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Elementary Curriculum



  • To help children learn to take better care of themselves, each other and their classrooms.
  • To help children learn “self-control” and not to “be controlled”.
  • To help children learn to build caring communities through social participation.

THE FIRST SIX WEEKS: A period during which we establish expectations and routines and teach the following skills that will allow children to work independently and responsibly in the future:

  • Stage 1: Whole Class Learning – getting to know each other by learning how to: listen, ask questions and share solutions to problems; put things away; follow classroom rules; carry out orderly transitions.
  • Stage 2: “Paradoxical groups” – establishes expectations for group work with and without the teacher’s immediate supervision – children learn to be productive while the teacher works with another group.
  • Stage 3: Independence and responsibility – lasts the rest of the year.

MORNING MEETING – Conducted in every class – community – building – greeting each other, sharing, problem-solving, role playing, guided discovery. A circle on the floor (or in chairs) may be used so that everyone is included, can see and be seen.

RULES – The Golden Rule is the basis for all. Members of each class work together to establish rules that will create an environment conducive to learning, where all feel safe, not only physically but emotionally, and where we all care about each other. Emphasis is on the positive – what we can and want to do, not the usual “Do not’s.” Logical consequences for forgotten rules are established.

COMMON LANGUAGE – In order to establish consistency throughout the school, staff makes an effort to use common language and practices. Some common phrases include: “Time out…” “I notice…”, “Remind me how we…” “What do you need to do to accomplish this?” “I expect…” “Show me how you might…”

COMMUNITY BUILDING – We need children to feel that each student has something valuable to contribute. They will learn to listen and respond with relevance and attention, to show concern for the feelings and viewpoints of others and to develop a capacity for empathy. Teachers and students will model behaviors and ways of expressing care through role-playing.


To create a classroom community and a school community through self-discipline & self-control.  In turn,



Thinking Maps is a language of eight visual patterns each based on a fundamental thinking process.  By visualizing our thinking we create concrete images from abstract thoughts.

How are thinking maps different from graphic organizers?

  1. Used by all teachers
  2. Based on 8 cognitive skills
  3. Applied in all content areas
  4. Used in combinations for depth and complexity
  5. Uses visual patterns
  6. Based on the brain research connection – understanding information through patterns

According to Robert Marzano, “Knowledge is stored in two forms: linguistically and non-linguistically.  Research proves that the more we use both systems of representation, the better we are able to think and recall knowledge.” Classroom Instruction that Works



Pathway chose Reading Street as the K-4 reading curriculum because it nurtures childrens’ love of reading, inspires confidence & builds and fosters reading foundational skills through all grade levels.

There is a wealth of lovable literary and informational texts, a strong phonics component, and various listening and speaking activities to encourage collaboration among peers and within classroom communities.

Vocabulary routines along with the use of Thinking Maps, engage all learners to build their oral vocabulary.  Students are asked to use the writing process & the research process in all grade levels and are periodically asked to present their findings.

Both a social studies and a science component are present in Reading Street, increasing a cross-curricular thematic mapping of lessons and units.

Please click on the link below for more information about our reading program.


Saxon Math is being utilized in all classrooms, grades K-5.  Pathway chose Saxon because:

  1. Incremental Concepts are taught in small, approachable progressions
  2. Distributed Increments are spread throughout the year, building in complexity, so that by the end of the year students have reached deep understanding and fluency
  3. Cumulative Practice and assessments include concepts from the most recent lessons as well as from earlier in the year, ensuring students retain all concepts and can make connections between them.

Saxon asks for a strong parent involvement in their child’s learning.  Math homework will be assigned daily, except for assessment days.

Please click on the link below to view the research on just how successful Saxon is in improving all students’ mathematical abilities & confidence.

Step Up to Writing is Pathway’s comprehensive writing program.  Not only does it foster an increase in the understanding of the writing process, it develops rigorous writing expectations, includes various writing strategies, engages all writers through differentiation, and includes an explicit focus placed on supporting students in producing organized, clear, and coherent writing.

Please check out Step Up to Writing’s research and results link below that ensures this program’s results.


FOSS Science kits are being used in all classrooms, 1st – 4th grades.  FOSS was chosen due to its inquiry based learning science activities and experiments. The hands-on materials, investigations and science notebooking (tracking observations and making judgments and evaluations based on data) engage all students.

The FOSS program continually monitors progress through both formal and informal assessments and increased oral and written vocabulary through the use of science notebooks, investigations and classroom discussions.

Please click on the link below for case studies and testimonials to showcase the success FOSS has in producing young scientists.