Grade School

Kindergarten – 4th Grade
Primary Program

An effective primary program is broad enough in scope to accommodate the varying ranges in rate, timing and learning development that exist in young children. These needs center upon the whole child—intellectually, physically, emotionally, socially and spiritually! Our program is planned by teachers who know about the ways young children learn best. These are natural ways for children to use their capacities, to grow and to learn many skills. The St. Vincent de Paul primary program captures this natural process through planned opportunities in these areas.

Spiritual Development

Kindergarten through 4th grade is a wonderful time for teachers to support families in developing the Catholic identity of their children. It is a time to celebrate simple rituals and the traditions of the Church. Our program introduces children to a beginning faith vocabulary and provide a readiness for future catechesis in the faith of the Catholic Church. Religious growth will include:

  • A natural sense of wonder and awe that will foster a sensitivity to the sacred
  • Understanding the human person as an image of God
  • Experiencing God’s love through parents and teachers and clergy
  • Prayer that comes naturally and an enjoyment of ceremony, liturgy, and ritual
  • Interpreting Bible stories and other stories literally 

Language and Literacy Development

Language development involves speaking, listening, writing and reading. Young children are excellent language learners. They have learned to communicate comfortably with others and are already very aware of written language.

During the primary years, students experience the enjoyment of reading while they learn the foundational strategies and skills that will enable them to read independently. Students learn these enabling skills of phonemic awareness, letter names, sound-letter correspondences, decoding skills, high frequency vocabulary, and comprehension skills as they listen and respond to a variety of texts.

In our literacy program, children have the opportunity to:

  • Listen to and join in the reading of stories, songs, poems
  • Respond to stories through discussion, drama, art, music and movement
  • Work on projects collaboratively with other children
  • Explore sounds, letters, words, etc.
  • Experiment with writing by drawing, copying, manipulating magnetic letters
  • Browse through self-selected books and magazines.
  • Dictate stories
  • Read stories
  • Make connections between stories
  • Apply reading strategies

Mathematical Development

The young child acquires an understanding of mathematics and science through repeated experiences using concrete, manipulative material. Scientific and mathematical development occurs when we provide opportunities to:

  • Sort and classify
  • Count
  • Match
  • Measure
  • Solve problems of interest to the child
  • Recognize numerals
  • Become aware of time intervals and spatial relationships
  • Develop number concepts
  • Explore, question, observe, predict, discuss the world around him (living things, color, shape, size, texture, etc.)

Social and Emotional Development

Learning is an extricable part of the concept of self. No learning occurs that does not involve feelings, and what is learned affects a child’s concept of self. It is the role of our teachers to provide a climate in which democratic living is practiced, and one that is happy, realistic, interesting and friendly where each child can:

  • Learn from the group
  • Share and take turns
  • Practice politeness and thoughtfulness and respect

Creative Expression

As verbal expression develops so must expression through art, music, dance/movement, creative dramatics and literature. The children will have opportunities to:

  • Explore body movement through music
  • Use their voices in singing
  • Explore different art media—paint, clay, crayons, etc.
  • Express themselves creatively
  • Learn about famous artists
  • Understand the world about them through creative dramatics; role play, puppets.

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