top of page

What We Teach

Curriculum

At Bright Schoolhouse, our curriculum goes beyond traditional subject boundaries to provide a holistic and interconnected learning experience for our students. While we have outlined the specific components of our curriculum below, we strive to create an environment where students engage with concepts that naturally blend multiple subject areas. In addition to the focused subject matter described in detail, you will often discover our students involved in a diverse range of activities.

We apply the Workshop Model to our writing, reading, phonics, and math lessons, for immersive and interactive learning. Picture hands on centers over learning anchored at a table. Mini-lessons kick off a workshop block. These brief instructional sessions allow teachers to provide direct instruction on specific skills or concepts before students break into small groups and rotate around stations during the hour long workshop block. The majority of academic work takes place via hands-on activities, games, provocations, and manipulatives that encourage active learning and collaborative exploration. This approach not only reinforces skills and concepts but also promotes differentiation, allowing students to work at their own pace and level of readiness. Teachers serve as facilitators providing support and guidance as students delve into their learning experiences.

By embedding writing, reading, phonics, and math lessons within the Workshop Model, we provide students with opportunities to explore, practice, and apply their skills in a meaningful context. 

fractured fairytales from bright schoolhouse.jpg
fractured fairytales from bright schoolhouse.jpg

Teachers provide foundational skills and elements of varied writing styles including opinion writing, persuasive texts, informational texts, how-to and instructional writing, friendly letters, retellings, fiction, and personal narratives. Our learners use age-appropriate language and vocabulary to effectively express their thoughts and ideas. Writers are encouraged to review and revise their work to improve sentence structure, grammar, and punctuation, using developmentally appropriate strategies. Writing experiences are, as is the basis of our program, naturally scaffolded.

 

Central to the program are daily texts, carefully teacher selected high-quality literature pieces that students can learn from and be inspired by. These books span various genres from realistic fictions to fables, nonfiction to fairytales, and much more thanks to our ever growing library. Learners are introduced to effective reading comprehension strategies that enable them to actively engage with texts by making inferences, predictions, clarifications, and drawing conclusions. These texts inspire our writers workshops–ever connected learning! 

We also incorporate Close Reads as a valuable component of our literacy program. Close Reads provide an opportunity for students to engage in in-depth exploration of a selected text over the course of a week. Students delve deeply into a single text, examining it closely and critically. We visualize. Predict. Infer. Throughout the week-long exploration, students engage in multiple readings of the text, each time approaching it from a different perspective. 

Screenshot 2023-10-16 at 12.36.32 PM.png
Image by Kelly Sikkema
Image by Kelly Sikkema

Free play is regarded as a valuable part of a child's development. We believe that through play, children engage with the world around them, develop social skills, problem-solving abilities, and imagination. During learning workshops and designated free play time, students have the freedom to explore their interests, engage in imaginative play, and collaborate with their peers. Our learning environment includes a thematic Dramatic Play corner that changes monthly, allowing children to immerse themselves in various roles and scenarios, further enhancing their imaginative play experiences. 

ladybug study labeling at bright schoolhouse.jpg

We incorporate rotating natural science themes throughout the year, providing students with opportunities to explore and learn about the world around them. Through observations, experiments, and investigations, students develop a curiosity for scientific concepts, develop observation and inquiry skills, and deepen their understanding of the natural world. Themes include extreme weather, color theory, rocks and gemstones, and topics drawn from our learners’ interests.
 

Art is an integral part of our program, encompassing both guided experiences and process-based activities. Guided Art experiences expose students to various art materials, tools, and techniques. Students engage in activities such as creating self-portraits or expressing admiration for artists through their own artistic interpretations. Creative experiences encourage students to develop fine motor skills, express themselves visually, and appreciate different art forms. Process Art allows students to freely explore their creativity, experiment with materials, and express their thoughts and emotions through art. Those activities focus on the journey of creating rather than the final product, encouraging students to explore different textures, colors, and forms

ladybug study labeling at bright schoolhouse.jpg
Working on School Project_edited.jpg

As teachers and students embark on their mathematical journey, it is important to note that Bright math may differ from traditional teaching methods. The curriculum's focus on conceptual understanding and the "why" behind mathematical principles might deviate from how you were taught in school. We recognize the unique needs of gifted students in their mathematical growth. Therefore, we strive to tailor lessons to target the specific needs of these students, providing them with supplemental learning experiences that are rich in depth and challenge while maintaining the curriculum's focus, coherence, and rigor. By going beyond memorization of facts and formulas we encourage students to become mathematically fluent, capable of applying their understanding to real-world situations. We employ Illustrative Math to achieve these goals.

We are all about effective and comprehensive phonics instruction and promoting strong reading and writing skills in our students. Our approach is influenced by the UFLI (University of Florida Literacy Institute) instructional models. UFLI Foundations follows a carefully crafted scope and sequence, introducing students to the sounds and letters of the English language and the corresponding relationships between them. It is an Orton-Gillingham approach that uses both micro and macro level multi-sensory methods.Students progressively advance their reading and spelling abilities by applying their knowledge to increasingly complex words and texts. Employing an explicit and systematic approach ensures that students acquire each foundational reading skill in a sequential manner, enabling them to apply these skills automatically and confidently. 

ufli phonics at bright schoolhouse.jpg
bottom of page