Prepared Mind Pillar

The Athlos Academic Program

The Prepared Mind Pillar at Athlos Academy of Jefferson Parish is centered on academic programs that will prime students with the knowledge and critical thinking skills they need to excel.

Our teachers use instructional strategies that promote curiosity, collaboration, and a culture of positivity. We believe having a Prepared Mind is as much about learning how to learn and succeed as it is about academic knowledge.

Subject Areas

The curriculum provides opportunities for students to construct meaningful connections and deeper understanding of core content.

Athlos Academy uses EL Education’s language arts curriculum, a comprehensive, standards-based core literacy program that engages teachers and students through compelling, real-world content and builds equitable and inclusive learning opportunities for all students. It supports all learners by including strategies for students not meeting grade-level standards, extensions for students ready for more challenge, and built-in supports for English language learners. Each grade level includes four modules, which span a full school year. The four modules allow students to build important content knowledge based on a compelling topic related to science, social studies, or literature. Each module uses rich, authentic texts throughout.

In addition, to build foundational reading skills, Athlos Academy utilizes the EL Education K-2 Skills Block curriculum, which is a structured phonics approach, grounded in the Phase Theory of Dr. Linnea Ehri, which describes behaviors related to the types of letter-sound connections students are able to make as they learn to read and write.

The Wit & Wisdom program includes opportunities to apply reading, writing, speaking, and listening skills across a variety of tasks designed to grow students’ literacy skills over the course of the year, while providing options to differentiate for time where appropriate. The materials across the curriculum provide ample opportunities for students to build knowledge through content-rich, integrated reading, writing, speaking, listening, and language experiences. Students are supported in growing knowledge and vocabulary as they practice and apply skills in new texts and tasks. The materials include comprehensive instruction in writing, building research skills, and supporting students developing independent reading.

Regular benchmark assessments are used to track students’ progress towards grade-level standards, and intervention platforms and progress-monitoring tools are utilized on an individual basis to make sure all students are learning to read at grade level at a pace that is right for them.

Additional Literacy Resources:

What does it mean to have mathematical literacy? It means that a student understands the important role math has in the world and becomes a citizen who can make informed decisions. Developing mathematical literacy begins with building mathematical thinkers, which is at the core of the Bridges math program used at Athlos Academy.

Bridges promotes a deeper understanding of math concepts, proficiency, and fluency with computational skills, and the ability to reason and persevere through complex problems. Its approach blends direct instruction along with investigation and exploration using contexts and real-world connections. The program presents information supported by a progression of learning: kinesthetic materials, powerful visual images, and symbolic notation. Pressed to make connections within the strategies and models, students develop a rich cognitive framework for the structure of mathematics.

Additional Math Resources:

Science (all grades)

The science program at Athlos Academy of Jefferson Parish follows the three-dimensional Framework For K-12 Science Education (2012) laid out in the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS). This research-based framework shifts science instruction away from the memorization of facts to a hands-on approach where students learn to think critically, practice science and engineering practices, and make connections to other content areas and the real world. Teaching with the K-12 Framework helps us prepare Athlos students for 21st-century jobs and challenges by bringing together the three dimensions of science education: science and engineering practices, disciplinary core ideas, and crosscutting concepts.

Athlos Academy’s teachers use a variety of standards-based resources to teach science. These include lessons or units published by the National Science Teachers Association, National Geographic, NASA, or other scientific organizations; resources written and published by other science teachers across the U.S.; and science teaching kits, such as FOSS (Full Operation Science System™).

Whenever possible, teachers integrate the practice of Performance Character traits and connections to the Healthy Body pillar into science lessons.


Additional Science Resources:

Social Studies

The social studies program is founded on the idea that developing civic competence is the basis for full participation in a democratic society. Aligned to state standards, Athlos Academy uses units framed by central topics such as family, community, and citizenship. Deeper investigations into pivotal historic events and eras will cultivate historical inquiry skills and an appreciation for our past. Students will consistently make connections to modern day global issues.

Beginning with guiding questions and essential understandings, the units include activities to pique curiosity and spark excitement. Throughout the grade levels, there are intentional connections made to Performance Character traits rooted in the deeds and words of significant historical and modern figures.


Additional Social Studies Resources:

 

The fine arts curriculum includes visual arts and music exploration integrated thematically with other curriculum content. Students participate in two fine arts sessions each week.

In order to improve instruction and allow for data-driven decision-making, Athlos Academy of Jefferson Parish conducts interim assessments using assessments aligned with Louisiana’s academic standards. Athlos Academy utilizes STAR Reading™ and STAR Math™ assessments as the primary interim assessments. The results of these assessments are used to inform classroom instruction and identify supports needed for individual students.

STAR Reading™

STAR Reading™ is an assessment of reading comprehension and skills for independent
readers through grade 12. STAR Reading™ tracks development in five domains:

  • Word Knowledge and Skills
  • Comprehension Strategies and Constructing Meaning
  • Analyzing Literary Text
  • Understanding Author’s Craft
  • Analyzing Argument and Evaluating Text week

STAR Math™

STAR Math™ is an assessment of math achievement for students in grades 1–12. STAR Math™ tracks development in four domains:

  • Numbers and Operations
  • Algebra
  • Geometry and Measurement
  • Data Analysis, Statistics, and Probability

Grading Practices

Learn about standards-based grading and other avenues used at Athlos Academy to track and share student progress.

Summer Reading

Parents– Your student has a few summer reading assignments, which include reading two books from the provided list, writing short book summaries, (grades 3–7) and completing a project. Open for more details.

Student-led Conference Sign Up

Monday, March 25th is student-led conferences, which gives students the opportunity to reflect on their learning and show off their successes and areas of improvements.

Tips and Tricks for Helping Children Become Excited About Math

Athlos has compiled a few tips and tricks that can help both parents and children develop optimism and curiosity about the field of mathematics.

7 Tips on Helping Children Manage Test Anxiety

Testing in schools plays an important role in gauging how well students are performing academically. Though it’s common for students to not look forward to testing, some children loath it to the point of developing test anxiety, a form of stress that can hinder their learning.

Reading, Writing, Math: Developing Confident Problem Solvers

In the Athlos academics curriculum, when it comes to reading, writing, and math, it’s more than what students learn, but how they learn, comprehend, and apply their newfound knowledge to real-world problems.

Six Tips on Helping Your Student Develop a Growth Mindset Through Praise

Recent studies indicate that how parents and educators give praise or reward for a student’s success can have a direct effect on their mindset.

Student-Led Conferences: Helping Children Lead

At Athlos Academy, student-led conferences take the place of traditional parent-teacher conferences. These conferences help students take ownership of their learning as they honestly reflect on their progress, discuss their successes and challenges, and set goals for the future.

The Impact of Active, Student-Centered Classrooms on Student Success

At Athlos Academy of Jefferson Parish, we find it essential that classrooms are active and student-centered. Physical activity enhances the ability to learn, and students who are engaged are more excited to learn and more willing to take ownership of their learning.