Our goal at Grace Brethren is that our students desire to love God and love people as we continue to strive for academic excellence in the classroom. We foster an environment that all of our students are able to learn about the world around them through the subjects of math, science, social studies and language arts. All of these subjects are taught and presented from a biblical worldview which helps prepare them to engage our world with character, integrity and values. In addition to our core subjects, students at Grace are exposed to a wide variety of co-curricular and extra-curricular activities. These activities range from our outstanding Choir, PE, and computer classes to Spanish, drama, and robotics clubs that allow the students to explore and use all of the gifts and talents that the Lord has blessed them with.
K-1 is a developmentally appropriate kindergarten program designed to provide the child with a gift of time to facilitate growth in all aspects: academically, socially, emotionally, intellectually, physically, linguistically, and spiritually. The goal of the program is for each child to increase in confidence and independence in their abilities as they strengthen their skills in an activity-based academic classroom environment. Students are provided opportunities to participate in whole and small group learning as well as independent learning experiences. Our year focuses on zoo-phonics instruction that leads to reading short vowel words and math which starts with number sense and progresses to addition and subtraction. Additionally, K1 students participate in music, library, and P.E. classes each week. As a result, children who complete the K1 program are confident, independent, motivated learners who have matured authentically and are ready for success in the next level of kindergarten and their entire academic career.
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K-2 is a well-rounded academic kindergarten program, where the focus is on the whole child. Here, we bring together the emotional, social, academic and physical dimensions of a child, while integrating the spiritual truths of God’s Word into all subjects. In language arts, the focus is teaching each child to read. Reading, vocabulary, sight words and phonics are the language arts centers for the morning program. Students learn about the Bible through memorizing verses, learning Godly character traits and focusing on characters in the Old and New Testament. Math is taught with an introduction to each subject area. Students practice by using hands on math manipulative within centers and class work. Science, social studies and art provide a monthly theme in which students are able to use their five senses, creativity and hands-on learning to understand how these subjects relate to the world around them. The goals of K-2 are to help students to work independently and master these subject areas. This will enhance each student’s confidence and provide that important foundation for their future academic success.
First grade builds a strong academic foundation specifically in language and math. The language arts curriculum gives students a foundation for developing confidence and fluency in reading, phonics, and writing. In math, students build knowledge in the areas of number sense, algebra, and problem solving with hands-on manipulatives to enhance understanding. There is daily emphasis on the importance of God’s truths though Bible stories, verse memorization and prayer. Students begin to develop a Biblical world-view as they learn about important historical events and different communities around the world and see God's beauty in creation through observation and hands-on learning in science.
Second grade students are nurtured in a loving environment to allow them to grow spiritually, academically and socially. We aim to teach a solid foundation in the skills that are necessary for their future academic success, specifically in reading, writing, and arithmetic. We also introduce them to the world around them through science and social studies. However, it is our passion to educate the children in the understanding that true wisdom comes from the Lord. So while a strong academic base is our goal, we weave the fact that the hand of God is present in every area of learning.
Third grade, in many ways, is one of the most important year in an elementary school education. First and foremost, it acts as a transitional year as the children move from lower to upper elementary academics. Third grade is the bridge that prepares the students academically and organizationally for their first step along their educational path, laying the groundwork for future habits. For example, in mathematics, we will learn multiplication and division which lay a foundation for algebra and geometry. In history, the students will learn about the amazing founding of our great country and its founding fathers so they understand where our country came from and the principles it was founded upon. In English, students learn foundational concepts about sentence and paragraph structure which leads them to be future writers. Alongside the expanded coursework, students are also presented with new responsibilities such as their own desks to work at and organize an agenda book to keep track of their assignments, and their own Bible to study God’s Word. As a third-grade teacher, my goal is to prepare my students to be young, independent thinkers and learners.
Fourth grade is a year of adventure where the students grow within the classroom setting but experience what they learn in person with our exciting field trip to San Francisco and Sacramento. In this way, the students learn about the history of our great state but also get to experience it in person by panning for gold along the American river, touring the capitol building in Sacramento and viewing the Golden Gate bridge on their way to Alcatraz Island. In language, we translate those experiences into our writing curriculum. The students are introduced to the Excellence in Writing curriculum that begins in 4th grade and carries through our Jr. /Sr. High School. Students are taught the fundamentals of writing but also how to expand their vocabulary to write creatively. Throughout the year our goal is to develop our students’ academic maturity teaching them responsibility and good work habits to prepare them for upper elementary and begin to lay the foundation for Junior High.
Our fifth grade curriculum is designed to prepare students to succeed and mature both socially and academically. Our students learn about concepts like grace, holiness, sin and obedience in our Bible curriculum which helps them to grow in their knowledge of God’s Word and how to live character filled lives. Our language arts program continues with Excellence in Writing curriculum from fourth grade with the goal of continuing to develop our students as great communicators and thinkers. A major first happens for our students in fifth grade, they begin to have more than one teacher. The students rotate teachers for science and history to begin to prepare them for their future with multiple teachers while also allowing the teachers to further specialize in their subject matters. In math, the students begin to work through algebraic concepts training their minds to think logically and in complex fashion developing their higher level thinking skills.
The sixth grade curriculum and schedule is designed to prepare students socially and academically for Junior High. Students will begin the day in their homeroom and rotate classrooms throughout the day. The Bible curriculum concentrates on preparing students for God’s perfect plan for mankind. Students are taught that the Bible accounts are fact and that the Bible is used as the final authority in all guided discussions. English is broken into two main components: grammar and writing. Literature, spelling, and vocabulary are cross curricular being incorporated in English, history, science, and Bible. The Excellence in Writing program is utilized to help students develop skills to help them be able to express themselves more clearly and creatively. The math curriculum is designed to offer complete coverage of California’s grade 6 standards all while reviewing standards from previous skills. History will take students on an in depth tour of the ancient civilizations of Mesopotamia, Egypt, Israel, the Indus Valley, China, Greece, Rome and the Byzantine Empire. The science curriculum will develop and use skills through conducting research, writing, and making oral presentations in order to understand the physical world around us according to how God planned it.
The goal of our school library is to ensure that all members of our school community have equitable access to books and reading, to information, and to information technology. With over 10,000 titles in our library we are able to supply all the needs of the students and their grade curriculum.
During the course of the year there are several reading enrichment programs such as the "Six Flag's Reading Program" and the "Book It" program to encourage reading. Book Fairs are conducted twice a year in conjunction with Grandparent's Day and contests are conducted monthly such as the Poetry Writing Contest and Short Story Writing Contest . The library is open before and after school for the children to check out books and take Accelerated Reading Tests.
After weeks of observations, our 6th grade students turn in and display their science projects for the school to see.
The American Revolution comes to life in Grace Brethren Elementary 5th grade classes.
Grace Brethren Elementary School welcomes preschool students to a fun filled day for Kindergarten Experience.
The Grace Brethren Elementary Robotics team traveled to Sherman Oaks where they competed against 26 other teams.
Catapolt Cody and Beastmode Brandon have been on the elementary campus encouraging students to be STRONG: Selfless, Trustworthy, Refuel, Overcome, Next Level, and Grateful.
In Computer Lab our students learn to master touch typing and Microsoft Office including Word, Power Point, and Excel. Students are given time to take Accelerated Reader tests, and to keep track of their own reading goals. Fourth through sixth grade will use the computer lab to complete projects from their in class curriculum. Science, engineering, architecture and mathematics are taught through various lessons and computer programs. Mutli-media art projects and creative writing assignments are among students’ favorite activities, along with learning basic computer programming.
All classes have music or art each week. In music the children learn theory, experience ear training, do creative movement and compose on rhythm instruments. Students will be introduced to master composers and their music. They will learn to sing in tune and understand stage presence through Christmas programs and Spring concert.
The focus of our Physical Education curriculum is motor skill development, health fitness, play, physical movement concepts, and discipleship in a Christian lifestyle. Our program is built on the premise that Physical Education is an educational process that seeks to develop competency, understanding, and commitment in and about health fitness, motor proficiency, and physical movement.
The Physical Education department has a scope and sequence based on goals and objectives that are appropriate for all students. It includes a balance of skills, concepts, games, rhythms, and sports designed to improve their muscular strength and endurance, cardio respiratory endurance, and to enhance the cognitive, motor, and physical fitness development of every student.
Working at Grace is an amazing way to impact the lives of our youth to give them the guidance and encouragement so that they can nourish the gifts God has given them and help them to be all the God wants them to be. Kathy Wardle, 6th Grade Teacher