Elementary Curriculum Overview

Language Arts

    General Overview of ELA in Early Childhood and Elementary School

  • The ELA curriculum at KAS is based on the Common Core State Standards.
  • The Common Core State Standards for English Language Arts and Literacy build on the best of existing standards and reflect the skills and knowledge students will need to succeed in college, career, and life. Understanding how the standards differ from previous standards—and the necessary shifts they call for—is essential to implementing the standards well.
  • The following are key shifts called for by the Common Core:
    • Regular practice with complex texts and their academic language
    • Reading, writing, and speaking grounded in evidence from texts, both literary and informational
    • Building knowledge through content-rich nonfiction

    Overview of Foundational Skills

    The foundational standards are directed toward fostering students’ understanding and working knowledge of concepts of print, the alphabetic principle, and other basic conventions of the English writing system. These foundational skills are not an end in and of themselves; rather, they are necessary and important components of an effective, comprehensive reading program designed to develop proficient readers with the capacity to comprehend texts across a range of types and disciplines. Instruction should be differentiated: good readers will need much less practice with these concepts than struggling readers will. The point is to teach students what they need to learn and not what they already know—to discern when particular children or activities warrant more or less attention.

    Overview of Reading

    The reading standards offer a focus for instruction each year and help ensure that students gain adequate exposure to a range of texts and tasks. Rigor is also infused through the requirement that students read increasingly complex texts through the grades. Students advancing through the grades are expected to meet each year’s grade-specific standards and retain or further develop skills and understandings mastered in preceding grades.

    Overview of Language and Writing

    The standards for K-5 offer a focus for instruction each year to help ensure that students gain adequate mastery of a range of skills and applications. Each year in their writing, students should demonstrate increasing sophistication in all aspects of language use, from vocabulary and syntax to the development and organization of ideas, and they should address increasingly demanding content and sources. Students advancing through the grades are expected to meet each year’s grade-specific standards and retain or further develop skills and understandings mastered in preceding grades.

    Overview of the 6+1 Writing Traits Program

    Kuwait American School has chosen to adopt the 6+1 Writing Traits Program to enhance writing instruction in Grades 1-12. It is interwoven with the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) Writing Expectations to ensure that students are both meeting CCSS targets while important writing traits are continually modeled, taught, and assessed.

    About 6+1 Trait® Writing

  • Trait Definitions
  • The 6+1 Trait® Writing Model of Instruction & Assessment comprises 6+1 key qualities that define quality writing. These are:
    • Ideas—the main message
    • Organization—the internal structure of the piece
    • Voice—the personal tone and flavor of the author's message
    • Word Choice—the vocabulary a writer chooses to convey meaning
    • Conventions—the mechanical correctness
    • Presentation—how the writing actually looks on the page

    Overview of Words Their Way Spelling Program

    Kuwait American School has chosen to adopt the Words Their Way Spelling Program to enhance spelling instruction in Grades 3-8 to ensure that teaching is differentiated to students’ specific levels.

    About Words Their Way Program

    Words Their Way is a teacher-directed, student-centered approach to vocabulary growth and spelling development whereby students engage in a variety of sound, pattern and meaning activities, sorting pictures and words. It caters for differentiated learning in the classroom, rather than a one-size fits all solution.

    Key Features :

    • Diagnostic tools to enable you to assess, clearly identify and document each student’s spelling stage and areas needing improvement.
    • Companion volumes specialize in various learning stages, from emergent to derivational relations.
    • Engaging activities to support and develop students at each stage.
    • This resource extends to EAL/D (ESL) and secondary students

Mathematics

    General Overview of Math in Early Childhood and Elementary School

    The mathematics curriculum at the Kuwait American School is based on the Common Core State Standards (CCSS), which were written to ensure that math is taught with more depth and that an opportunity for conceptualization of mathematical concepts and finding applications to everyday life is clearly provided. We have made some adjustments (additions and omissions) to the CCSS to meet our learners where they are at and ensure that they have plenty of time to master necessary skills.

    Mathematics | Grade 1

  • In Grade 1, instructional time is focused on four critical areas:
    • Developing understanding of addition, subtraction, and strategies for addition and subtraction within 20.
    • Developing understanding of whole number relationships and place value, including grouping in tens and ones.
    • Developing understanding of linear measurement and measuring lengths as iterating length units.
    • Reasoning about attributes of, and composing and decomposing geometric shapes.

    Mathematics | Grade 2

  • In Grade 2, instructional time is focused on four critical areas:
    • Extending understanding of base-ten notation.
    • Building fluency with addition and subtraction.
    • Using standard units of measure.
    • Describing and analyzing shapes.

    Mathematics | Grade 3

  • In Grade 3, instructional time is focused on four critical areas:
    • Developing understanding of multiplication and division and strategies for multiplication and division within 100.
    • Developing understanding of fractions, especially unit fractions (fractions with numerator 1).
    • Developing understanding of the structure of rectangular arrays and of area.
    • Describing and analyzing two-dimensional shapes.

    Mathematics | Grade 4

  • In Grade 4, instructional time is focused on three critical areas:
    • Developing understanding and fluency with multi-digit multiplication, and developing understanding of dividing to find quotients involving multi-digit dividends.
    • Developing an understanding of fraction equivalence, addition and subtraction of fractions with like denominators, and multiplication of fractions by whole numbers.
    • Understanding that geometric figures can be analyzed and classified based on their properties, such as having parallel sides, perpendicular sides, particular angle measures, and symmetry.

    Mathematics | Grade 5

  • In Grade 5, instructional time is focused on three critical areas:
    • Developing fluency with addition and subtraction of fractions, and developing understanding of the multiplication of fractions and of division of fractions in limited cases (unit fractions divided by whole numbers and whole numbers divided by unit fractions).
    • Extending division to 2-digit divisors, integrating decimal fractions into the place value system and developing understanding of operations with decimals to hundredths, and developing fluency with whole number and decimal operations.
    • Developing understanding of volume.

Science

    Elementary Department – Overview of Science
  • The Elementary department divides the year into four thematic themes. Science is taught with direct interdisciplinary links to language arts, where informational text is used to supplement science classes. In addition the social studies themes are complementary to the science themes to enhance learning.
  • Following is a summary of the themes with the social studies links.
  • Q1 Q2 Q3 Q4
    Grade 1 Science Plants Animals Habitats/Kuwait Eky and Space
    Grade 2 Human Body Forces and Matter Weather and Seasons Earth and Its Resources
    Grade 3 Plants Animals African Ecosystems Space
    Grade 4 Kuwait MoE/Desert Adaptations North American Ecosystems Forces and Motion Earth Geology
    Grade 5 Human Body Physical Science: Matter Sound, Light, and the Rainforest Oceans

Social Studies

    Elementary Department – Overview of Social Studies (SS)
  • The Elementary department divides the year into four thematic themes. Science is taught with direct interdisciplinary links to language arts, where informational text is used to supplement science classes. In addition the social studies themes are complementary to the science themes to enhance learning.
  • Following is a summary of the themes with the social studies links.
  • Q1 Q2 Q3 Q4
    Grade 1 Me and My Community Basic Map Skills Environmental Interactions & Kuwait Past/Present Environmental Threats – Pollution and Resource Overconsumption
    Grade 2 How We Look After Ourselves Inventions Map Skills Prominent Landforms around the World
    Grade 3 Map Skills Endangered Animals Colonialism in Africa Space Exploration History
    Grade 4 Kuwait MoE Native Americans Map Skills Historic and Current Earthquakes and Volcanic Eruptions
    Grade 5 History of Vaccines and World Hunger History of Chocolate and the Columbian Exchange Mayas, Aztecs, and Incas Kuwait MoE

Online Coursework

Math Online Coursework

Students will be responsible for completing math homework online using their provided username and password. It will count towards their homework grade and will be reflected in their report cards. Students can access this through a computer with internet connection or an I-pad/tab. The teacher will be informing the student in class as well as via the weekly newsletter of their weekly assignments. Teachers will be able to log in to see students work as well as what kind of mistakes they are making. This will help inform the teacher and aid remedial instruction for enhanced learning.

  • Grades 1-2 will be using Splash Math
  • Grades 3-5 will be using IXL Math

Reading Online Coursework

We will also use a leveled reading program Reading A-Z, referred to as RAZ across Elementary. Students will be assigned a reading level by the teacher and are requested to read a minimum of two books every week and answer related questions online. Teachers will log in to review students’ progress and move up their levels as per their progress. Once again usernames and passwords will be provided. This will also be reflected in the students’ report cards.

In order, for this program to succeed parents’ cooperation is much needed. Please help students set up their accounts at home and follow-up that their work is completed by them.

Arabic/Islamic Studies/Quran

These subjects are part of a sequence of courses per the Kuwait Ministry of Education main curriculum regarding arabic and religious education. AFL for foreigners and/or students who speak arabic as a second language is also offered. Arabic is scheduled once a day, everyday of the week for all grades. Religion/Quran is scheduled 3 times a week.

Physical Education

  • A variety of activities which will motivate the students and develop the WHOLE child in EVERY child. Students will learn more about health and wellness while developing their physical skills.

Music

  • Students explore various types of music, develop an appreciation for different styles, and learn to express themselves musically

Art

  • Students explore their creativity and learn to express themselves through an array of different types of visual arts.

Technology

  • Students practice being digital citizens and learn word processing skills as well as use up-to-date software and technologies.

Character Development

  • Living Values and Etiquette
  • Students learn self-awareness and management techniques as well as managing social relationships and interactions with others under the umbrella of the Living Values and Etiquette programs. Kelso’s Choices is a supplementary program used for building conflict resolution skills

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