- Prekindergarten & Jr. Kindergarten
- First Grade
- Second Grade
- Third Grade
- Fourth Grade
- Fifth Grade
- Character Education
- Specialists Programs
Prekindergarten: Learning to Operate Successfully in a Group while Maintaining Autonomy
Our multi-discipline and integrated curriculum encourages self-confidence, independence and good character, while also teaching the children how to participate successfully in a group setting. It establishes a broad foundation of knowledge, and teaches the prerequisite skills necessary for success in our Kindergarten.
Junior Kindergarten: Benefiting from the "Gift of Time"
Some students need the "gift of time" to prepare for Kindergarten. Often summer-birthday children and others who need more time to mature, benefit from a program that is more advanced than Prekindergarten, but not as rigorous as our Kindergarten program. In Junior Kindergarten, each subject area is taught to higher levels than in Prekindergarten, with alphabet skills to include both lower- and upper-case letters, and more direct instruction of sound/symbol relationships. The additional experience with phonetics and phonics sometimes is enough for some students to begin reading, which is then fostered individually by the teacher. Mathematical skills are also taught beyond Prekindergarten expectations, allowing JK students to learn to count further, match more numerals to the respective quantity, understand more complex concepts, and solve more complicated word problems. The same holds true for other areas of the curriculum. The Junior Kindergarten program may follow the same unit themes as Prekindergarten, but the content is broadened and more in depth, and the related projects require higher level skills.
The following information provides a “snapshot” in to the Prekindergarten/Jr. Kindergarten course overview for the month of November:
Seasonal theme: Fall/Fall Harvest
Social Studies & Science Theme: Family Traditions & Nutrition
Field Trips & Special Events: Veterans’ Day, Thanksgiving Feast
Ongoing Academic Units:
Amble through the Alphabet
• letter recognition; sound identification; initial consonants & vowels
• numeral recognition; sets; counting; one-to-one; simple + & -
• shapes; colors; sizes
Weekly Group Science
• liquids; solids; gases; inertia; explosions; simple machines
Ongoing Developmental Activities:
• gross motor skills; fine motor skills
Language & Cognitive Development
• listening; comprehension; speaking clearly; increasing vocabulary; memorizing; retelling a story; creative thinking
Social & Emotional Development
• adjusting to school; making friends; caring and sharing; following directions; learning to work; problem solving
Ongoing Specialists Activities: Music, Drama, Computers, Library
Learning to Focus and Engage in the Learning Process
Kindergarten at Warren-Walker School is a full day, academic and highly enriched, program. We believe wholeheartedly that bright, capable five-year-olds benefit greatly from our multi-faceted program taught by dynamic, experienced classroom teachers, and a cadre of talented specialists. Much of Kindergarten’s year-round special activities revolve around a very unique program developed by Warren-Walker School teachers called A Trip Around the World. The principal program is taught in small groups of students which allows for lots of student-teacher interaction, personal attention, and stimulating activities. The Kindergarten classes take all of their field trips together. The language arts program challenges students to read and write as they develop sound language skills and a love of fine literature, and Math is taught at an accelerated level to ensure that it meets the needs of our very capable students. This snapshot of one month in the fall is designed to demonstrate the overall breadth and unique qualities of the curriculum, while outlining the main themes and essential skills that are taught:
Language Arts: Initial Consonants; Letters in Words
Mathematics: Subtraction facts; Graphing; Counting by 10’s (our math program is incremental and repetitive, allowing for mastery and acceleration)
Social Studies: Discovering the USA; Maps; Colonization; Native Americans
Specialists: Spanish: family & house; PE: run & gallop; Music: Creative movement; Art: Thanksgiving; USA landscape & symbols; Computers & Library
Character Education: Courage; Interrelationships; Settling differences
Gaining Independence and Adjusting to More Demanding Academics
Astounding progress is made in all areas of language arts in First Grade. The selected reading and writing program ensures the key principles for success - phonemic awareness, letter-sound association, letter formation, sight vocabulary, listening, thinking, comprehension, and spelling. All are taught thoroughly and creatively, and the students emerge as strong, independent readers and writers. The program is supplemented with leveled readers to meet individual needs. Math is taught at an accelerated level - and success is ensured through direct instruction of incremental skills, student participation, hands-on activities, and repetition. Mental mathematics is an emphasis with multi-sensory approaches that build confidence and develop a solid foundation in the language and concepts necessary for a lifetime of success in mathematics. In both reading and mathematics, our children achieve to outstanding levels on standardized tests. Social studies and science activities are woven into the curriculum, introducing interesting and exciting topics of study. Both reinforce the basic skills of reading, writing, and mathematics. First grade is an exciting time of growth, development, and learning, and the students are engrossed in various topics of study - including dinosaurs, astronauts, biology, and San Diego. In encouraging leadership skills, a Star Student is chosen each week to be the leader of the class. The child illustrates an All About Me poster and presents it to the class, which gives the children an opportunity to learn more about each other and helps to personalize the program. Simultaneously with all of this, students attend PE & Spanish class daily, as well as art, music, drama, library and technology on a weekly basis. The following information provides a “snapshot” in to the First Grade course overview during the autumn months:
Reading & Language Arts: Let’s Read; Animals; Things that Go
Mathematics: Computation; Time; Identifying patterns; Graphs; Even & odd numbers; Ordinal position; Polygons; Fractions
Science: Kinds of Living Things – differences in plants; differences in body coverings; animal adaptations; grouping animals; growth & change; life cycles
Social Studies: People Everywhere – Rights & individual responsibilities; varied backgrounds of American citizens
Character Education: Friendship; Responsibility, Courage
Honing the Basic Skills, Achieving High Levels of Fluency, and Gaining Confidence
The goal of Second Grade is to develop academic confidence within each student in each subject area. Reading skills soar, as comprehension supersedes basic fluency. Writing skills develop to remarkably sophisticated levels, with two-to-three page research reports produced in the spring.Competency in basic mathematics skills are honed and enhanced. All students achieve beyond grade-level expectations with beginning multiplication and division while enrichment fun maintains interest and enthusiasm. In the winter, students enjoy a special interdisciplinary unit on fairy tales and castles. As they read traditional versions of fairy tales from various cultures, castle architecture and history are studied, castles are drawn and models are built with blocks. This unit culminates with each student writing their own original fairy tale and presenting it to the class dressed in the tale's theme. Usually, the 2nd class play is a fair tale, as well. Simultaneously with all of this, students attend PE & Spanish class daily, as well as art, music, drama, library and technology on a weekly basis. The following information provides a “snapshot” in to the Second Grade course overview during the winter months:
Reading: Fairy tales; Fantasy; Historical fiction; Making connections
Language Arts: the writing process; descriptive writing; proofreading; grammar & mechanics; Letter writing
Mathematics: Two-digit addition & subtraction; fractions; introduction to multiplication
Science: Energy & Motion; Rollercoasters
Social Studies: Families; Holidays & Traditions Around the World
Drama & Field Trips: Second Grade Play
Computers & Library: Touch-typing techniques
Character Education: Courage, Respect
Becoming More Competent Scholars and Responsible Citizens
Third Grade students work year-round on what will ultimately be a personalized bound book of their own work at year's end. The collection includes well-developed creative writing, poetry, essays, reports, selected works from classmates, special memories, and photographs. This becomes a special keepsake that highlights the important accomplishments and memories of Third Grade. "Literature Circles" occur throughout the year, as well. Students are assigned certain jobs while reading (such as discussion director), each responsible for "teaching" the other students in their circle, all the while helping to improve reading comprehension and writing skills, as well as promote responsibility and accountability. Social studies and science become more important, as breadth of knowledge, higher level thinking about complex subject matter, and content comprehension are emphasized. Native American culture, the rain forest, and force are examples of challenging topics. An overnight at Indian Hills Camp is a highlight of several valuable field trips. The students sleep in teepees, learn about the Kumeyaay and the use of natural resources and the land. They play cooperative games of Native American origin, take a night hike, pound Yucca into rope, and enjoy legends told by a mountain man around the campfire. Simultaneously with all of this, students attend PE & Spanish class daily, as well as art, music, drama, library and technology on a weekly basis. Following is a snapshot of the 3rd grade’s first quarter curriculum:
Reading: Class novel – Because of Winn-Dixie; dictionary skills & vocabulary
Language Arts: types of sentences; writing process; ending punctuation; complete sentences; subject/predicate; writing for fluency; journals; creative writing; paragraph writing; nouns (singular & plural; common & proper); commas; similes/metaphors
Mathematics: mental computation; multiples; even/odd #s; subtraction with re-grouping; graphing; addition review; time/elapsed time; making change; measurement; radius/diameter; fractions; multiplication; time zones; map scale; logic
Science: Roles of living things – food chain mobile; needs of living things
Social Studies: Communities – geography & map skills; reading graphs; compass skills
Spelling: spelling of long & short vowel sounds; cursive – lower case letters; manuscript maintenance
Computers & Library: Touch-typing techniques
Going Beyond and Reaching Out
Children are challenged to succeed at accelerated levels in all areas of language arts and mathematics in fourth grade. Additionally, students participate in a public speaking program designed to teach them how to communicate more comfortably and confidently in front of an audience, educating them in proper public speaking techniques, and strengthening their listening, attention-holding, and articulation skills. Many of the field trips and activities complement the year’s study of California history. In the fall, students visit a mission. Upon their return, they write mission reports and plan, design, and build mission models in cooperative groups. In the spring, students and parent chaperones travel north to relive the exciting events of the California Gold Rush and tour the state capitol in Sacramento or visit San Francisco. In December, each student chooses a state, researches it in the computer lab and library, and writes a comprehensive report for the big State Fair held each May, presenting information unique to their state to other WWS students, their friends, and parents upon completion. Science topics include rock formations and the systems of the human body. Teachers ensure that hands-on experiences reinforce the complex subject matter. Simultaneously with all of this, students attend PE & Spanish class daily, as well as art, music, drama, library and technology on a weekly basis. The following information provides a “snapshot” in to the Fourth Grade course overview during the second quarter:
Literature: Read aloud; In-class novels; SRA; (2) book projects
Composition: Novel essays; California mission report; poetry; essential questions
Grammar: sentences; parts of speech; paragraphs; spelling
Math: multiplication; division; story problems
Science: Rocks & Minerals; volcanoes; experiments; earthquakes
Geography/Social Studies: California Ranchos; Gold Rush; Railroads; Statehood; 49ers
Computers & Library: Touch-typing techniques
Practicing Leadership Skills
Powerful literature units are integrated with the study of American History in fifth grade. It's one thing to learn the facts about our nation and begin to understand big ideas like democracy and equality, but it's even better to experience them with the characters of great books, such as Johnny Tremain. Challenging mathematics lessons reinforce the basic skills of math, yet expand each student's math awareness and problem solving expertise. In science, fifth graders take an in-depth look at the oceans and what lives in them, visiting the tide pools and presenting group reports on marine ecosystems. Fifth Grade students learn leadership skills through their daily opportunities to lead. They learn to share the vision of the school, strive to make a difference, help each other, use good judgment, and perform small but effective acts of selflessness. For our weekly campus Flag Ceremony, they raise the flag, lead the flag salute, and provide announcements to students and parents. They are also involved in community service projects throughout the year. In the spring, they hike to the top of a mountain to reinforce how character traits such as perseverance and self-discipline help us reach our goals. Most importantly though fifth graders are being prepared throughout the year both academically and socially for the transition to Middle School. Simultaneously with all of this, students attend PE & Spanish class daily, as well as art, music, drama, library and technology on a weekly basis. The following information provides a “snapshot” in to the Fifth Grade course overview during the second quarter:
Literature: Novel – Bud not Buddy; book projects: Biography/ Autobiography
Composition: sentence & paragraph formation & expansion; creative writing; five-paragraph essay; expository writing
Grammar: Eight parts of speech; mechanics
Math: basic facts; number theory; concepts; operations with whole numbers, exponents, rational numbers and roots
Science: Earth science; weather
Social Studies: Colonial times; world expansion; birth of American slavery; Star of India
Computers & Library: Touch-typing techniques
An environment that encourages optimum academic progress must also promote high standards of character and behavior. Warren-Walker School's administration, faculty, and staff desire to foster a respect for others and a sense of responsibility in each of our students. To achieve these goals, we have carefully crafted our Character and Leadership Program, using input from experts, respected colleagues, and parents.
Each month we focus on one of our core values or a theme:
September: Friendship/Building a Caring Community
March: Good Judgment
Students are helped to develop these personal qualities through special lessons and assignments with guidance, daily experience, and discipline – and to demonstrate them in their daily lives.
Unique to Warren-Walker Schools are the many enrichment programs taught by highly qualified dedicated, full time teaching professionals. The goals of these programs are to expand the classroom learning experience, integrate interdisciplinary opportunities, and develop a well-rounded foundation of skills in our students.
Understanding the importance of learning Spanish in Southern California, teaching begins in kindergarten and is taught daily. Through direct instruction, dialogue, repetition, recitation, art, play, and song, students learn basic vocabulary, common phrases, and short dialogues leading to a very strong foundation when entering our Middle School. Most of our middle school students test into Spanish III or IV when entering high school, and the facility to learn a second language has led many to try a third.
Knowing the importance of daily exercise and physical activity for our students, Physical Education is taught daily beginning in Kindergarten. Wellness and yoga instruction enhances the physical education program through weekly sessions starting in prekindergarten. Developing healthy habits and good lifestyle choices is key to every student's success, and the Lower Schools' PE & Wellness program is lively and interactive, with an emphasis on cooperative play, not competition.
Formal art instruction begins in Kindergarten, although classroom art is readily taught in prekindergarten and junior kindergarten. The focus of study in the beginning is on the basic elements of art - line, shape, color, texture, form, space, and value. Students are taught to look at things from an artist's perspective, and work on drawing skills. The principles of design become an emphasis, as well. The students learn how balance, emphasis, pattern, rhythm, proportion, unity, and variety are used in a work of art, experimenting with them in various projects. "Art with the Masters" is a favorite topic, used to emphasize important aspects of art and art history. "Careers in Art" is another area of instruction, and students are taught a variety of skills including graphic design and cartooning. The topics are re-taught each year at higher levels with projects of increased complexity.
Beginning in Prekindergarten, students have regular music classes and drama for an extended period leading to a production at each grade level involving singing, dancing, and role-playing in full costume. On performance day, each class play is performed twice, once for students and faculty, and again for family and friends. In Middle School, students will each play an instrument in our concert band. Their knowledge of music gained at the Lower School makes it possible for these students to participate in a concert by December of their sixth grade year.
Instruction in computer and library skills begins in prekindergarten through our strong Information Literacy and Technology Curriculum. In this "age of information," students must learn how to access resources efficiently and effectively. The Information Literacy & Technology teacher assists our core curriculum teachers in helping students find the information needed to complete projects and write well-developed reports. Wonderful literature is shared with the children, from all genres, which is available in the classrooms, as well as the libraries. In Library, students learn about library cataloging, library etiquette, and efficient use of the school library and online catalogs. In Computer classes, students are taught about online safety, digital footprints and citizenship, typing skills, Google search skills, Google applications and a variety of other online tools introduced via the grade level's core curriculum. Each year in the Computers and Library classes, tiered skills are taught for a continuing level of understanding. All of this combines to help students create quality, in-depth research projects, written essay units, and digital projects such as slideshows, digital media/graphics, and coding concept. Even our youngest students star with basic concepts of coding, problem solving, and clear instruction with the utilization of "Code-a-pillars", "Dot & Dash", and other hands-on activities.
Interested in learning more? Please call 619-223-3663 or simply click the button below to have a member of our Admissions Team contact you!