In addition to the core curriculum, teachers in their specific areas of expertise such as physical education, art, library science, and music provide instruction unique to the individual grade levels
Music and Performing Arts
The Lower School music curriculum is designed to enhance students’ musical abilities and affinities. Through opportunities to sing, dance, listen to and play musical instruments, and study both historical and contemporary composers and musicians, students are encouraged to develop a lifelong appreciation for music, whether as a performer or as a member of an audience.
Students receive exposure in the performing arts and participate in performances held at the schoolʼs Gates Performing Arts Center. These experiences allow students the opportunity to recognize, develop, and appreciate their creative talents, discover a balance between their academic and artistic strengths, and holistically enhance their overall development. Students are involved in every aspect of a performance, from costume and set design, to rehearsing lines, songs, and dances together. The beneﬁts of this concentrated exposure to a thoroughly integrated curriculum involving combined ages, abilities, and grades are invaluable. Through the enthusiastic, collaborative efforts, and support of the music teacher, individual classroom teachers, families, and the community, Lower School performances provide spectacular entertainment for audiences throughout the year.
Physical and Health Education
Physical Education classes use the Village Campus ﬁelds and courts and Upper Campus athletic facilities, including the gym, wrestling room, tennis courts, and swimming pool to develop studentsʼ locomotor/motor skills, strength, eye/hand coordination, ﬂexibility and endurance. Additional activities, such as the Keiki Triathlon, provide students with opportunities to develop and achieve lifelong ﬁtness goals.
The health curriculum includes three speciﬁc units of instruction—nutrition, alcohol, tobacco, and other drugs, and family health and sexuality. While some of this curriculum currently is covered in a variety of ways in the classrooms, the physical education teacher addresses these speciﬁc units of health instruction in a developmentally appropriate manner. Parents are kept informed about the units of instruction and how these are implemented through newsletters or letters home.
The goal of the Lynn Taylor Library is to meet the information needs of its users by supporting the classroom curriculum and educating students to be ethical and efficient users of information. During the school year, the library is open from 7:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., Monday through Friday. Lower School classes visit the library once a week. During this time, information literacy lessons are offered, based on the American Association of School Librariansʼ Nine Information Literacy Standards for student learning. Students also have time to browse and borrow books and listen to quality literature.
The program proceeds through the study of the parts of books, audio-visual resources, and the online catalog classiﬁcation and arrangement. The program concludes with research strategies and reference resources, followed by hands-on use of these skills. Students then apply these skills in their classroom projects.
The goals of the library program are to foster a love of reading, to teach information literacy, and to encourage students to use the library and its materials to supplement and enrich their research in all areas of the curriculum. Books and materials from various genres and disciplines are introduced throughout the year.
The visual arts curriculum introduces students to a wide variety of concepts, techniques, and media. The program is designed to familiarize students with the language of visual expression and to help them discover, develop, and reﬁne their artistic skills. The elements of art (line, shape, form, color, value, texture, and space) and the principles of design (balance, movement, rhythm, contrast, emphasis, pattern, and unity) become tools for the creation of art in a variety of styles. Students gain visual literacy as they explore techniques in watercolor, colored pencils, acrylic paint, markers, ink, charcoal, chalk and oil pastel, print making, and ceramics to produce extraordinary artwork at each level. Students also examine and explore historical and cultural works of art to broaden their perspective of the world and to formulate ideas about the different ways art can be used as a powerful vehicle for documentation, change, and self-expression.
Our Hawaiian Studies program further enhances/enriches the social studies curriculum and is designed with a yearly thematic approach that scaffolds throughout the grades. Included in the classes are special speakers, field trips to experience the rich traditions of Hawai‘i, learning about and playing Makahiki games, and gathering to share an elaborate culminating project, our May Day performance, with family and friends each spring.