To support the continuum of learning, teachers at all levels use the Diocesan Guidelines, which emphasize Common Core, State, and Diocesan Standards, published texts, and teacher generated/ supplemental materials.
St. Joseph School is committed to educating the "Whole Child", preparing him/her with the skills to be successful in the 21st century, and a good and thoughtful citizen driven by faith and the example of Christ.
Our curriculum follows the Common Core Standards, National, and Diocesan guidelines and offers an integrated and critical thinking approach to subject matter. The following is a generalized overview of the scope of the subjects offered. Specifics for each grade level are explained by the teacher.
- Religious Education
Religious instruction will be an integral and continuing element of the educational experiences of students in all grades. The Religion program includes the study of Scripture, participation in the Liturgy with emphasis on the Mass and Sacraments, and the importance of personal prayer life. Preparation for the Sacraments of Reconciliation and Eucharist are part of our Second Grade curriculum. Parents are involved as active partners through workshops that are offered in celebration with the parish Religious Education Department.
The students participate and help plan liturgies, prayer services, and celebrations to increase their active participation in their faith life development. These are done both within the school community and in partnership with the larger parish community. Children and their families are expected to attend Mass on a regular basis in order to support this commitment and model enthusiasm for an active faith life.
Conflict Resolution and problem solving is also a part of the program designed to help children develop the skills to deal with others with respect and responsibility.
The faculty and staff have been through an extensive professional growth training to integrate “Tribes”, a co-operative learning process, into the daily routine with the students. This program helps build caring and supportive relationships, promotes positive behavior and high expectations and offers opportunities for meaningful participation. We, also, are using the “Caring School Community” Program with Grades TK-5 and the “Second Step” Program with Grades 6-8.
A majority of the faculty have attended a Discipline With Purpose workshop which assists them in teaching the students that “self-discipline” is a person’s ability to “wait” and be patient. While “waiting” a person can think and process how to act. Waiting is the master skill that helps people delay impulsive behavior. By delaying this rapid behavior, it provides time to make a deliberate choice about the actions that might be most appropriate for any given time
2. Family Life/Christian Sexuality
The Oakland Diocesan Catholic elementary school program in human sexuality is an integral part of the educational program planned for each student. The integration of Catholic values in human sexuality occurs as appropriate throughout the entire curriculum.
Maximizing the wholesome influences of the Catholic classroom requires an approach, which integrates the Catholic value system and moral convictions throughout the curriculum. The ultimate goal of our program is to provide children with an understanding of the nature and importance of human sexuality as faithful Christians. Each grade teaches family life during a different time of the school year and each teacher will notify parents before they start.
- Language Arts
The goal of the Language Arts program is to develop effective communicators. This means that all instruction will be with the intent to empower literate, fluent, and life-long readers and writers in all subject areas.
- Social Studies
The Social Studies program emphasizes the value of the diversity of our heritages. It is designed to promote knowledgeable and responsible citizenship. The Social Studies program includes the study of: People and Communities, California, the United States, Cultures of the World - ancient and modern, and the United States Constitution and Government.
The Mathematics program is designed to provide a meaningful understanding of facts and the application of processes. It includes Problem Solving, Estimation and Mental Arithmetic, Numbers and Operations, Geometry, Measurement, Relations and Functions, Probability and Statistics, and Logical Thinking. The program incorporates active learning centers and application to other areas of the curriculum.
The Science program is designed to develop in the students the skills necessary for observing, communicating, comparing, measuring, organizing, relating, inferring, and applying. The emphasis is on hands-on learning, which incorporates lab experiences and creative challenges. It encompasses life, physical, and earth sciences.
As part of the Environmental Science curriculum, Fifth and Eighth Grade will attend Caritas Camp either in the fall or spring. Caritas is a five-day outdoor education camp experience that incorporates religion and science education. An extra fee for Caritas is charged to parents during the Fifth and Eighth Grade year. A limited number of scholarships are available to families in financial need. All students are required to attend camp and will be held accountable for the curriculum covered during this outdoor education experience.
7. Physical Education
The Physical Education program provides the students with the opportunity to acquire and develop physical skills, confidence, teamwork, and physical and mental well-being. Motor development, eye-hand coordination, and physical fitness are emphasized, as well as seasonal sports, first aid, health, and drug awareness.
- Technology Program
The goal of the Technology program is to produce young citizens who are competitive and productive in today’s global market. By integrating the current curriculum with skills and information that are based on and utilize computer technology, students learn to apply technology skills to real life situations, preparing them with 21st century skills.
Skills for Success - Students will be introduced to the following:
A. Accessing and Analyzing Information
・knowing where the information is
・knowing how to retrieve necessary information
・knowing how to become an independent learner/researcher
・no longer just knowing how to write, but achieve progressively successful communication skills
・knowing how to get an idea across quickly and accurately to a variety of audiences
Students learn to access what they need, put it together, and make a presentation that is:
・easily understood by the intended audience
The Spanish program is designed to develop conversational, written, and verbal skills, as well as awareness and appreciation for the Spanish speaking cultures. Eighth Grade graduates can advance to second year Spanish in high school based on successful completion on the High School Entrance Exam.
The objective of the Music program is to increase sensitivity to music as an art through the understanding of its elements. The program encompasses listening, reacting, singing, performing on instruments, playing games, and dancing. Program participation is required for all students in Grades TK-5.
The objective of the Art program is to develop and encourage creative expression. We explore different media and introduce appreciation for different artists and art forms. Art is also integrated across the curriculum.
Students in Grades 4-8 may audition for membership in the St. Joseph Catholic School Children’s Choir. Students are responsible for all work missed in their regular classrooms during that period. The choir will perform at school liturgies, morning assemblies, and occasional parish Masses and community functions.