CTA Curriculum at Carlson

  • CTA Math Overview

    Chandler Traditional Academies (CTA) have switched from Saxon to My Math, a McGraw Hill curriculum as Saxon is being retired from publication. My Math along with supplementary materils are being used in conjunction with Enhanced Math Practices as its basis for instruction for grades K-4. Grades 5-6 have been using McGraw Hill amd Glencoe Math for many years now to provide students a conceptual understanding of mathematical practices. CUSD has a well-articulated curriculum that challenges students to learn increasingly more sophisticated mathematical ideas as they progress through their studies, while continuously reviewing already learned concepts in order to attain mastery. All grades (K-6) are taught math standards that are one grade level above using advanced math curriculum.

    CTA Reading Overview

    Download Spalding Behind the Method
    Download Why Spalding Works

    CTA schools use the Spalding Method as the basis for all instruction in literacy. Research on learning to read tells us that reading is a complex process. Research also tells us that children of all ages need systematic and explicit instruction in the core elements and processes of reading to help them develop and use their skills efficiently and accurately.

    The Spalding Method teaches precise speech, legible handwriting, correct spelling, fluent accurate reading and involvement of learning and thinking processes to understand what has been read. Reading instruction is divided into three strands: literary appreciation, text structure, and comprehension—both listening and reading.

    The students use the Houghton Mifflin Journey's Program as a foundation for reading instruction and literature. In addition, quality children’s literature at a variety of reading levels is used in the classroom for instruction. Accelerated Reader, a self-paced computerized program for checking comprehension, is also available once children are able to read on their on at approximately an end of first grade level.

    CTA Writing Overview

    At all grade levels, students are instructed in both the Writing Process and the Components of Writing. The Spalding Method forms the core of the CTA Writing program. The children are provided with quality literature in their reading lessons to serve as good models for developing strong quality writing. The staff ensures that all students have explicit, sequential, and cumulative teaching of the structures of language (grammar) and daily opportunity to practice what they have learned by writing sentences and compositions.

    Accelerated Reader

    Click here to go to the AR BookFinder website. It will tell you the approximate reading level for the book you have selected.

    Click Here for a website that allows you access to your student’s comprehension level and his progress towards meeting his AR goal.

    Accelerated Reader, or AR, is a program that has been commercially developed to help track and guide student reading and understanding. Educators know that to become an excellent reader, one has to really read. AR is a computerized program in use at many CUSD schools including ours. Essentially, students read a book at their own independent reading level. They take a test on computer answering questions about the book.

    It is important to note that the goal in AR is to achieve and maintain an average of 90% or better on quizzes. Averaging 85-- 90% indicates that the student understands the key points of the book, and it motivates the student to read more. Research has shown that 30-minutes of daily reading practice and an average of 90% and higher on AR quizzes produces the most significant gains in reading achievement.

    On the CTA campuses, students in grades 1—6 STAR test to find their optimal independent reading level. Teachers then establish personal reading goals for the students. Students then work to accomplish a reading goal that is designed to meet their educational needs. The children take a comprehension test on the books they read. This tells us if they are reading “just right” books and can understand what they read.

    On the CTA quarterly report card for grades 1—6, you will find your child’s AR goal and his progress towards that goal in percentage terms. In addition, the student’s comprehension mastery will also be reported as a percentage. Above are some websites that you can use to help your child monitor progress towards her reading goal and her level of mastery.