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Trinity Lutheran School - Preschool - 8th Grade Curriculum

Trinity Lutheran School 

"Focused on Excellence ~ Centered in Christ"

​​​Wahiawa, Hawaii -

     Sharing the Love of Jesus as Savior, Teacher, and Friend is not just taught during religion class at Trinity, but rather
that is the driving motivation of the school. Each morning preschool through eighth grade unite at the school flag pole to
pledge both to the country and to the Christian faith. With a large number of military students, this unique Trinity tradition
unites the school in both its desire to begin the day with worship and to honor patriotism to the United States. The Flag pole
time continues with school wide announcements that generally include some sort of service opportunity from donating to St.
Stephens food pantry to making a shoebox full of gifts to send to other parts of the world, or even to march in local parades
to help advertise our school. To close, the entire student body sings to all those celebrating birthdays and a student offers a
prayer.

 
     Educational excellence may come at the end of Trinity’s mission statement, but the school prides its reputation on
excelling in the educating of children. As students return to their classrooms, daily devotions with Bible readings are read.
Often times this leads to wonderful faith discussions. It is followed by classroom prayer requests and praises that vary from
very personal family issues all the way to world peace matters. The schools’ religion curriculum is published by Concordia
Publishing House which aligns with all of the school’s Lutheran beliefs. The One In Christ curriculum leads students through
over 200 Bible stories from preschool through 8th grade. Many students are at Trinity for a Christian education and this need
is meet every day.


     Some families at Trinity are not as interested in a Christian education, but rather a comprehensive private school education.

This need is also met. Trinity’s standardized test scores illustrate math is one of the strongest subject areas. Trinity uses the Saxon math series from Kindergarten to 8th grade. Saxon provides students with long-term mastery as they practice new skills daily and revisit previous lessons in each assignment. It supplies a solid foundation of skills as well as offers many problem solving scenarios for the children to apply what they’ve learned.


     Language Arts are becoming increasingly more necessary for success in secondary and higher education. Trinity does not simply teach the how of writing, but also the why of writing through the Shurley English curriculum. With several new students entering each year due to the change of military jobs in this community, this curriculum is very repetitive and able to be  mastered by both returning and new students. Students at Trinity love to read. This love is fostered by the teachers regularly reading aloud to them, and choosing student selections that are age appropriate and engaging. Teachers align novels or  excerpts that match both their themes being taught and their students’ interest and abilities. To round out the language arts, the vital skills of speaking, listening, and viewing are taught daily. Evidence of growth is seen in student led chapels, weekly classroom sharing, holiday programs, and the finale of our year, May Day.

     Living in Hawaii provides unique opportunities in both science and social studies subject areas. Not only is
Hawaiiana emphasized in the curriculum in both 4th and 7th grade, it is present in nearly all of the field trips taken by each
grade. In social studies, our Hawaii setting opens doors for discussions from geography to social injustice and from
immigration to being a part of a community. Trinity’s social studies curriculum gives a strong emphasis on United States
history as well as on applying history to current events surrounding us today. 
In science, students are able to be outside investigating every week. They can do many activities with both plants and animals or conduct experiments outdoors that would be restricted if done indoors. Conservation is regularly emphasized. Investigation, data collection and analysis, and conclusion formulation are taught from preschool to 8th grade, and culminate in bi-annual science fairs by all classes.


     Problem solving opportunities, journaling, and investigations help students to show what they know. These activities help student to take what they’ve been taught and apply it on their own. Many teachers use rubrics to assess
important classroom projects. When students self-assess using rubrics, they are essentially checking off the skills that
they’ve achieved on a given assignment. When students are given the grading rubric ahead of time, they can see exactly
what is expected of them and work towards that as their goal.

     Trinity’s curriculum is logical and fluent from grade to grade. However, it is also very lengthy and not always user
friendly. Steps are being taken this year to develop a simple scope and sequence of each subject area. This will be school-
wide project involving all of the teachers. From the “to-be developed” scope and sequence, each teacher will be given their
curriculum in a check-list format which will be much more user friendly. Annually when the teachers review standardized
test results, they can revisit this scope and sequence as a whole to discuss improvements that can be made.