Recognizing that God created every child with unique learning capabilities, Bethany Christian School utilizes skill-based grouping as an instructional model for the vital subjects of reading and math. This model entails assessing students and placing them in groups based on their achievement in these two central subjects while allowing students to be in an age-appropriate classroom with their grade level peers for all other subjects.
Why just reading and math for skill-based grouping?
Reading is considered a paramount skill necessary for a happy, productive and successful life. A child that is an excellent reader is a confident child, has a high level of self-esteem and is able to easily make the transition from learning to read to reading to learn.
Reading and analyzing texts helps your child to develop critical-thinking skills, such as observing, interpreting and evaluating. When these components are present, your child will begin to make inferences about what is being read and be able to summarize key ideas and details, thus requiring your child to think critically. As this process develops, your child is able to apply these skills to real world situations. A solid reading foundation will help your child read independently and comprehend almost any type of text.
Math teaches logic and order. You can expect a mathematical equation to have a predictable outcome, and precise steps must be followed in order to attain that result. The discipline of mind that children develop in math class carries over into everyday life. A widely accepted premise is that math provides a vehicle through which critical-thinking skills are put into practice and refined. One example of mathematical critical thinking is when students are required to explain how they arrived at a solution to a complex problem or to describe the ideas behind a formula or procedure. Math intersects with reading. Concepts in math, such as averages, hypothesis, mean, computation lends itself to an increase in understanding, enhances vocabulary and complements effective comprehension.
By meeting students where they are in reading and math allows students to be instructed and challenged at an appropriate level of their capabilities without overwhelming them. Learning becomes fun and the thrill of discovery spills into every other subject. This model has proven to be extremely effective for learners at all levels for well over a decade. One result of our distinctive model is that Bethany Christian School students consistently exceed state and national norms on standardized tests. Furthermore, students have consistently demonstrated they are at high school level math while still in middle school.
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