Primary School Houston
Please find detailed information about each of the subject areas students in Primary are enrolled in. The Fay School puts great emphasis on ensuring a well-rounded education for each student.
Students in Primary I and II are introduced to the fundamentals of reading readiness through a strong introduction to phonological awareness, letter recognition, and understanding the sound structure of spoken language. The students develop necessary skills, which lead to the development of comprehension through listening and retelling.
The foundation of the program used in Primary I creates a joyful approach to learning with the use of Frog Street Press. Frog Street Press provides a means for measurable gains in student achievement. It is inclusive of Conscious Discipline, which supports social and emotional intelligence and in turn cognitive performance. Frog Street Press provides for whole and small group instruction, which allows for differentiation in learning strategies. Additional online resources provide teachers with the necessary innovative technology and strong interactive lessons.
The foundation for the program used in Primary II is Neuhaus’ Reading Readiness Skills Program. This program introduces the students to the foundational skills necessary to become assured readers and accurate spellers. Letters are introduced with frequency and in a variety of hands on multisensory activities. Once the students can associate with the letters, the gained knowledge enables the students to decode unfamiliar words and begin the early reading process.
Math Readiness in Primary I and II develops concepts and skills over time and in a wide variety of contexts. The applications are dynamic and meaningful to the student.
Primary I utilizes a math readiness program that builds a strong foundation of numbers and operations, which includes number recognition, rote counting, and sequencing. The students begin to understand and apply patterning and sequential understanding in meaningful ways. They are able to recognize attributes and use a variety of measuring tools.
Primary II uses the Everyday Math curriculum. In the Everyday Math curriculum, number skills and mathematical concepts are not presented in isolation but are linked to situations and contexts that are relevant to everyday lives. Everyday Math encourages students to explain and discuss their mathematical thinking. The Primary II student participates in group lessons as well as independent practice of concepts and skills through daily rotations. These small group rotations provide additional concept reinforcement on skills being taught and allows teachers to differentiate the instruction.
In Social Studies, Primary I and II utilize thematic units to incorporate and promote increased awareness of self, family, community, country, and the world. The students actively learn the meaning of respect, equity, cooperation, and citizenship by recognizing that community begins in the classroom. The curriculum allows the students to develop an awareness and acceptance of other cultures and traditions.
In Science the same unit based approach is used in addition to resource support from the MacMillian-McGraw Hill based curriculum. The students explore units in the following:
- Our Earth
- Weather and Sky
- Motion and Energy
Primary I and Primary II students use a variety of methods to discover and acquire a greater understanding of key scientific concepts that will build the foundation for growth and curiosity.
The Music and Motor Program at The Fay School is designed to help children explore and gain an understanding of elements of movement in relation to others and the environment including the concept of personal, common, and shared space. It is a program that helps the child define his or her basic locomotor and non-locomotor skills that are important in successful daily living. The program helps the child’s coordination, balance, agility, flexibility, and general fitness. The program allows for the child to experience movement on his or her own through the use of space, shape, force, time, steady beat in music, and the rhythm of the word. The totality of the program enhances the child’s self-image, creative thinking, and control of movement through experiences and the use of problem-solving techniques. The Music Motor Program is a fun program enjoyed by all.
The Spanish program at the primary level starts in Primary II and is focused on repetitive and comprehensible input in the target language through song and storytelling. Students begin to acquire the language and respond with motions. Props, toys, pictures, motions, and student actors play a vital role in allowing the students’ acquisition of the language to grow. Responding in the target language comes over time, similar to learning a native language.
The Wolf Library serves our Primary students and their teachers and parents as well. Once a week, students come with their classes to the library to listen to a story and to check out a book. Our collection is curated to offer the best in literature for our youngest students. Picture books and engaging non-fiction books are read and offered to our children for check out each week. Listening skills, language development, and a love of reading promote literacy amongst our youngest students. Author visits enrich their learning and expose them to actual authors and illustrators.
At The Fay School, our students learn to be good consumers and discerners of information. We provide an interactive and safe environment with cutting edge, age-appropriate technology to enhance learning in a digital world. Technology is a daily part of classroom instruction and is integrated in a forward-thinking and innovative way. This prepares our students to have independent and collaborative experiences through the consumption of digital resources for instruction, research, production, and assessment.
In the Primary Division, students have access to iPads and interactive whiteboards in the classroom. While the Primary Division does not attend weekly technology classes, they do use technology daily in the classroom.