K Grade Level Objectives

In kindergarten, we carefully, intentionally cultivate the genuine and lifelong love of learning. Students build strong fundamentals such as reading, writing, and math, but blended with relevant life skill principles such as relationship building and social problem solving—coupled with an introduction to the concept of accountability. 

What are Grade Level Objectives?

Grade Level Objectives are a purposeful sequencing of academic expectations. They describe what students are expected to learn in a school year. Curriculum is developed around Grade Level Objectives and teachers structure, sequence, and plan their lessons to meet these objectives.

Mathematics

In mathematics, our focus is on developing a strong sense of number. To build number sense, they count to 100, identify and write numerals, and compare and order whole numbers. Students continue to apply one-to-one correspondence and count by twos, fives, and tens. They use objects, pictures, and number models to find sums and differences, reading and writing the symbols +, -, and =.

Using estimation as a tool for prediction, students collect and organize data in tally charts, tables, and bar graphs.

They continue to identify and extend simple geometric and sequential number patterns as an introduction to algebraic reasoning.

As they develop the vocabulary to express concepts of geometry and spatial sense, students name and describe attributes to compare objects according to length, weight, and size.

Language Arts

With language arts for kindergarten children, our focus is on phonological awareness (identifying sounds in spoken words), the letter-sound associations of the alphabet, and language use (appropriate word order and sequence when asking a question or making a statement). Students continue to develop listening skills (listening for a purpose and understanding multi-step instructions), an understanding of the mechanics of reading, directionality, and identifying the parts of a book, including the author, illustrator, and title page.

Students also read poetry, fiction, and nonfiction and compare similarities and differences among authors, characters, and stories. They also produce personal responses to literature through writing, stories, and narrative poetry. In addition, the answer questions about books read aloud in class and learn to distinguish between a comment and a question. Students identify their first and last name, recognize all upper-case letters and most lower-case letters automatically. They learn to determine the meaning of vocabulary through context and picture cues during read-aloud and shared reading experiences, and they write a complete thought using a combination of phonetic and standard spelling.

Students also carry out multi-step directions, and print upper- and lower-case letters of the alphabet and the numerals zero to nine using standard form, proportions, and spacing. In addition, students develop an understanding of letter and sound relationships as they listen to and sing familiar songs and rhymes to promote language development. And they begin to read simple texts and speak clearly with appropriate volume and voice for specific audiences and environments as they retell, re-enact, and dramatize stories.

Technology & Information Literacy

During their Lower School years, students learn the basic principles of computer use, network organization, and word processing functions. They experience numerous opportunities to practice various technology tools, software, and computer programs that will help them build their foundation of skills, including reading, thinking, communicating, problem solving, and computing. Lower School students also learn to use technology and media to bolster their skills to collaborate and communicate as well as to access and evaluate information.

Kindergartners are also encouraged to use the library and other media to develop their reading skills. Stories covered include A,B,C books used to strengthen familiarity with and manipulation of the alphabet. Students learn the meaning of author and illustrator and their roles in the creation of a book. To build cultural awareness, kindergarten students listen to stories that take place in other countries. They also listen to poetry as well as fiction and nonfiction stories. Kindergarten students also enjoy participating in independent book selection. And our Accelerated Reader program begins in kindergarten.

Students at this level also use a variety of computer programs and applications to build and reinforce math, keyboarding, and graphing skills. And they use technology platforms, such as Smart Boards, to reinforce the skills they are acquiring in language arts. In term three, students explore websites as an introduction to the Internet.

Social Studies & Science

The school community is an overarching theme and the social studies and science programs. There are three interdependent components to our curriculum:
  1. The physical plant of the school (fall trimester)
  2. The people who inhabit the school as well as the role each person has in relationship to the school (winter trimester)
  3. The outside grounds of the school campus (spring trimester)

Each class will study a different part of the school and will be responsible to explain and teach the other classes about their discoveries. The skill sets of observation and recording, problem solving, mapping, and documentation will be employed throughout the school year.

Kindergarten science reflects of the natural curiosity of a child. Using the five senses, students will strengthen their skills of observation and understand how each sense provides a different piece of that observation. They will interpret and record their findings in a scientific manner. Integrated with our social studies program, concepts in science will also focus on the use of both renewable and finite resources as we explore the school environment.

The entire school community from PK through grade eight will be expected to be responsible citizens who develop an awareness of problem issues regarding sustainability and seek to solve them. Kindergartners will explore the issues of sustainability through hands-on exploration of our physical environment. The studies will be child-centered and directed by teachers. The studies will also be interest based, driven by the questions, explorations, and observations of each individual classroom. Therefore, the three kindergarten classes may each be exploring a separate issue pertaining to the sustainability of our school environment. Possible studies include: how we get our water at the drinking fountain, how the boiler works, and what type of materials are used on our building and why. We enlist the help of the school architect, engineer, maintenance staff, and science teachers to enable to us further our studies

World Languages: Mandarin & Spanish

In kindergarten, students continue to study the Chinese culture and begin the study of Spanish with an emphasis on listening and speaking skills. Our Spanish curriculum supports the natural curiosity of the five-year-old by using concepts from the science curriculum to form a context for the study of Spanish vocabulary.

Music

Kindergarten students perform with different rhythmic patterns as they add classroom instruments to poems and songs. They also study various composers and instrumental families of the orchestra and sing many songs that provide opportunities to learn to sing in tune. And they study Orff instruments (xylophones and metalophones), which are wonderful tools for creating music and feeling successful.

In music and movement classes, young students explore their gross motor movements and respond through movement to music of various forms, tempos, meters, rhythms, dynamics, cultures, modes, genres, and styles to express what they hear and feel in works of music. Students also learn musical terms and the relationship of notes on the grand staff. From this foundation, they are able to use the music software, “Music Ace,” which establishes a positive learning environment for creating music and enhancing listening skills for pitch. Students also document all they have learned by creating a music book. In addition, they have the opportunity to rehearse and perform with a full singing voice at three of Far Hills Country Day School’s most time-honored traditions: the December Holiday Concert, K-5 Closing Exercises, and the Kindergarten Diploma Ceremony.

Fine Arts

In kindergarten, students identify primary and secondary colors, differentiate between “alike and different” and “many and few,” give order to arrangements, identify variations in darkness and light, arrange objects in formal and informal balance, create texture in form, give expression to the faces of people, and understand repetition in works of art.

Physical Education

Kindergarten students continue to enhance the development of their spatial awareness as they focus on developing gross and locomotor skills, creative movement, and listening skills (especially following directions). Cooperative games are introduced at this level, and hand-eye coordination and flexibility are emphasized. The challenge course continues.

Our Admission Team

Rachel Yu
Associate Director of Admission

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