Curriculum

Leman Virtual Academy

What we heard from our families is that they picked home schooling because they knew their children and had strong beliefs on what curriculum they wanted to teach. Our program has the following curriculum base. It is important that you know, if you would like to implement a different program than what we have listed we are open to helping you facilitate that choice. There are some metrics, in some of the States that we are authorized in that will need to addressed but we are very flexible in helping you teach what you believe in. Here’s a listing of the curriculum offerings we have already created:

A main reason Shurley Grammar was chosen was its use of chants and jingles in aiding scholars in memorizing.  This is in line with our philosophy on the ability of young children to memorize basic facts and fundamental rules, and to absorb information and knowledge more easily at a younger age.

  • Utilizes all learning styles: visual, auditory, kinesthetic.
  • Never teaches isolated concepts.
  • Incorporates scholar/teacher interaction.
  • Uses repetition to attain mastery.
  • Challenges accelerated scholars.
  • Promotes higher-order thinking.
  • Provides the connection between grammar skills, writing and effective speaking.

No matter how well scholars initially learn a concept, if they are not able to retain their learning, connect it to other concepts and apply it in problem solving situations, they have not reached mastery. Saxon Math is designed to support the long-term mastery and applications that will make a difference during testing, future education and careers. Taught at an accelerated level. Kindergarten, for example, will begin with Saxon Math 1.

  • Concepts are taught in small, approachable increments.
  • Increments are spread throughout the year, building in complexity, so that by the end of the year scholars have reached deep understanding and fluency.
  • Practice and assessments include concepts from the most recent lessons as well as from earlier in the school year ensuring scholars retain all concepts and can make connections between them.
  • Saxon math’s incremental, distributed pedagogy builds upon concepts from the Common Core domain throughout the year, articulating them over time. This allows scholars to gain deep understanding and long-term mastery of the Common Core State Standards.

Saxon Math is the math program chosen by Leman Academy of Excellence and has been implemented starting in Kindergarten and will continue throughout each grade level. Independent research, longitudinal studies, and field-testing provide clear evidence that the Saxon Math program shows immediate, dramatic, and sustained improvement for all scholars. The Saxon Math program is based on an incremental pedagogical approach that emphasizes practice, review and frequent cumulative assessment. Over the past thirty years, research has suggested that there is value in a teaching method that uses small, easily understood pieces of information that are distributed across an extended period of time.It is the Saxon philosophy that mathematics learning should build on prior learning. Saxon Math’s approach to math instruction aims to ensure that scholars both gain and retain essential math skills.

Test scores and success stories gathered from schools around the country using the Saxon Math program are reported in the Saxon Math Report Card. The information contained in the Saxon Math Report Card has been gathered from twenty-seven schools across the country to demonstrate the effectiveness and success of the Saxon Math program. Here is a small sampling of results of the schools in the Saxon Math Report Card and their reports on the effectiveness of this math program:

  • Math achievement and scores only increased over time
  • Test scores for mathematic achievement for grades 3 through 5 have consistently outranked the students in the state at the same grade level
  • 4th and 5th grade student scores on FCAT for math achievement have consistently risen each school year
    Over the last five years, scores on the ISAT for mathematics have increased in grades 3, 4 and 5 - achievement scores for 3rd grade students increased 30 percentage points since 2005
  • Since implementing Saxon Math in 2006, students in 3rd and 4th grades at a rural school in Michigan have produced excellent scores for math achievement on the MEAP

Additionally, major findings from a study of the effectiveness of the Saxon Math program on elementary scholars concluded that the scholars who participated in grades K-3 made substantial gains in overall math achievement. I have also witnessed as an administrator, teacher and parent high scholar achievement and mastery of concepts for scholars in the Saxon Math program. Leman Academy of Excellence plans to teach Saxon Math at an accelerated level, beginning with Saxon Math 1 in Kindergarten, which should dramatically improve scholar achievement in math for our target population.

It is our contention that history should be the core of the curriculum, especially for grades 4-8. History becomes the unifying “discipline of choice” due to our belief that all aspects of life fit under its broad sweep.

Scholars read a “living” biography or two about a key person in the time period being studied. Whenever possible, primary sources such as diaries, journals, letters or speeches that the person wrote are used.  Scholars research in reference books, but try to use living biographies as the main books. Scholars enter key people’s names and events into a Book of Centuries (a copybook for older students), which is like a timeline in a book. History is taught in sequence in a historical timeline so learning is not fragmented for scholars and therefore makes sense.

  • Mapping skills are utilized.
  • Scholars memorize geographical and historical data.
  • Scholars create Copybooks/Books of Centuries to reflect their unit of study, thus becoming masters of the subject area.
  • Scholars recognize how events from the past shape our future.

The classroom is full of rich resources, biographies, maps, books and artifacts that reflect the unit of study, and are available for use by our scholars as they create their Copybooks/Books of Centuries.

We have video taped a number of our master instructors giving lessons on various grade appropriate topics. From these lectures we have built out complete units of study for the home school family to build their instruction around. With each history lesson, you will receive access to a step by step course that your scholar can take as well has an interactive syllabus with dozens of resources for you to use to dive deeper into a subject should your scholar like what they are learning. We’ve organized, searched and built out a deep and rich content base for you to quickly find and use to enrich your instruction.

Effective instruction in science will be offered through hands-on experience and observation. Scholars are encouraged to ask questions about how their world works and seek answers, make observations and discuss findings, to be actively engaged in learning about science, technology, engineering and math as they learn to view the world through a scientific lens.  Scholars will use the Paige Hudson series of Classical Education in Science.

  • The teaching of science will be heavily focused on the Socratic method of giving the scholars foundational information and then asking questions that encourage critical thinking and assessment skills.
  • The classroom also reflects the unit of study and the home school family is encouraged to use online resources provided or visit local libraries who’s bookshelves are rich resources for the scholars to gather their research and collect their data to write their observations in their Copybooks.
  • Younger scholars will have the opportunity to solve problems through inquiry, exploration and observation.
  • Science experiments are provided for each unit. We attempt to provide an online interactive experiment, a low cost experiment on the particular unit designed to be completed with local household items and a more expensive experiment designed to be done in a group. Carolina Biologics is our provider for the more advanced experiments. All experiments are hands-on for student discovery and observation through the active process of investigation.
  • A systematic approach to the exploration of science is established through hands-on learning experiences offered by the teacher.

Scholars will start Latin instruction beginning in grade 3 and continuing through grade 5.  The goal of our Latin instruction is to train scholars in grammar, vocabulary and English derivatives in a lively, interactive way that is perfectly suited to scholars in the grammar stage. The study of Latin continues through grades 6-8, the logic stage, as scholars delve deeper into the structure and meaning of language. Latin research supports will greatly enhance vocabulary, reading and comprehension skills.

A course of study that includes Latin can make significant scholar improvement by developing their reading skills, vocabulary skills, study skills, math problem solving abilities, as well as attain higher test scores. Our Classical educational program recommends the home school scholar receive 30 minutes planned each day for the study of Latin starting in the 3rd grade, with an increase to 40-45 minutes of study in the 7th and 8th grade.

Each month, beginning in Kindergarten, scholars will have a piece of prose or poetry, a patriotic piece, or other piece that is connected to the curriculum to memorize and recite in front of the class. Proper poise, posture, speech, volume and overall public speaking skills are emphasized. We will encourage your home school scholar to be comfortable in front of peers and adults in delivering their recitations.

Scholars at Leman Academy of Excellence will participate in a structured art class, music, and physical education classes. Art will have an emphasis on art appreciation. The principles and fundamentals of art will also be taught. Music will have an emphasis on music appreciation, and elements of music will be taught.

The curriculum at Leman Academy of Excellence has been carefully chosen to reflect our mission and philosophy. The academic staff has developed and align the curriculum maps, with their sequence of essential learning outcomes, assessments, resources, purchased instructional materials, to ensure your scholar receives a rigorous, well rounded Classical Education. We believe these objectives serve as the foundation to the subject areas taught and provide the framework to the academic requirements and end of year outcomes for scholar. We have deliberately chosen curricular programs, resources and materials with our philosophy in mind to ensure high scholarly achievement, be rigorous in nature, and encourage scholars to reach their full academic potential. Our reading and math instruction is designed to be a year ahead. In the home school environment, we work to place and support your scholar right where they are academically. We then set the academic bar in line with our campus instruction to ensure we are making strides in all our students learning.

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