To Develop a Strong Foundation of Language Skills
The purpose of our Lower Elementary language arts program is to ensure that our students are able to read fluently with joy, and write articulately with ease. Strong language arts skills are essential to all future learning. Between the ages of 6 and 9, children are moving from acquiring language, to mastering it. At LePort, we provide them with developmentally appropriate work to both learn key skills, and to apply them repeatedly, until they become internalized and second nature. Once internalized, their conscious, deliberate effort can be fully directed to the intellectual content of the material being written or read.
Our language arts program in Lower Elementary (Grades 1-3) has three main goals:
- Writing mechanics mastery. To succeed in the higher grades, and to do well in life, students need to master the mechanics of writing—handwriting, spelling, capitalization, punctuation, and grammar. To achieve such mastery, they need to practice these skills repeatedly. The goal is automaticity: only when a child can accomplish the mechanics of writing without deliberate thought can he fully free up his mind for deeper thinking and creative writing.
- Fluency in reading. Learning in the higher grades largely occurs through reading. Reading fluently and with clear comprehension is critical to success in school, and is the entry ticket for enjoyment of literature and reading for pleasure. Our students read constantly, to themselves, to their peers, to their teachers, and we equip them with the vocabulary and academic skills (such as dictionary usage) that enable them to be fluent readers by 3rd grade.
- Enjoyment of language arts. We believe that students learn best when they are internally motivated by what they do. That’s why we offer a range of activities for our students, activities in which they apply what they learn in meaningful ways. From writing journals to our daily literature reading club, our goal is students who love to read and write, and who are confident in their ability to exercise these capacities.