantly encouraged to engage in brief conversations, give and follow simple instructions, ask and answer easy questions. They are invited to express what they like and dislike. They can read, write and understand simple sentences and expressions.

The target language is constantly used in class to create a full immersion experience.

Other school subjects are explored in Spanish, all through a variety of fun and interactive activities that make learning Spanish an enthusiastic experience.  Students learn prayers: Glory; Hail, Mary and Our Father. They reinforce spelling and pronouncing words in Spanish.  Subject matter includes greetings and introductions, goodbyes and courtesy expressions, family, friends, descriptions of people using the verb “ser/to be” and adjectives, home, clothing, and colors.  School, activities associated with school, days of week, time telling, numbers 30-50, animals descriptions are explored through music, dancing, art and craft activities, physical interaction, video and selected readings.  Finally, students learn about parts of the body, food, seasons, and weather.

Instruction is differentiated for native speakers at every grade level.

LIBRARY

The Stella Maris Academy Library/ Media program is built on understanding core knowledge instruction while also learning essential skills for critical thinking, problem solving, communication and collaboration.  Stella Maris Academy’s Library/ Media program fundamentally aligns itself with Common Core State Standards while working directly with each classroom teacher to align curriculum.  The main component of the Library Media program centers on building strong content knowledge and focusing literacy instruction directly to the text. Students in all grades (TK-8) are encouraged to draw direct evidence from the text itself in order to promote comprehension and cite evidence accurately and correctly.  A key component to the program includes an emphasis on interpretive and analytical skills within a range of texts, digital information and internet/ media.

In grades Transitional Kindergarten through Second Grade, students focus on a variety of digital literacy skills to access information efficiently, effectively and most importantly in a safe way to inquire, think critically and gain knowledge.  A main focus is to cultivate a love of reading and become a self-motivated reader.  Students learn the proper use and handling of books, identify and appreciate various genres and types of text (Non-Fiction, Fiction, Informative, Narrative) and applying that knowledge within the classroom. Students learn the basics of alphabetizing and the importance of organization in the Library Media Center.  Students develop successful strategies for locating information accurately and effectively to support their research. In addition, students in Second grade start the Accelerated Reader Program, which provides an individualized plan for reading comprehension based on each students comprehension skills, zone of proximal development and individual reading goals.  Students learn how to use the Accelerated Reader program to read books within their particular level and earn points based on the completion of online comprehension quizzes to accurately gauge their reading comprehension and individual reading readiness. The Accelerated Reader program continues through grade Eight and constitutes one hundred points of their Reading and Literature Grades.

MUSIC

The music program at Stella Maris Academy exists to provide students with a safe environment in which to experiment with and perfect the God given gift of their voices.  Students will be encouraged to sing accurately, in tune, together, and separately.  They will be provided with a variety of performance and leadership opportunities through school productions, after school activities, and church services.  We want to give our students the opportunity to do something GREAT!