English Language Arts & Social Studies

At our school, we understand that the education process for our students begins with a richer, deeper understanding our students, their distinct needs, their histories, and their communities.  Social and Emotional Learning has guided all our curriculum actions for the past three years.  Teachers have been trained (and receive ongoing training) on the importance and “WHY” of Social and Emotional Learning and how this impacts our relationships between us and our students.  We have implemented a data informed SEL survey which allows us to best serve our student SEL needs as well as staff and student feedback surveys which allow us to address discrepancies between practice and understanding.  

Our Social Studies curriculum has been staff curated since the beginning of the 2018 school year through a partnership with the UC Berkeley History and Social Science Project.  Each of our units are based on one of the Big Six Historical Thinking Concepts (https://historicalthinking.ca/historical-thinking-concepts).  Through this process, we are attempting to not just teach the historical events, but to show the students how to process them in the larger picture, how one event continues the path we are on, and how one event might change the path our society is on.  We want to strengthen the critical thinking skills in our student community and allow them a greater insight to those who have come before them, the fights and victories for equality which have happened for centuries, and how they, as community members, factor into their community at large.

 

In English Language Arts, our Reading with Relevance curriculum has had such an immediate and deep impact on our students and staff. Reading with Relevance (www.readingwithrelevance.org) is a literacy program that guides students and teachers through the process of reading relevant, culturally diverse, socially and emotionally rich literature. By integrating intentional social/emotional development into every lesson, we are creating a generation of learners ready to understand, question, and remake the world around them. Our goal is to ensure that we tell the stories of our community, that our history content relies on the voices of our community, and that our community is represented in our curriculum.  

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