The language arts program develops competent readers who appreciate literature, effective writers who express themselves confidently and creatively, and compelling public speakers who are engaging and informative.
Language arts skills are taught in every grade daily and are designed to spiral development each year. In Kindergarten through third grade, students learn to read using a modified whole language approach with a strong emphasis on phonics. Students are offered enrichment and remedial activities - according to their individual needs - to supplement the curriculum. From fourth grade through eighth grade, literary content and critical understanding are emphasized by exploring literature in its various forms: poetry, short story, novel, fiction, and nonfiction.
The writing program is structured around a recursive sequence of brainstorming, thinking and planning, rough drafting, revision, proofreading, and final composition. Our goal is to foster and encourage focused and clear thought and to convey it through concise, effective and vivid prose and speech. All students are published every year in one of the school’s literary magazines. The Lower School’s print magazine, Cougar Cub, is published twice per year, and the Upper School’s online magazine, Cougar Online, is published four times per year.
Overall, the language arts program strives to create balance among reading, grammar, writing, spelling, and vocabulary and is closely integrated with all subject areas at all the levels in the school, which helps bring the close relationship among disciplines more sharply into focus.