APW Elementary School hosted two curriculum nights in early October for students and their family members. The first curriculum night event was for students in the school’s primary grades, universal pre-kindergarten through grade two, and the second for students in the school’s intermediate grades, grades three through six.
Each curriculum event gave parents an opportunity to see their child’s school and classroom as well as meet classroom teachers, special area teachers and building principals.
Students were invited to enjoy craft time or a movie in the cafeteria while parents were given an opportunity to speak directly with their child’s classroom teacher to learn about their child’s daily schedule, what the class is currently working on, homework assignments, and what to anticipate for the remaining year.
A special component to each curriculum night was an informational session about the new Common Core Learning Standards (CCLS) and six shifts to math and English language arts.
Primary Principal Julie Woolson and Intermediate Principal Michael McAuliff said that through CCLS the students are preparing to be college and career ready. “Being ready for college and a career doesn’t start in a student’s senior year, at the high school or at the junior high school. It starts at here, at the elementary school, in universal pre-kindergarten,” McAuliff said.
Echoing McAuliff’s sentiments at the primary curriculum night, Julie Woolson said, “The first few years of a child’s education build a foundation. A solid educational foundation is the basis for future academic success.”
Some of what the CCLS encompasses are higher standards for ELA and math. Students are reading more non-fiction and challenging texts and the vocabulary, reading and writing assignments are all connected.
Students are also being asked to apply math concepts to real world situations and are spending more time on less concepts – stressing the importance of quality over quantity.
“The standards are high, but our students can do this if we all work together,” McAuliff said to parents.
Parents are encouraged to visit www.EngageNY.org for more information about CCLS as they apply to their child’s education.