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Empowering Success: NVUSD Elementary's Approach to Reading, Writing, and Math


In our elementary schools, our focus is to provide instruction in an Ecosystem of Cariño where we provide rigorous, high-quality, and supportive instruction in reading, writing, and math. We want to make sure our students are not only learning, but also enjoying and connecting with what they're learning! 

How Do Teachers Teach?

Teachers follow the California State Standards. These serve as a roadmap for what students should know and be able to do. We've also identified some specific "must-learns" or priority standards. You'll find your students assessed on these "must-learns" on their progress reports.

To bring these topics to life, our teachers use a variety of teaching strategies:

Breaking Tasks into Small Chunks: Making lessons bite-sized and manageable

Connecting to Prior Knowledge: Relating new concepts to what students already know

Daily Planners and Schedules: Giving students a clear idea of what to expect

Graphic Organizers & Tools: Visual aids that simplify complex topics

Frontloading Vocabulary: Introducing key terms before diving deep

…and many more methods to make classes exciting!

There's a lot that goes on behind the scenes to make every class exciting and enriching!

What Programs Do Teachers Use?

The curriculum and programs used for  instruction in the classroom include:

Reading: Benchmark Phonics, Benchmark Advance, Imagine Language & Literacy and Accelerated Reader

Writing: Writing Revolution

Math: Bridges in Mathematics and Dreambox

Science: Discovery Science--reading and writing happen all day in elementary school! Our newly adopted science curriculum is full of rich scientific text and writing opportunities.

Our staff selected these programs to provide a solid foundation in reading, writing, and math.

Extra Help for Students:

We recognize that some students may need additional support. To identify students who may require additional support, teachers rely on:

Assessments: STAR early literacy, reading, and math test scores

Progress Reports: Students with a “1” in math or English language arts

When classroom interventions are not enough, teachers refer students to the intervention team. That team looks at what the teachers used in the classroom to support the student. They also look at the student assessment, progress reports, attendance, etc. Then they determine the appropriate intervention. That's where our "interventionists" come in. Since the start of the school year, these experts have provided support beyond the classroom using programs such as:

Reading: Benchmark Phonics Intervention, Heggerty: Phonemic Awareness, and Read 180

Math: Bridges Intervention and Math 180

TK and Kindergarten teachers also support our “interventionists.” Once their students go home, they work with small groups of 1st graders. And, we're thrilled to announce that our after-school intervention programs launched this week!

The intervention team will also recommend learning opportunities over winter and summer break. Keep an eye out for these opportunities on the website and in our family newsletter.

Intensive Interventions:

Some students need more intensive support. The intervention team may refer them for one-on-one Sylvan tutoring, special education evaluation, or a 504 evaluation. If a student qualifies for special education, they will receive interventions such as:

iXL (literacy and math) - iXL offers students the opportunity to practice discrete skills in both English Language Arts and mathematics in order to close the achievement gap with core instruction

Lead to Literacy - Following the science of reading, NVUSD has utilized the Lead to Literacy Grant to implement Orton Gillingham aligned interventions at all grade levels

TeachTown (literacy and math) - Students with the most intensive academic needs utilize the TeachTown curriculum for adapted lessons aligned with our core standards

Opportunities for Advanced Learners:

We give the CogAT assessment to all 3rd-grade students to assess their verbal, quantitative, and nonverbal reasoning skills. The results of this test help us identify students with advanced capabilities. Those who qualify can use the Renzulli Learning program. This program provides a personalized, project-based, learning environment. Classroom teachers also differentiate their instruction to meet the needs of advanced learners. Some examples of differentiated instruction include:

Providing opportunities for independent and group projects

Accelerated curriculum options

Other tailored learning experiences.

In short, at NVUSD elementary schools, we're using many ways to make sure all our students succeed in reading, writing, and math. We're committed to helping every child thrive!

  • 01 - Elementary Schools