Curriculum

Everyday Mathematics

Everyday Mathematics is a program developed by the University of Chicago School Mathematics Project. It has been rigorously tested and successfully implemented in many schools throughout the United States. Unlike other math curricula, Everyday Mathematics encourages students to develop and explain their own mathematical thinking, places mathematical concepts into everyday life situations, and provides a wide range of methods for developing basic skills. For more information, please visit http://www.everydaymath.uchicago.edu

Comprehensive Early Literacy Learning

CELL is an approach to reading instruction that integrates language awareness throughout the classroom. It begins with children’s oral language and uses story telling, dialog, discussion, and games to support the acquisition of language skills. We also use Orton Gillingham/Big Ideas in Beginning Reading for phonemic awareness and phonological decoding strategies. Orton Gillingham recognizes individual learning differences and accommodates visual, auditory, and kinesthetic learners allowing students a high degree of success in order to make reading a happy and rewarding experience.

For more information visit: http://www.cell-exll.com and http://www.orton-gillingham.com

Handwriting Without Tears

HWT is a writing curriculum that uses multi-sensory techniques to break the process of handwriting down into a series of discrete steps. Students are taught consistent habits of letter formation and pencil grip that lead to legible and fluent handwriting. For more information visit, http://hwtears.com

Science

There are two major components to Dragonfly’s environmental education curriculum: Everyday Ecology, the principles and practices that teach sustainable lifestyles, and rigorous science lessons that are taught during structured blocks at a developmentally appropriate level.

Everyday Ecology includes the formal policies and the practices and traditions  that comprise teaching about sustainability on a daily basis, including recycling, composting,and repurposing. Seasonal celebrations, significant outdoor time, cooking and work in the garden and the Santa Fe River also play a large part in this part of Dragonfly’s curriculum.

Science classes are inquiry-based and hands-on.  A variety of teaching methods are used to get information across, and can be summarized by action verbs; measuring, weighing, observing, describing, listening, touching, smelling, watching, building, conferring, collaborating, reading, drawing, writing, and demonstrating.  The students often produce tangible work in their science classes, such as: a journal, a chart, a drawing, or a model.

“No Child Left Inside”

Dragonfly School is proud to be a founding member of the New Mexico “No Child Left Inside” Coalition, part of a national movement to connect children with the natural world. This movement is in response to research that suggests that interactions with nature provide children with a wealth of benefits that include increased mental health, better concentration, and higher levels of happiness. Much of our science instruction takes place within this context. More information is available at http://www.cnaturenet.org

Art

Art is a part of every classroom experience at Dragonfly. Hands-on experiences offered through diverse media and materials allow children to understand their world through all five senses. While unstructured art activities with “loose parts” allow for unbridled creativity and problem-solving, more structured projects are also offered to encourage and support specific skill-building with a variety of tools and materials.

 

Movement

Ingrid Hurlen is a master teacher of creative dance and movement for children and adults with over 25 years of experience. Based on the Brain Dance, developed by Anne Green Gilbert, Ingrid’s classes are fun, stimulating and provide creative learning experiences for all ages. Her careful attention to diversity, literacy and earth stewardship has earned her warm praises from both parents and teachers. She is also a UNM Continuing Education Trainer with a focus on Movement and Music for Early Childhood Education. Ingrid has also been a performer since 1988 with the Tickle Tune Typhoon, a nationally award-winning music and dance performance company for the whole family. Ingrid offers movement class to every student at Dragonfly weekly.