Curriculum

Hirsch Academy is dedicated to providing an excellent education for the development of thoughtful and highly literate citizens. This is possible because of our engaging academic curriculum, highly qualified and supportive educators and staff. Hirsch Academy utilizes Core Knowledge, specifically Amplify Core Knowledge Language Arts, as the primary language arts curriculum. CKLA is aligned to the Arizona Common Core Standards and Core Knowledge Sequence exposes students to a wide range of historical, scientific, and cultural topics that develops a deep foundation of knowledge that builds upon itself year after year. Core Knowledge integrates world and American history, geography, arts, music and science seamlessly. We support our language arts programs with Grammar Workshop and various additional phonics supports to advance our English Language Learners. Our mathematics program is Singapore Math, with the specific curriculum being Math in Focus. The whole presentation of Math in Focus really challenges our students to think much more deeply and abstractly about mathematics more so than many other programs. Additionally all students have 24/7 access to Compass Learning which is a computer based customized learning program for both reading and math.

Every Hirsch Academy student will be provided the opportunity to master the standards in all content areas and given the extra supports to do so. In addition to our core content areas we incorporate Physical Education, Dance, Drama and our project based Core Knowledge class that blends the fine arts with history, geography and cultural studies. We have several free academic, social, music and art based supplemental programs that ensure the very highest quality of education for our students.

Core Knowledge Language Arts®

Core Knowledge Language Arts is a comprehensive program for teaching reading, writing, listening, and speaking while also building students’ vocabulary and knowledge across all literature domains in literature, world and American history and science. The CKLA program inspires curiosity by its rich non fiction content that provides strong background knowledge. Through the texts that students engage with they are provided a powerful and robust vocabulary that helps them to understand complex text so that true comprehension is attainable. Students will experience several domains and units throughout each academic year. They have a student readers as well as their own individual consumable activity workbook that goes along with each reader for each unit. Our 4th and 5th graders even have their own write-in poets journals!

Singapore Math: Math in Focus

Singapore math is a teaching method based on the national mathematics curriculum. Hirsch students use the curriculum that follows the Singapore methodology called Math in Focus, it is created for use in kindergarten through eighth grade. A major focus is upon preparing students for success in algebra. Consequently, algebraic thinking and expressions are introduced early and used frequently throughout the Math in Focus series.

Throughout the series, concepts are taught moving through a specific sequence from concrete to pictorial to abstract. Concrete learning happens through hands-on activities with manipulatives such as counters, coins, number lines, or Base Ten Blocks™. Manipulatives are used throughout all levels, but they are used much more frequently the younger grades.

Pictorial learning is learning through pictures and images. This curriculum uses pictures, drawings, or other visuals that illustrate the concept. The abstract stage is the more traditional and familiar way most math problems have been taught in the past, and it is practiced with numbers and symbols. Students who grasp concepts easily will likely do very well with this program, but students who struggle in math will also be also be very successful because teachers can slow the pacing and extend the concrete and pictorial lessons as well as offer extra support through guided practice.