Kindergarten & First Grade
Kindergarten: The Kindergarten General Studies experience develops readers, authors, illustrators and problem solvers. Students acquire self-discipline and build self-confidence through success in their day to day experiences. Children are infused with a positive outlook towards school so they will always feel the joy of learning and become kind, helpful and positive role models. All components of the curriculum are designed to shape the individual child. In conjunction with our reading program, Journeys, students receive additional support through Fundations, a program presented in a structured scope and sequence with an emphasis on systematic phonics and word study. Fundations makes learning to read enjoyable while incorporating auditory, visual and motor-memory learning. Learning the correct way to write manuscript letters and numbers is an integral part of this program. Math begins with context-based situations and builds to more abstract problems using manipulatives, symbols and pictures. Young scientists investigate plants and animals, the basic needs of living things and weather. Developing an awareness of themselves and looking at people from the past and present encompasses the Social Studies program. Daily workshops offer children a powerful opportunity to develop independence, risk-taking, perseverance, initiative, creativity and reasoning—the “learning to learn” skills.
Kindergarten Judaic Studies instills in the children a love of Hashem, pride in their Jewish heritage and a love of the Torah. Daily activities build on the core theme of derech eretz: respect for Hashem, respect for others and self-respect. Students internalize Torah values through captivating stories, interactive projects, music and dramatic play. These timeless lessons are applied to the children's lives by studying the Parshat Hashavua (weekly Torah portion) and celebrating chagim (holidays). They build their Hebrew reading foundation using the otiyot machkimot method, which sets them on the path towards mastery of each letter and nekudah (vowel) and enables them to become confident Hebrew readers, the basis for all Judaic learning. Our SAFA teacher introduces conversational Hebrew to help them build comfort with our common Jewish language. Children leave Kindergarten inspired, confident and excited to continue their Jewish education.
Multi-Age Language Arts Initiative: Students in first through fourth grades join together on a biweekly basis to engage in a Multi-Age Language Arts program. First graders partner with second graders, and third graders with fourth graders. This literature based learning experience affords the children the opportunity to interact with their peers in small, flexible groups where they benefit through cooperative learning. Each child acts as both student and “teacher” as they learn from their teachers, one another, and also support their peers. Our teachers collaborate to create a dynamic and interactive experience, allowing each child to learn at their appropriate developmental pace, while showcasing their unique talents and strengths.
First Grade: Students in Kitta Aleph continue learning how to live their lives as committed Jews and understand the essential value of being a mensch—a person of integrity and honor. Our skills-based approach empowers inquiry, independence, creativity and diligence. Students gain a clear understanding of the relevance and application of the Torah to their contemporary, daily lives. The students are introduced to Chumash and the story of creation with an appreciation for Hashem’s guiding hand and the beautiful, scientific world. Students build confidence while learning k'tivah (writing Hebrew script). Individualized k’riah (Hebrew reading) groups, incorporating both visual and auditory modalities, allow each child to progress in accuracy and fluency. Visual aids and spirited songs enhance the storyline of each weekly Parsha. Each chag (holiday) is explored through interactive, creative projects and songs. We foster Ahavat Yisrael (love of our fellow Jews) by incorporating the different family minhagim (customs) of our diverse student body. A Kitta Aleph student is well-equipped with a strong foundation for future Judaic learning.
Students are immersed in a General Studies environment that inspires curiosity, ambition and perseverance. Our goal is to foster a solid academic, social and emotional foundation, encouraging independence, imagination and the building of self-esteem. Literacy by Design, our comprehensive, balanced literacy program, provides instruction in reading comprehension techniques and an in-depth development of vocabulary, allowing for both support and enrichment instruction. The Fundations program uses multi-sensory teaching techniques to reinforce phonics, penmanship and spelling skills. My Math teaches and reinforces vital math skills through real-world applications. Exploring the world and learning beginning map skills is the focus in Social Studies. Our budding scientists use observation and discovery to expand their knowledge of Planet Earth, matter, motion, plants and animals.