Curriculum and Instruction
Students engage daily in curriculum and instruction in reading, writing, math, science and social studies. In addition, there are several other classes, supports and enrichment opportunities that make up our students' program of studies.
Art instruction is offered once a week for grades K-5. Students are able to explore a wide variety of media and artistic techniques. Smocks are available for students; however, since art can be messy, please dress your child accordingly. Please take time when you visit Haynes to enjoy the numerous displays of student art, including framed works in the front lobby, glass-fronted display cases in both the front and back lobby areas and various bulletin boards throughout the school.
Students in all grades visit the library weekly. We have a collection of over 35,000 volumes of fiction and nonfiction books in all reading levels. Students are expected to read and are provided with support to help them choose that "just right book." Library and Research Skills, Coding, Digital Citizenship, STEaM, and the appreciation of books are all part of the curriculum in all grades.
The library is also open for students and classes as needed to complete class projects. Library materials may be checked out for a two-week period. Any lost or damaged items are subject to replacement costs. The library is open Monday through Thursday during school hours and limited hours on Fridays.
Music instruction is provided to all students weekly. The curriculum includes singing, movement, learning musical notation and playing rhythm and Orff instruments. Third graders learn to play the recorder. Instrumental music is offered to interested students beginning in fourth grade. String instruments may be studied at fourth grade with band instruments added at fifth grade. Instruction takes place during the school day, and students are responsible for making up the work they miss while attending their instrumental lesson. Instruments may be rented through the school or through private sources.
Physical education is offered to all students once a week. Students learn skills through a wide variety of games and activities. Sportsmanship and teamwork are heavily emphasized. Students should wear sneakers on their physical education day. If your child is unable to participate, please provide a note for the physical education teacher excusing your child from gym that day.
Spanish instruction is offered to most students in grades 1-5 once a week. The goal of this program is to expose students to the Spanish language and culture, as well as to integrate Spanish into the students’ everyday life. Developmentally appropriate activities involving singing, movement and role-playing are used as teaching strategies.
Haynes School’s students receive direct instruction in social-emotional learning from classroom teachers in daily morning meeting, weekly class meetings, as well as through universal lessons delivered by other specialists in our school community. There is regular classroom instruction using the Open Circle Social Competency Program to review “dangerous & destructive” behavior and to teach proactive conflict resolution skills. Anti-bullying lessons and presentations take place throughout the year. The summaries and links below include SOME of the curriculum and approaches that students experience at our school.
Open Circle • The core of the K-5 Open Circle curriculum integrates research findings in child development with best teaching practices. The curriculum's holistic approach involves training the adult role models in a child's life to teach and embody principles of communication, responsibility, cooperation, respect and assertiveness. These principles are essential for helping children foster healthy relationships. Children become more engaged and thoughtful citizens so they can enjoy productive, fulfilling lives. Our faculty are Open Circle trained. Click here to learn more about Open Circle.
Responsive Classroom • The Responsive Classroom approach is a widely used, research-based way of teaching that emphasizes social, emotional and academic growth in a strong and safe school community. Developed by classroom teachers, this approach is based on the belief that integrating academic and social-emotional skills creates an environment where students can do their best learning. Many Haynes teachers are Responsive Classroom certified. A few of the Responsive Classroom guiding principles are:
- The social-emotional curriculum is as important as the academic curriculum.
- How children learn is as important as what they learn.
- To be successful academically and socially, children need to learn a set of social and emotional skills: cooperation, assertiveness, responsibility, empathy and self-control.
Mindset • Individuals with a growth mindset see their basic qualities as things that can be developed over time through hard work, perseverance and dedication. These individuals believe that nothing has ever been accomplished without years of practice and learning. Individuals with a fixed mindset, on the other hand, believe that they are born with a certain amount of brains or talent and no amount of practice or work can change that. The faculty and staff at Haynes School strive to instill a growth mindset in each of our students. We praise the process of learning and making mistakes. It is through this process that students learn to persevere when a task is seemingly difficult. Students begin to feel more comfortable facing learning challenges and they may even be ready to seek out new learning challenges as a result. Click here to learn more about Mindset.
Social Thinking • Social Thinking helps children to understand “how to behave based on where we are and what we are expected to do at that time.” Understanding what is expected in any situation supports children in thinking about their own behavior, how it impacts others and ultimately themselves. At school, children can apply these learned skills to understand what is expected on the playground, at lunch or in the classroom. Click here to learn more about Social Thinking.
Zones of Regulation • The Zones of Regulation curriculum is intended to increase a child’s awareness of themselves by strengthening their ability to identify and regulate their emotions. The curriculum uses simple and concrete tools to categorize emotions, which increases a child’s ability to access the material. Emotions are categorized into groups called “zones,” which are then differentiated by color, specifically; the green zone, blue zone, yellow zone and red zone. Zones of Regulation helps children to label what they are feeling, and to match their reaction to the size of the problem. The curriculum also focuses on how their brain and body feel in each zone, and helps children develop tools to change which zone they are in, when warranted, to maintain regulation. It is great for our elementary students with various learning styles. Click here to learn more about Zones of Regulation.