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LEARNING CYCLE III
(3rd , 4th and 5th grades)

1 - French Language and Literature :
The study of French is present in every classroom activity. Poetry, short stories, and novels are part of a wide-based and comprehensive approach to the teaching of Language Arts.

Reading and comprehensive skills are refined as the students progress through these grades.
The mastery of the French language will be deepened through the analysis of literary texts. Students will understand gender and number agreements, the relations between subject and verb, the use of different verbal tenses.

They will work on syntaxes: nouns, pronouns, connecting words etc.
There is an emphasis on all aspects of grammar, spelling, and punctuation, with the students practicing these skills through creative writing.

2 - History and Geography:
The history and geography program integrates French and American curriculums. Students start to understand that various groups have influenced different historical events; and also political, social and cultural evolution. The main historical periods are studied from prehistory to the present. French history along with American and world history will be covered in chronological order. Students will be initiated into investigating historical events and figures using different sources, analyzing simple historical documents and making summaries, which help improve their writing skills.

In geography, the diversity of the physical world will be studied. Landscape reading and cartographic representation will be reinforced. Students will examine the way people transform the environment. The program covers the world with its different climatic zones and geographic relief before focusing on Europe, France, and the United States. More emphasis will be placed on active methods: image analysis and production, drawing, maps, charts etc.

3 - Mathematics:
Mathematics teaching is centered on problem solving. The curriculum which integrates parts of Oregon curriculum, covers :
Whole natural numbers: reading, writing, ordering and rounding.
Simple fractions, decimal numbers and percentages,
Multiplication and division techniques with whole and decimal numbers at the end of the cycle;
Mental calculation,
In geometry students improve their perception of space and magnitude. They will study:
  Maps and plans to grasp the notion of scale;
  The use of instruments such as rulers, squares, compasses, protractors etc.;
  The use of different techniques : folding, tracing, graph paper;
  Plane figures : triangle, square, rectangle, circle, rhombus etc..
  Solids : cube, parallelepiped, pyramid etc.
  Enlargement and reduction techniques ;
  In measurement the notion of magnitude is explored with length, weight, volume, duration, areas, angles etc.
  Statistics and probability are also covered.

4 - Inquiry sciences and technology:
In science and technology, we encourage students to develop logical thinking through a scientific approach. They will participate in experiments, research technical solutions, use directed and guided observation of phenomena, analyze documents, survey and go on field trips.

Each student will have their science notebook where they record all their observations and experiments. That notebook will be kept all through the cycle to ensure learning continuity. Six major themes are covered by the curriculum:
  The matter,
  Unity and diversity of the living world,
  Environmental education,

  The human body and health education,
  Energy, earth and space
Technology applied to different fields: study of simple machines, information technology, building and programming robots.

6 - Physical Education:
Students develop the abilities and resources necessary for their main motor skills : movements, equilibrium, handling of different objects. They learn to value their efforts and progress.
They understand the relationship between competition and cooperation, the necessity to respect the rules and how to exercise their responsibilities. The following activities are practiced :
  timed performances through athletic activities,
  adjustment to different environments : orientation, climbing, roll and slide etc,
  Individual or team sports: soccer, tennis, badminton, and collective game etc.
  Performing artistic, esthetic or expressive activities: artistic or rhythmic gymnastics, circus activities,

5 - Visual Arts and Music:
The main objective is to enrich students' sensitivity and expressive abilities. Creative work, analysis of some artistic masterpieces and use of artistic techniques will be developed. Students will work with drawing as a plastic component. They will learn about characteristics and spatial organization of volumes, the different categories of images and their production process, the perception of the environment and its representation. They discover different supports, instruments, techniques and gestures. Drawing is a regular and personal skill. Artistic exhibitions are used to enhance the value of their works.
In music, students will continue to exercise their voices and to develop their listening skills through vocal games, songs in canon in small groups or in a choral. They will go beyond their familiar musical milieu to explore other types of music. Rhythmic instruments are used.
The music teacher will encourage students to participate in the school choral.
Besides visual arts and music, other domains will be studied (theater games, dancing, architecture..)

7 - Character Education:
Students will learn to control their reactions, and to realize their role within the group. Every week, half an hour will be devoted to an organized debate about class life, the school, and the community to reinforce democratic citizenship and the French and American core values. Class elections are held regularly to appoint officers for the class council.

8 - Standardized Testing:
PFS participates in the Northwest Evaluation Association (NWEA) standardized testing program. NWEA tests are given to students in the third through fifth grades during the fall and spring terms. Additionally, Casimir Tests, administered by the French Ministry of Education, are given in the third grade in the fall.
Each student's test scores will be sent home. Parents may schedule appointments to review test results with the teacher and the Head of School. Parents may request other types of tests, such as academic or psychological testing, from their local public school district.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
   
© September 2005, ®French American School of the Pacific Northwest dba
The Portland French School, 6318 SW Corbett Av, Portland Oregon 97239  Tel: 503-452-4160     Fax: 503-452-3890