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Grammar School (K – 4)

The goal of a Grammar School education is to bring a student to mastery of the rudiments of language, writing, and arithmetic. It is, as Dorothy L. Sayers has remarked, “on the whole, pleasurable.” Children love to learn, and classical education takes advantage of that. We emphasize language arts through direct instruction in phonics, classic literature, and early instruction in Latin, teaching in ways that delight and instill a sense of pride in a job accomplished. In Grammar School students are enabled to understand the mechanics of English, to appreciate its literature, and to gain insight into the language that provides the basis for more than 60% of its vocabulary. Mathematics is taught incrementally and thoroughly, preparing a student the demands of higher mathematics. The chart below provides a typical course of study for Grammar School students.

Pedagogical methods in the Grammar School (grades K-4) emphasize direct instruction, memorization, and mastery of basic skills in the context of a teacher centered classroom. Our curricular choices reflect this emphasis. In grammar school students are enabled to understand the mechanics of English, to appreciate its literature, and to gain insight into the language that provides the basis for more than 60% of its vocabulary (Latin). Mathematics is taught incrementally and thoroughly, preparing a student for the demands of higher mathematics. The chart below provides a typical course of study for grammar school students.

Reading at New Covenant

Reading and comprehension are the cornerstone of studies throughout life; that’s why we follow a unique approach that we feels provides the strongest possible start for the student’s academic career.Some schools emphasize the goal of children reading in kindergarten. While many students at new Covenant do begin to read in kindergarten, the goal of our program is to begin reading with some fluency by November of the first-grade year. This is because we take time to build an extremely solid foundation of language skills in preparation for reading. Most of our parents discover that when their children do start reading midway through first grade, they are doing so with even greater confidence and proficiency than students in programs that stress early reading. In short, the goal of kindergarten at New Covenant is to make a child “reading-ready.” Our phonics-based program is intentionally designed for the true mastery of basic skills “” not for mere acceleration.