Curriculum & Academics
Our literacy curriculum helps students to be avid readers and writers. Our curriculum, the Teachers College Units of Study in Reading and Writing, engages students using a workshop model. Children are given the opportunity to work independently as well as in collaborative partnerships or small groups, reading and writing both fiction and non-fiction texts. Authenticity drives instruction; we teach children how to effectively think about what they are reading, or as a writer, how to construct viable arguments and support their thinking. We fill our libraries with a variety of texts, appealing to the varied interests, cultural, and linguistic backgrounds of our students.
At PS 198, art instruction focuses on a variety of art styles, artists, and media. Students deepen their imagination and expressive skills through daily instruction. The elements of art and principles of design drive discussion, sharpen observational skills, and create original works of art across all grades. Art instruction develops aesthetic appreciation, and supports the development of critical thinking skills.
Math instruction is meant to engage students in tasks that require higher order thinking. We emphasize the use of authentic contexts as a way to learn and apply the use of mathematical models as thinking tools. Students construct mathematical arguments and communicate their thinking both verbally and in writing. We emphasize a growth mindset in math, encouraging process over a correct answer. To support student learning, we utilize a variety of resources such as Context for Learning, Go Math and Engage NY.
PS 198 uses the newest, state aligned science curriculum, Amplify. The Amplify Science program utilizes hands-on investigations in addition to scientific literacy activities to inspire students to think like scientists and engineers to solve real-world problems. In each Amplify unit, children work through authentic problems in order to find solutions that will foster a deeper understanding of the scientific concepts being taught.
Social Studies instruction often complements the development of our students’ literacy skills. We utilize the Passport to Social Studies curriculum, which integrates Common Core ELA Standards with the New York K-8 Social Studies Framework. Students often engage in research around historical events, making connections to their lives today. Students are challenged to think like historians to ask questions, and consider the many perspectives of the individuals and groups of people that have impacted our history over time.
Our Physical Education program improves muscular strength, flexibility, body composition and cardiovascular endurance. Physical education develops skills which allow enjoyable and rewarding participation in physical activities. We teach children to follow rules, established procedures, and be responsible for their own health-related fitness. Through the use of games and exercise, our PE program instills a strong sense of self-worth in children, so that they can become more confident, assertive, and independent. We utilize our large gym as well as outdoor yard space for daily PE classes in Pre-K-5th grade.
The elementary technology program provides an important foundation in creating digitally literate students. Our goal is that when students leave PS 198, they can find evaluate and present information, and have the confidence to use technology efficiently, independently and safely. In lower grades, computer instruction aligns with the development of their fine motor skills. Children learn how to manipulate the mouse and locate critical keys on a keyboard. As children become more comfortable navigating computers, they develop their keyboarding skills in an effort to become fluent touch typists. They also receive GSuite accounts where they learn how to effectively manage and organize their cloud based portfolio of activities.
Our music instruction empowers students with the tools to think critically about their own musical learning. The curriculum draws from Kodaly and Orff methodologies, using vocal folk repertoire from around the world, and focuses on cognitive and kinesthetic engagement in all activities. Students become fluent in the language of music through a strong focus on musical literacy in lower grades, showcased through vocal and classroom instrument performances. In upper grades, students practice the content they've learned as they develop skills in playing piano, recorder, and guitar.