Curriculum Night 2023

Curriculum Night 2023
Carol Piraino, Associate Head of School and Chief Academic Officer


Thank you to all of the parents who joined us for Curriculum Night last week. I hope that you found the sessions informative and that you have a greater understanding of how our academic program unfolds over the course of our students’ years at Hausner.

One of the wonderful things about being a TK-8 school is that our curriculum builds intentionally year over year. Our primary and secondary teachers confer and collaborate with one another frequently to ensure a thoughtful progression in depth and complexity of instruction over time. Parents who attended heard from teachers who teach different grade levels about how the curriculum grows and develops in each curricular area over the course of our students’ 9-10 years here.

For example, our general studies/humanities teachers described how the foundational work done in kindergarten where students express their ideas in pictures and minimal words leads to more sophisticated paragraph writing in 3rd grade where students organize their thoughts into longer pieces complete with transitional words and phrases. From there, they are introduced to five-paragraph essays in 4th grade, and in 5th grade are challenged to “show not tell” in their writing,

When they get to upper school most of their writing is thesis-driven and focuses on argumentation. Here are some of the significant milestones the teachers noted:

  • Fifth grade introduces the research-based argument essay
  • Sixth through eighth grades develop and refine important skills: 
    • Crafting a strong thesis statement
    • Focusing and organizing ideas
    • Developing arguments with evidence and logical explanations
    • Creating effective introductions and conclusions

And here are some of the writing prompts the students address:

  • Fifth Grade: What was Thomas Jefferson’s relationship with the concept and practice of slavery in the United States?
  • Sixth Grade: Explain how and why Gilgamesh’s views on human mortality change as a result of his experiences in Gilgamesh the Hero. 
  • Seventh Grade: Explain how the geographical features of ancient Greece affected its political, social, and economic development. 
  • Eighth Grade: Explain how the opening passage of the Declaration of Independence reflects Enlightenment ideas about the role and purpose of government.

During curriculum night, our science, math, Hebrew, and Jewish studies team similarly explained how the content develops over the 9-10 years students attend Hausner. Teachers also shared how our social-emotional learning program evolves as well.
If you have any feedback about the evening or any questions, please feel free to reach out to me, Carol Piraino, at cpiraino@hausnerschool.org.