HCSD Elementary Academic Program

Hancock Elementary School
Academic Program
ELA INSTRUCTION: Daily instruction typically in 1.5 hour blocks of time
Balanced Literacy Program: Incorporates many reading approaches with the
knowledge that students need to use multiple strategies to become proficient readers.
Reader’s Workshop: An instructional model for reading that marries explicit
instruction in reading strategies with opportunities for students to practice each
reading strategy independently, with a peer, and in small groups.
 Interactive Read Aloud: A teaching context in which students are actively
listening and responding to an oral reading of a text
 Shared Reading: students join in or share the reading of a big book while
guided and supported by a teacher who demonstrates the reading of text with
fluency and expression.
 Guided Reading: direct instruction for 15-30 minutes in small, non-static
homogenous groups to teach targeted reading skills
 Word Study: focused attention to words and word elements (e.g., phonemic
awareness, phonics)
 Literacy Centers: small group, independent activities that allow students to
participate in purposeful and authentic literacy activities
Writers’ Workshop: A formal strategy to teach the writing process from planning
to drafting to editing to final copy.
 The Writers’ Craft: what authors do and how they get ideas for topics, revision
strategies, etc. Examine strong leads, details, voice, organization, vocabulary,
and conventions.
 Writing About Reading: response and comprehension enhancement
 Spelling: using core sight words to learn more complex words, often
supplemented with literacy centers and homework.
 Handwriting: letter formation using the Verbal Path as provided by Fountas &
Pinnell, and cursive handwriting beginning in late 2nd grade
2. MATH INSTRUCTION: Daily instruction typically in 1-1.5 hour blocks of time
 Investigations by Scott Foresman
 Math their Way (Marilyn Burns);
 Problem Solving Activities: Problem Solving (Evan Moor Publishing)
 Math Facts/Fluency activities: Rocket Math
 Algebraic Thinking (Rotz & Burns)
 Smart Exchange (Smart Board math activities)
 Addison Wesley Textbooks and workbooks
 Study Zone website
 National Library of Virtual Manipulatives (NLVM) website
3. SOCIAL STUDIES INSTRUCTION: Instruction every other day for approx. one hour
Kindergarten: Students learn social studies concepts through rotating “themes.”
Grades 1-4: MacMillan/McGraw Hill Tests: standards-based materials to better
understand core social studies content and skills.
Grade 1: People & Places
Grade 2: We Live Together
Grade 3: Our Communities
Grade 4: New York
4. SCIENCE INSTRUCTION: Instruction every other day for approximately one hour
Kindergarten: Students learn science concepts through rotating “themes.”
Grades 1-4: Houghton Mifflin Science Texts: Curriculum covering life, earth, and
physical science topics and leading students to a deeper understanding of science
content and concepts.
ART CLASS: The elementary art curriculum at Hancock Elementary encourages it’s
students to think creatively, identify and solve problems, see the world in new
ways, and to utilize new technologies… just to name a few. It is expected that all
students will be able to make, respond to, appreciate and value the arts. The
elementary art curriculum also strives to collaborate with, expand upon, and
integrate core academics such as math, science and social studies as much as
possible. Lastly, it serves as a spring board for those students with a genuine
interest and talent in the arts to continue to further their art education and love of
learning well after they leave the elementary building.
Students receive approximately one hour of art instruction per week in the art
room. Art is taught by Wendy Reid-Jackson.
MUSIC CLASS: Students attend Music Class once per six-day cycle. In the
Elementary Music Program at Hancock, the focal points are expression, rhythm
and melody. Ms. Noyd works to prepare students for a performance; in so doing
they are developing skills in movement, singing, trust and public speaking.
Textbook curriculum used in the classroom follow directives and music samples
from Silver Burdett (a gift from Windsor Central Schools).
BAND CLASS: Fourth Grade students attend Band Class once per six-day cycle.
Students are introduced to various musical instruments and learn about basic
music theory. Interested students can sign up for individual band lessons.
COMPUTER CLASS: Students attend computer class once per six-day cycle. The
class is led by Evelyn Frair with the classroom teacher supporting and assisting
Evelyn. Students learn basic computer functions, keyboarding skills, and
document creation/editing.
PHYSICAL EDUCATION CLASS: Grades K-4: Students attend physical education
classes three times per six-day cycle (2 times as individual classes, 1 time with both
classes combined). Students exercise through various sports (baseball, soccer,
etc.), dancing units, and individual movement/gymnastics skills.
The Fountas and Pinnell Benchmark Assessment System is a standardized, teacheradministered, one-on-one assessment measuring oral fluency, reading errors, selfcorrection ratios, and is followed by retelling and comprehension questions by the
teacher. Depending on student performance, benchmarking occurs between 2 and 4
times per year. This benchmarking assists with guided reading groups and guides
future instruction.
The Fountas and Pinnell Leveled Literacy Intervention Program (LLI) is a smallgroup, supplementary intervention program designed to be used with children who
need intensive support to achieve grade-level competency. Students receive daily
intervention in a group of three students for 30 minutes. Intervention is provided by
Sara Atherlay, Heather Saxby, Jackie Beamer, and Sandy Barnes.
Reading Recovery is a highly effective short-term intervention of one-to-one tutoring
for our low-achieving first graders. Individual students receive a half-hour lesson
each school day for 12 to 20 weeks with a specially trained Reading Recovery teacher.
As soon as students can meet grade-level expectations and demonstrate that they can
continue to work independently in the classroom, their lessons are discontinued, and
new students begin individual instruction.
Sara Atherlay and Sandy Barnes serve in this capacity for half of their day.
Math: Jackie Beamer and Heather Saxby support students who do not meet state
expectations in the area of math. Students are given support for 30 minutes every
other day.
Language Arts: Sara Atherlay supports students who do not meet state expectations
in the area of language arts. Students are given support for 45 minutes every other
Grades K-4: Two special education teachers provide consultant teacher services in
the classroom. Students are also provided resource room (small group supplemental
instruction) support. Related services include counseling, speech therapy,
occupational therapy, and physical therapy.