Hampstead Hill Academy is committed to providing all students with an academically rigorous and engaging education that meets each child’s individual needs and pushes him/her to excel.
Direct Instruction (DI)
In grades Pre-k-5, the Direct Instruction program is utilized as the primary reading, language and spelling curriculum. Direct Instruction is a research-based, data-driven model that emphasizes teaching concepts to mastery. Students are placed in instructional groups based on their individual needs. All skills and concepts are explicitly taught in a highly-structured learning environment and practiced until students are capable of performing the tasks independently. This program has proven to be successful with all learners, including students with special needs and high performing students. We are proud to share that over 95% our students are placed in groups on or significantly above grade-level. To learn more about Direct Instruction, read “Clear Teaching: With Direct Instruction, Siegfried Englemann Discovered a Better Way of Teaching” by Shepard Barbash.
In PreK, Engage NY is the primary program used for math. This program is directly connected to the Math Common Core State Standards. In K-3, Singapore Math is the primary math program. Please note that the kindergarten Singapore program is referred to as Early Birds. Singapore Math is based on the highly successful instructional practices in Singapore. This program balances both creative thinking and problem solving with basic fundamental drills. At its core, the program seeks to provide a solid foundation in number sense, and area which research has proven to be most important in understanding how to build complex mathematical concepts. In 4th and 5th grade, Eureka Math is used, which directly aligns to the Grade 4 and Grade 5 Math Common Core State Standards. This program also balances both creative thinking and problem solving with basic fundamental drills. With a focus on word problems, Eureka will help to prepare students for the rigor of middle school math.
Middle School Grades
The goal of HHA’s middle school curriculum is to best prepare our students for high school and beyond. In English Language Arts, writing is an essential skill and practiced frequently using Springboard Curriculum. Students are exposed to a variety of writing styles including personal narratives, argumentative essays, literary responses and expository writing. For Social Studies, History Alive! is our curriculum for Ancient Civilizations (Grade 6) and US History (Grades 7 and 8). In addition, all middle school students engage in a rigorous, project – based learning unit around National History Day.
In math, Eureka is used in all grades. Again, our goal is to prepare students for success in high school. In science, students cover a range of life, earth and physical science concepts using the IQWST Curriculum.
Science/Social Studies/Food for Life
In every grade-level, students have opportunities to learn about the world around them in science class. PreK-2 use Core Knowledge, and grades 3 – 5 use FOSS Next Generation Science. Students learn through hands-on experiments and projects.
At the elementary level, students also engage in social studies. Grades PreK-2 use Core Knowledge and grades 3-5 use Social Studies Alive!. This program leads right into the middle school History Alive! program.
In Food for Life, students learn about healthy eating and have an opportunity to taste new fruits, vegetable and dishes. Learning about the HHA garden is also part of the Food for Life curriculum. The garden allows the students hands-on opportunities to learn both about plant biology and nutrition.
Enrichment classes at HHA enhance the core curricular studies in the classroom through Art, Physical Education, Drama, Nature Exploration, Health and Wellness/Food for Life, Library, Computer Science/Technology Exploration, and World Language Exploration. Instrumental Music is provided through elective small group instruction with a part-time staff member. Music and movement is also provided through a part-time staff member who sees PreK-2 for about 25 minutes each week. HHA knows that a robust, holistic education must include an exploration of art, culture, language, literature, a passion for the environment, a comprehensive view of health and wellness and social and emotional learning. Enrichment classes are taught in seven-day phases and every student has a perspective period each day.