"I believe in active, engaging, and hands-on lessons. Students, especially our younger friends, learn through doing. I have found that students are more excited and focused when they get to “do” instead of just see."
~ Katherine Kuhl
Ms. Kuhl & Mrs. Kuzel
GOALS & EXPECTATIONS
We believe in a giving, positive classroom and treat the children as our own. We are passionate about finding what motivates each child to learn and working with parents to ensure every child has the opportunity to be successful. We believe that when students are challenged, regardless of ability level, that they rise to the challenge with love, care, compassion and believing in themselves.
The text book Blest Are We is used. This book covers the foundational basic teachings, Scripture, and traditions of our Catholic faith at an age appropriate level. Seasonal activities and prayer services are also done and discussed throughout the year. All kindergarten students are invited to join the Kindergarten Kindness Squad to grow in kindness and service to others.
Reading includes phonemic awareness, phonics, and blending of sounds to make and say words. Sight words are presented in class and then sent home for practice and repetition. Students read books chorally with the whole class, in small groups with a teacher, and independently. Reading fluency and comprehension strategies are key components of reading instruction. Literacy centers allow children to work at an appropriate developmental level while building literacy skills. Students work on correct letter formation for writing words and sounds. (St. Martha uses the D’Nealian style writing in order to make a smooth transition to cursive writing in second grade.) They compose class stories together, and sentences and independent stories using “best-guess” spelling. Within the realm of writing, grammar and language rules are introduced. Listening skills are important for gathering and sharing information. Students hear and follow directions, synthesize information from texts, and communicate with each other. Teachers model correct fluency as they read and conduct “think-aloud” lessons explaining the thinking processes when problem solving.
The Mathematics curriculum is taught using Math Connects. This program provides students the opportunities to use and connect kindergarten mathematics to everyday situations and activities. Math content covered ranges from patterns, addition, subtraction, time and geometry. With the teacher’s guided instruction students learn and apply math concepts in a hands-on way.
The science curriculum is implemented through a program called STEMscopes. This curriculum focuses on engaging the students with hands-on task, scientific investigations, engineering solutions, and problem-solving based learning. The focus for Kindergarten is physical science (forces, speed and direction and energy from the sun), Life Sciences (animal needs, plant needs, and Habitats), and Earth Science (Natural resources, and weather). The purpose of our curriculum is to illuminate learning, do activities, expand their knowledge and assess student learning.
Social studies consists of critical thinking skills, solving problems, posing questions and examining clues within the world around us. Examples of curriculum topics are maps and globes, being good citizens, and flags and symbols to name a few. This curriculum is a way to help students reach new levels of engagement, which leads to success in learning.
In this class students continue where they left off in Pre-K but expand upon what they already know. Can they make a pattern that decorates a picture? Can they use scissors by themselves?
Students learn about our Library. They have the opportunity to check out books weekly. Book care rules and parts of a book are some of the library skills covered. Mrs. Graas reads aloud a variety of books in different genres. Comprehension skills are addressed through discussion about what was read. Students learn small poems and nursery rhymes.
In Kindergarten students learn more about music concepts such as high and low, fast and slow, loud and soft. They also talk about instruments and what makes them sound the way they do. They get to play with instruments every week and learn about what music means to them. The students have a Christmas and end-of-the-year program.
Kindergartners work on basic gross motor skills, manipulative skills (throwing and catching, bouncing, kicking, dribbling, etc.), teamwork, cooperation, and sportsmanship. They also do a variety of sport related skills that apply to sports such as volleyball, basketball, floor hockey, etc., as well as lifetime skills such as jump rope, bowling, and fitness exercises. Lastly they participate in a variety of cooperative based activities such as; parachutes, noodles, and holiday themes games. Each student is given points based on effort, participation, and sportsmanship.
The Spanish curriculum is taught in a cross-curricular way, supporting learning in other subjects through the Spanish language and culture. Literacy: Students learn greetings, numbers from 0- 20, Spanish vowels & ABC’s phonetics, colors, shapes, animals, fruits/vegetables, and classroom commands. Religion: The sign of the cross and Guardian Angel prayer Cultural: Holidays vocabulary as Easter, Halloween, Three king’s Day & Valentine’s Day.
Students in Kindergarten learn how to use a mouse, including double click and right-click. They illustrate ideas using the proper software, such as TuxPaint and PowerPoint, and learn the layout of the keyboard.
- KINDERGARTEN KINDNESS SQUAD: This is an after school club which does random acts of kindness for different groups in the St. Martha community.
- FIELD TRIPS: Derby Dinner Playhouse, Derby Museum, Louisville Public Library
- BIG/LITTLE BUDDIES: Kindergartners are paired with seventh grade students to do various activities throughout the year.
- PARENT LUNCH: Parents come and eat lunch with their child.
At a recent professional development day, St. Martha faculty got to share with one another…
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