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    Academic Programs

    Laurelhurst has a comprehensive reading program that ensures all students not only learn how to read but also comprehend what they are reading. Teachers use a variety of reading materials and teaching strategies to ensure students develop strong reading skills, including:

    • Houghton Mifflin – Reading Adoption for Grades K-2
    • Pegasus – Reading Adoption for Grades 3-5
    • Junior Great Books
    • Guided Reading Groups
    • Literature Circles
    • Reader’s Workshop

    Reading Support
    Laurelhurst has several programs for students who need help toward being able to read at grade level.

    Sound Partners Tutoring
    Sound Partners is a one-on-one tutoring program emphasizing phonics and decoding skills. Students in grades K-2 may qualify to receive this type of instruction. In kindergarten and first grade, the focus is on learning letter names and sounds and reading smoothly. The second grade program continues to help students with fluency, decoding and comprehension.

    LAP (Learning Assistance Program)
    LAP is small group reading instruction for grades 1-5, provided by our reading specialist. This program teaches reading skills through guided reading, writing in response to reading, word work, and test preparation. Children work on materials that are similar to those used for classroom instruction. The LAP Program and the Sound Partners Program complement each other.

    Laurelhurst’s reading specialist is partially funded by the PTA this year.

    Laurelhurst focuses on the state standards in writing, specifically targeting forms of writing that are difficult for students. Teachers provide instruction and practice in expository forms of writing that are integrated meaningfully into units of study. In science, for example, students write in their notebook to record observations, make hypotheses, support hypotheses with data and evidence, draw conclusions, compare and contrast, etc. Students are expected to clearly and concisely explain their thinking in writing on a variety of topics. Primary grades teach writing through Writer’s Workshop following the Units of Study curriculum.

    Mathematical Thinking and Problem Solving
    Laurelhurst has a comprehensive math program that helps students master the basics and develop excellent problem solving skills. Students learn to construct math concepts through a variety of hands- on experiences. These experiences give the students a strong foundation for developing critical problem solving skills and strategies. Students are expected to be able to explain the logic behind how they have solved a problem. Classroom teachers use Everyday Math and other supplemental mathematical curriculum.

    Math Support
    Extra math support is provided by math tutors. Each grade level has three math tutors assigned to work with students that have been identified as needing additional support. The tutors will work closely with the classroom teacher so that their support is aligned with the math curriculum. These math tutors are funded by our PTA. Pipeline Tutors from the University of Washington and parent volunteers also provide additional support for individual students.

    Laurelhurst is creating a new generation of budding scientists. A hands-on science program developed by the National Science Foundation has been implemented very successfully. The curriculum helps students develop sophisticated scientific inquiry skills used by scientists:

    • Interpreting data and graphs
    • Making inferences, including evidence
    • Comparing and contrasting
    • Explaining sequences and cause and effect
    • Making persuasive arguments, including evidence
    • Explaining conceptual understanding, including supporting details and evidence

    Library and Computer Lab
    Our librarian and technology specialist collaborate to create a strong technology and resource program for grades K-5. Students use technology in the computer lab and library throughout the school year to enhance and build upon curricula already in place in the classroom. All classes are scheduled for both Library Class and the Computer Lab at least once a week. Teachers often schedule additional times so that students can do special independent or class projects using technology.

    Physical Education
    The focus of Laurelhurst’s P.E. program is to teach children the importance of being physically fit and ways in which to incorporate fitness into their daily life. The program is fun, active, and skill-oriented. Kindergartners go to P.E. once a week. Grades 1-5 go to P.E. twice a week. Along with the regular program, some Laurelhurst students participate in high level skill performance teams. Practices for these teams are during lunch recess. The PTA provides support of the P.E. program through the purchase of equipment and materials along with contributions towards maintenance and repair costs. Our P.E. teacher can often use the assistance of parent volunteers. If you are interested in volunteering, please call 252-5427.

    Instrumental Music
    Elementary Instrumental Music is offered to students in grades four and five. Classes meet once a week during the regular school day. The parents furnish instruments and music books. Loaner instruments are available for students on the free lunch program.