Overview of Courses offered in Avalon

Grade 5 Social Studies

Our Social Studies curriculum for fifth grade begins with the foundation of our nation. Students will gain an understanding of several topics including the thirteen colonies, the Revolutionary War, writing of the Constitution, and formation of the United States government. Another area of focus is America's expansion westward, specifically studying the effects of gaining land west of the Mississippi. Topics such as relations with the Native Americans are of specific focus.

Grade 6 Social Studies

Our Social Studies curriculum for sixth grade focuses on the study of world regions and how they compare and contrast to our own. The students learn about each region's specific culture, religion, imports, exports, and governments across the globe. By gaining an awareness of diverse regions students become aware of their own region, culture, and how it differs from others all over the world.

Grade 7 Social Studies

Ancient Civilizations are the topic and focus in the seventh grade curriculum. Ancient Egyptians advanced techniques of building pyramids, mummifying practices, and defining characteristics of their ancient cultures are covered.Civilizations of Mexico and Central America; the Maya, Aztec, and Inca, are focused on as well. In addition, we cover the Medieval times. One of our projects for this topic includes the construction of medieval castles and helmets.

Grade 8 Social Studies

The Social Studies curriculum in the eighth grade begins with the Civil War. Students learn about each of the important battles, generals, as well as the advantages and disadvantages of the war. Other events reviewed are World War I and World War II. Detailed descriptions of the events leading up to each of the wars, during battle, and outcomes of the wars are studied. Other time periods covered include the Roaring Twenties, the Great Depression, the Cold War, and the Holocaust.

Grade 5-8 Language Arts and Writing

Language Arts consists of five components: reading, writing, speaking, listening, and viewing. We will be reading a wide variety of stories, poems, and novels from an assortment of authors with the goal of developing students’ higher-level thinking skills of analysis and evaluation. Students will learn to assess literature for a variety of story elements, literary devices, and an author’s purpose in writing. In addition, we will explore the various genres of literature, with students independently reading books of their own choosing from each designated genre and preparing presentations for the class.

Grade 5 Science

There are four major units: Earth in Space/Solar System, Ecosystems, Levers and Pulleys/Simple Machines, and Mixtures and Solutions. Within each of the units of study a STEM (Science, Engineering, Math and Technology) project will be integrated. The scientific method will be reinforced during laboratory activities. Students will be provided with ample hands-on opportunities in our inquiry based science program.

Grade 6 Science

The following units of study are covered in sixth grade: Sound and Light, Micro-organisms, Soil/Rock and Minerals, and Buoyancy/Density. Within each of the units of study a STEM (Science, Engineering, Math and Technology) project will be integrated. Students will be provided with ample hands-on opportunities in our inquiry based science program. Students at this grade level will also participate in the Avalon Elementary School Science Fair.

Grade 7 Science

The following units of study are covered in grade 7: Studying Materials Scientifically, Forces, and Motion, Ecology/Evolution and Structures of the Earth. Within each of the units of study a STEM (Science, Engineering, Math and Technology) project will be integrated. Students will be provided with ample hands-on opportunities in our inquiry based science program. Students at this grade level will also participate in the Avalon Elementary School Science Fair. Students in seventh and eighth grade will also have the opportunity to participate at the Jersey Shore Science Fair at Richard Stockton College.

Grade 8 Science

The following units are covered in grade 8: Genetics, Energy, Weather and Water (Chemistry). Within each of the units of study a STEM (Science, Engineering, Math and Technology) project will be integrated. Students will be provided with ample hands-on opportunities in our inquiry based science program. Students at this grade level will also participate in the Avalon Elementary School Science Fair. Students in seventh and eighth grade will also have the opportunity to participate at the Jersey Shore Science Fair at Richard Stockton College.

Grade 5-8 Mathematics

Students will become confident in their ability to do mathematics in all areas especially reasoning and probability, measurement, geometry, patterns algebra, number sense, problem solving and estimation. Students will use technology and other tools, including calculators as an integral part of the mathematical process. Students will communicate mathematically through written, oral, symbolic and visual forms of expression.

Grade 8 Algebra

Algebra I is an accelerated course offered to those students who have met the specific credentials. A student is expected to have exceptional arithmetic skills and excellent working knowledge of fractions, decimals, and other basic mathematical concepts. Most importantly, the student must possess strong independent study skills.

Avalon follows the new Common Core State Standards for Mathematics. Therefore, in Algebra I, students: focus on understanding the big ideas of equivalence and linearity; learn to use a variety of representations, including modeling with variables; begin to build connections between geometric objects and algebraic expressions; and use what they have learned previously about geometry, measurement, data analysis, probability, and discrete mathematics as applications of algebra.

Special Education

Our Special Education classes focus on math and language arts. The Orton-Gillingham supplemental approach to reading is used as well as the Davis learning Strategies for reading and writing. Our program also includes handwriting, phonics, word attack, oral and silent reading, comprehension vocabulary development and writing.

Physical Education

All students will work on game skills, hand-eye coordination activities, physical fitness, sports skills, teamwork and sportsmanship. Students will meet for Physical Education three to four times each week for 50 minutes. Grades 5 and 6 will be introduced to dual and team sports and grades 7 and 8 will refine the skills needed for strategy and teamwork for these activities. All students are required to wear running sneakers to class. Students will also be using the locker rooms throughout the school year.

World Language: Spanish

This course is designed to make teaching and learning an enjoyable and rewarding experience. Blending of the five C’s of communication, culture, connections, comparisons and communities will continue to receive attention. Varied activities will empower students to learn to speak, read, write, and comprehend spoken Spanish, and to do so in a culturally authentic manner.

Technology

Project-based technology literacy classes strive to make students comfortable using technology in the 21st century. We work with a variety of technologies to increase students’ confidence and in an increasingly digital world. Topics covered include productivity applications, web applications, digital photography, digital video editing, mobile devices and computing, basic computer use and management, and communication and collaboration software.

Art

The ideas, methods and projects in the art program are developed to enhance thinking processes integral to visual problem solving. The art activities are designed to spark students’ imaginations, promote their skill development, and encourage them to take risks as they engage in the creative process. The art program celebrates the creative thinking of the individual, the inventive and creative use of materials, and the impact of creativity on the school environment.

Music

General Music is available to all students grades 5-8, once a week for 50 minutes. Music touches on all domains of learning, including the psychomotor domain (the development of skills), the cognitive domain (the acquisition of knowledge), and, in particular and significant ways, the affective domain (appreciation and sensitivity).

Grades 5-8 will follow the NJ state curriculum standards for performing arts and further broaden the students' horizons in music theory, music history, and with the addition of drama. Students will learn how to read, write, and analyze music scores. Students will be required to write and perform their own original composition. They will be introduced to famous composers and trace the development of western music through historical story. Students will have the opportunity to write and perform improvised dramatic scenes. They will learn stage terms as well as utilization of the facial masque and negative space.

Health Education

The primary goal of health education is to provide our children with the knowledge and skills necessary to initiate and maintain a healthy lifestyle that will continue into and throughout adulthood.

The Health program at Avalon Elementary School follows the New Jersey Department of Education Core Curriculum Standards. The various topics covered are grade/age related and the information builds year to year.

UNITS OF STUDY:

Any concerns or questions please call Mrs. Bossuyt.


Financial Literacy- Grades 7 & 8

This program was developed to focus on the students creating their own personalized budgets, financial plans, and investing plans. The students can immediately begin to apply the learned skills in their life. The carefully designed exercises and activities will move the students step-by-step toward each of the seven core competencies that the program teaches.

Library Skills - Grades 5 - 8

This purpose of the school library/ media program in the 21st century is to develop students that will become effective users of resources, ideas and information. They will be exposed to great works of literature for reading pleasure and personal enjoyment. They will also use library resources and technology to gain, organize, manipulate and evaluate data that encourage and empower students to become lifelong learners and problem solvers.