The second grade curriculum is based on Tennessee State Board of Education Curriculum Standards as well as Common Core Standards. Our social curriculum is based on the Responsive Classroom approach to learning. For mathematics we use the best of a combination of programs with the primary focus being on the new enVision Math program by Pearson along with many teacher created activities based on the needs and learning styles of our classroom community. Our language arts program is individualized for each student and based on Guided Reading by Scholastic and work by Irene Fountas, Gay Su Pinnell, Lester Laminack, Sharon Taberski, and Katie Wood Ray. Social Studies and Science curriculum is taught using a thematic approach with strong ties in mathematics and language arts.
This year our K-2 focus is shifting from primarily focusing on Tennessee State Standards to focusing primarily on Common Core National Standards. Thematic learning units will shift this year to facilitate this change in focus. The following is a list of thematic units from the past, but please keep in mind some of these topics will shift this year.
Second Grade Thematic Units:
All About Me
Maps & Globes
Rocks & Soil
Government & Citizenship
The 50 States
Life Cycles (primary focus on Painted Lady Butterfly)
Second graders at University School are not assigned letter grades, however assessment is an integral part of our curriculum in order to assure student success. Students are continually assessed to assure that they meet performance expectations and to provide information on how best to help each student grow as an individual learner. Student assessment comes in many forms including pre and post authentic assessments, anecdotal notes, digital photo documentations, video documentation, reflective writings, individual interviews, rubrics, observations, self-assessments, peer evaluations, running records, and tests or as I like to say, "show you knows." In the area of language arts we use the Benchmark Assessment System by Gay Su Pinnell and Irene Fountas to gauge our student performance and inform instruction. Each quarter parents will receive a summary report outlining classroom goals and student progress in relation to these goals.
Grades K-5 at University School operate under the Northeast Foundation for Children's Responsive Classroom Model.
Key components of the Responsive Classroom Model are morning meeting, rules and logical consequences, classroom organization, academic choice, guided discovery, and assessment and reporting to parents.
Results of the Responsive Classroom Model include a balance of teacher-directed instruction and child-initiated learning, student responsibility for work and environment, caring behavior, problem-solving ability both socially and academically, and parental involvement and understanding.
For more information visit the Responsive Classroom website: http://www.responsiveclassroom.org/