Mrs. (Anita) Wasson
Anita is our classroom teacher for grades 3 and 4. She has a B.S. in Elementary Education from SUNY Cortland and an M.S. in Rehabilitation Counseling from the University of Scranton in Pennsylvania. In addition, she holds a NYS permanent teaching certificate, and is an active member of the Dryden Teachers Center. Anita loves the school’s family atmosphere, in which she has the freedom to pray, worship, and talk about the Lord with her students and colleagues. Anita is married and resides in Endwell, NY. She has two adult children. She also has one grandchild who is currently attending CLCS. Anita is passionate about international folk dancing, and she also enjoys bicycling, swimming, running, walking, and reading.
Miss (Tonika) Jones
Tonika teaches Spanish to our students at all grade levels. Known for her enthusiastic and energetic teaching style, she has helped instill a deep love and appreciation of foreign language and culture into our students. She also provides support in the 7/8 classrooms. Tonika graduated from SUNY Cortland with a B.A. in English Literature and Spanish Language. She served at SUNY Cortland as a residence hall director and as the interim coordinator of multicultural affairs for three years. She also assisted adults with developmental disabilities at the Franziska Racker Center and was an ESL tutor. Tonika greatly appreciates how life at CLCS centers around Christ and the leading of the Holy Spirit. In addition to teaching, Tonika enjoys crafting, worshiping, singing, and spending time with people who are precious to her.
We begin each day with Bible study; reading Scripture positions us for the day ahead. We look for life application with a focus on what Jesus would do in any given situation. Students memorize Scriptures consistently throughout the year as well.
We put special emphasis on prayer. Each year, the students create a prayer chain as a visual reminder of God’s faithfulness. Students pray each week for concerns that they’ve written on a strip of paper. As prayers are answered, we hang them up. At the end of the year, we are amazed at the way God has answered our prayers.
In Language Arts, students hone their reading skills. We use fun trade books to work on reading comprehension, decode unfamiliar words and learn new vocabulary. Book discussions are lively and thought-provoking. When we have a literature circle, each student has a “job.” For example, the Discussion Director independently crafts questions to spur discussion and shares at the group meeting. Book projects enhance learning as well.
For weekly spelling tests, students study words in a variety of ways and learn how to use them. In writing lessons, we emphasize the composition process. Students practice many different kinds of writing, including poetry, book reviews, and experiential writing. Weekly grammar instruction rounds out the language arts program.
Building Spelling Skills Evan-Moor
Grammar Workshop (Level Green) Sadlier – Oxford
Teacher selected Trade Books and supplemental materials
Vocab Workshop- Sadlier-Oxford
Our curriculum is set up on a two year cycle. In addition to basic geography instruction (landforms, continents, oceans, countries), we places special emphasis on New York State. We study important landforms, people, historical development, and current events on a both state-wide and local level. Hands-on activities reinforce concepts, whether we make salt maps or take field trips to places like the Eight Square School or the Bement-Billings Farmstead.
During the last quarter, students engage in a lengthy report process. Grade 3 students choose a country to research while Grade 4 students delve into gathering information about a city in New York State. The report also incorporates a fun project tailored to the interest of Grade 3 students, while Grade 4 students receive a poster making assignment to encourage creative design skills. Since this is a first-time experience for most students at this level, parents are quite involved in each step of the process. It is a great learning experience and yearly highlight for students and parents alike.
New York: Adventures in Time and Place MacMillan/McGraw – Hill
Daily Geography Practice Evan – Moor
Trade Books to support topics taught
For all new concepts, we begin in the concrete and move toward the abstract. Students often use manipulative materials and games to practice new learning. The next step may involve pictures in lieu of hand-held materials, and finally moving to pencil and paper calculations. Our overarching goal is to build confidence and enjoyment of math in all its various forms.
Math instruction is implemented at two separate levels. When instruction is given to one group, the other group is working independently on skill reinforcement activities. For Right Start, Students use a variety of games for reinforcement of concepts. They also keep a math journal when practicing new learning. The program uses an abacus as the basis for understanding, encouraging students to “see” numbers in groups of 5 and 10. Right Start is very strong in its emphasis on consistent practice of basic facts for all operations.
Envision Math (Levels 3-4) Scott Foresman – Addison Wesley
Greg Tang Math resources
Science is filled with fun! Our course is set on a two year cycle with weekly lab sessions and lab wrap-ups. In the lab, students are given hands-on experience using the scientific method: practicing skills such as making observations, taking measurements, and recording and interpreting data. The wrap-up includes reading, writing, and application of content presented in the textbook. Students spend approximately three weeks exploring various topics including magnetism and electricity, properties of matter, energy, and weather. Every other year, we study embryology: we explore the life cycle of a bird by hatching live chicks! (This study is done in conjunction with Cornell Cooperative Extension.) Additionally, students participate in a school science fair each year.
Science (Levels 3-4) New York Edition – Scott Foresman
Picture Perfect Science Lessons, Using Children’s Books to Guide Inquiry, 3-6, – NSTA Press
When the students enter the classroom, we begin with a conversation reviewing basics by saying Spanish words that correspond to pictures, objects, or lists that are pointed to or by responding to questions. Depending on the level, it might include repeating the alphabet, colors, numbers, and classroom objects. We also practice saying the date and describing the weather.
The Total Physical Response approach helps students use motions to demonstrate the meanings of 10-20 action verbs. We begin the lesson with worksheet activities that may include coloring, fill-in-the-blank, translating, or cutting and pasting. In addition, we enjoy related activities like painting, making posters, eating food, learning Spanish songs, making puppets, play “store,” dress-up, vocabulary bingo, and other games.
Teach Them Spanish! (Grades 3 – 4)