The Beginning of Lifelong Learning

Elementary school at SAS is a place where the foundation of learning takes hold, and where we have the rewarding job of fostering and challenging students to maintain their curiosity and creativity while extending their self-confidence and self-advocacy.

A daily schedule of core subjects in reading language arts, mathematics, world languages, science, and social studies is punctuated by specialist classes in art, music, physical education, swimming, technology, and library use. Experiential learning outside the classroom through field trips and community service inspires students and enriches the curriculum.

From the earliest grades, SAS students are active learners; students learn to analyze and question across subject areas, and learn to express themselves in writing, presentations, and discussions. They understand where they are in their learning journey, what their learning targets are, and what it will take for them to reach the next steps. Our students take risks and learn from failure in a community of acceptance, preparing them to meet and surmount high academic standards.

We recognize the importance of friendships and working cooperatively, and foster the development of skills that contribute to students’ personal and academic success. Social-emotional programs are integrated into the culture and program of each grade level and SAS counselors are matched with students for three-year cycles to provide personal support and facilitate building emotional competencies.


Learn More About Our Chinese Immersion Program

In today’s interconnected world, we know it is more important than ever for our children to better understand the world around them. Singapore American School is proud to launch our Chinese language and culture immersion program, where students will work toward fluency while building the foundation for continued academic success.

A new learning Experience

Explore Our Chinese Immersion Program

Personal and Academic Success

1:1

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iPad program to enhance classroom learning

90+

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after-school activities for students to choose from

Daily

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Chinese or Spanish language classes

Annual

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visits by authors, illustrators, and musicians come to SAS to offer students a unique perspective

Tailored for students

Testimonial

Upon learning of our move to Singapore, we began looking into school options for our elementary, middle, and high school children. After significant research, we determined Singapore American School was ideal based on academics, course offerings, facilities, staff, and faculty. Two years later, we can say without hesitation that SAS has exceeded every expectation.

Napierski Family

Subjects and Curriculum

Our academic program supports the individual needs of our students and includes studies in the core curricular areas of reading, writing, math, science, and social science, as well as specialist areas of art, music, physical education (PE), world language, and technology. In addition to these academic classes, students have access to support services through Gifted and Talented Education (GATE), enrichment, academic support, English Language Learners (ELL), and counseling.

Kindergarten

Kindergarten Subjects and Curriculum

SUBJECT

CURRICULUM OVERVIEW

Reading and Language Arts

We Are Readers, emergent story books and shared texts, Readers Use Super Powers, Reading Teachers, Learning About Ourselves and Our World, Characters, Launching the Writing Workshop, Writing For Readers, How To, Informational Books, and persuasive writing.

Mathematics

One to five, comparing and ordering zero to ten, six to ten, numbers to 100, understanding addition, understanding subtraction, composing and decomposing numbers to ten, composing numbers eleven to 19, measurement, sorting, classifying, counting, and categorizing data, identifying and describing shapes, position and location of shapes, analyzing, comparing, and composing shapes.

Science

Light and sound, wood and paper, worms, goldfish and guppies, and snails.

Social Studies

My Family and Me, Holidays and Celebrations.

World Language

Spanish
Level 1: Todo Sobre Mi, Mi Familia, Mi Casa Y Mi Comunidad, Mi Escuela Y Mis Amigos, Mis Vacaciones.
Level 2: Picasso, Paella, Viaje a Barcelona, Futbol.

Mandarin
Level 1: All About Me, My Family and Me, What I Do With My Friends, What I Do In School.
Level 2: More About Me, More About Family, Home Sweet Home, How I Get Around.
Level 3: My School, Let's Eat, My Community, Travel.
Level 4: Mooncake, Mulan, Bring Home Happiness, Terracotta Warriors.

Art

Ceramics, painting, printmaking, sculpture, and textiles.

Music

Rhythm and beat, melody, style and form, performance practices, and gamelan.

Physical Education

Games, aquatics, kicking skills, striking skills, gymnastics, ball skills, manipulatives, rhythms, dance, and movement, climbing, cooperative games, and integrated health and fitness.

Counseling

Friendship, conflict resolution, feelings, self-control/managing anger, managing anxiety and worries, respect, responsibility, honesty, compassion, fairness, cooperation and working with others, tolerance and flexible thinking, self-esteem (identifying strengths and talents, interests and hobbies, dreams and passions, risk-taking and resilience, and personal safety.

Library

Library-specific skills (how to find, use, and share information), digital citizenship, literature appreciation, and support for grade-level curricular areas.

Service Learning

Kindergarten students befriend stroke patients at the Adventist Rehabilitation Centre.

Field Trips

Field trips for kindergarten students are visits to Act 3 International, Chinatown, and the Singapore Zoo.

Perceptual Motor (kindergarten only)

Locomotor skills and non-locomotor skills, spatial awareness, activities with gross motor focus, moving, moving my body, gross motor and locomotor skills, self-management skills, fine motor skills, cooperative play, basic fundamental class organization skills, and manipulative skills.

Kindergarten Curriculum Vision and Standards

Reading and Language Arts

Literacy learning and habits begin in the home and community. Singapore American School builds on these foundations to nurture and develop effective readers, writers, and communicators.

To promote the development of the literate student, we advocate a student‐centered, interactive approach that emphasizes listening, speaking, reading, and writing. A diversity of genres, time periods, and perspectives provides opportunities for students to experience, interpret, and use language in meaningful contexts for a variety of purposes and audiences.

Ultimately, our goal is to empower our students to be critical and creative thinkers who can reflect, adapt, and flourish in a changing world as competent and positive communicators throughout their lives.

Reading and Language Arts Curriculum Standards


Mathematics

It is a core mission of Singapore American School that every student be prepared to be a confident user of mathematics, a powerful quantitative thinker, and a productive problem solver. This mission can only be achieved within a mathematics program that balances mathematical skills, concepts, and applications, with instructional practices that emphasize explanation, justification and number sense. That is, SAS envisions in every classroom where mathematics is learned, a mathematics program built on teaching and learning that actively engages students in learning experiences that stimulate curiosity, inquiry, enjoyment, and deep understanding of the mathematics outlined in the Common Core.

Our vision is one of students consistently being expected and supported to:

  • persevere with solving interesting problems,
  • reason abstractly and quantitatively,
  • construct viable arguments,
  • critique the reasoning of others, and
  • model with mathematics.

Our vision is one of teachers consistently and expertly:

  • responding to most students answers with “why?”, “how do you know that?”, or “can you explain your thinking?”;
  • crafting instruction around powerful tasks that promote reasoning and problem solving and promote productive struggle;
  • eliciting, valuing, and celebrating alternative approaches to solving mathematics problems so that students are taught that mathematics is a sense-making process for understanding why and not memorizing the right procedure to get the one right answer;
  • using and connecting multiple representations – for example, models, diagrams, number lines, tables and graphs, as well as symbols – of all mathematical work to support the visualization of skills and concepts;
  • taking every opportunity to develop number sense by asking for, and justifying, estimates, mental calculations and equivalent forms of numbers;
  • creating language-rich classrooms that emphasize terminology, vocabulary, explanations and solutions in the context of meaningful discourse among students;
  • embedding the mathematical content scholars are learning in contexts to connect the mathematics to the real world; and
  • devoting the last five minutes of every lesson to some form of formative assessment, for example, an exit slip, to gather, and then use, evidence of student thinking and understanding.

This vision of teaching and learning in elaborated upon in the following 10 Characteristics of Effective Instruction in Mathematics.

Effective mathematics instruction is thoughtfully planned. An effective lesson provides multiple opportunities for student learning and must be carefully planned. The days of minimalist lesson plans like “examples 1 and 2 on page 154” or “lesson 6-4: vocabulary, discussion, practice, homework” do not adequately reflect the demands and expectations teachers face. Rather, prior to teaching a lesson, teachers should be empowered and expected to:

  • have a clear understanding of the specific learning expectations for their students and how and where these expectations fit in to the larger instructional unit;
  • select and try out the set of problems, tasks and/or activities that support the specific learning expectations;
  • identify a set of key questions and considered the required explanations that support the problems, tasks, and/or activities to be used;
  • consider the likely errors that students are likely to make and misconceptions that students are likely to have, and prepare strategies that address these errors and misconceptions; and
  • identify the means by which the degree of student learning will be determined.

The heart of effective mathematics instruction is an emphasis on problem solving, reasoning, and sense-making. Nearly every survey of business and industry addresses the critical need for current and prospective workers to be able to reason, question and solve problems. Thus the focus on problem solving as the heart of mathematics and on inquiry as the heart of science are societal, as well as educational, imperatives. However, beyond just rhetoric, effective instruction must consistently include opportunities for students to formulate questions and problems, make hypotheses and conjectures, gather and analyze data, and draw and justify conclusions. This is why students in effective classrooms regularly encounter questions such as “why?”, “how do you know?”,and “can you explain that?”

Effective mathematics instruction balances and blends conceptual understanding and procedural skills. Real mathematical literacy is as much about understanding the concept of division, knowing when and why to divide, and being able to interpret the meaning of a remainder as it is about merely knowing how to use an algorithm to find a quotient. Too often, the focus of instruction is on the one right way to get a single right answer, at the expense of understanding why this is the appropriate mathematics, how it relates to other mathematics, and when such mathematics should be used. For this reason, effective instruction balances a focus on conceptual understanding (e.g., the meaning of area and perimeter and how they are related) with a focus on procedural skill (e.g., how to find the area and perimeter of plane figures).

Effective mathematics instruction relies on alternative approaches and multiple representations. At nearly any moment in nearly any class, we know that many students are not processing the content in the way the teacher is processing the content. For example the teacher may be visualizing “three-quarters” as three out of four slices of a small pizza, while one student “sees” three quarters or 75 cents, another student “sees” three red balloons out of a total of four, and still another student “sees” three-quarters of an inch on a ruler. Effective instruction recognizes that students conceptualize mathematical and scientific concepts in different, but often equally appropriate, ways. Effective instruction incorporates deliberate attention to such multiple representations, including concrete materials, and to alternative approaches to accommodate the diverse of learning styles within every class.

Effective mathematics instruction uses contexts and connections to engage students and increase the relevance of what is being learned. Teachers have a choice. They can rely on abstractions and rules that are rarely connected to realistic situations or common contexts and ask students the equivalent of finding F when S = 81 in the function F = 4 (S – 65) + 10. Or teachers can take these abstractions and embed them in realistic contexts and problem situations that bring the mathematics and science to life. In this example, telling students that the speeding fine in a particular state is “$4 for every mile per hour over the 65 mph speed limit plus a $10 handling fee for the Police Department” and asking first for the fine when a driver is going 81 mph and then determining a driver’s speed if they received a fine of $102. Then consider using a graphing calculator or computer software to represent this function in a table and a graph as well as symbolically, showing where and how the “point” (81, 74) exists within each representation.

Effective mathematics instruction provides frequent opportunities for students to communicate their reasoning and engage in productive discourse. The active, engaged, thinking classroom is a classroom of questions and answers, of inquiries and explanations, of conjectures and justifications, and of written and oral discourse. We know that writing helps to clarify our thinking and that teaching another strengthens our own learning. That is why effective classrooms are often vibrant environments of student communication in the form of explanations, dialogues, arguments, and presentations.

Effective mathematics instruction incorporates on-going cumulative review. Almost no one masters something new after one or two lessons and one or two homework assignments. That is why one of the most effective strategies for fostering mastery and retention of critical skills is daily, cumulative review at the beginning of every lesson. Teachers do this as part of a daily warm-up or as “bell-work” that focuses on recent instruction or as a daily “mini-quiz” containing four to six problems that keep skills sharp, review vocabulary and reinforce conceptual understanding.

Effective mathematics instruction employs technology to enhance learning. Calculators, computers, and scientific instruments are increasingly important tools for supporting learning and making instruction more relevant. Graphing calculators that link symbolic, tabular, and graphical representations of functions help students develop critical understandings of algebra. Geometry software and scientific simulation software enable students to create mathematical and scientific environments and analyze the impact of changes in selected conditions. Electronic blackboards significantly enhance the impact of such software. But it is not the mere use of technology that enhances learning any more than it is the use of manipulative materials that “teach”. Rather, it is the appropriate, planned and deliberate use of technology to support the development of mathematical understanding that impacts learning.

Effective mathematics instruction uses multiple forms of assessment and uses the results of this assessment to adjust instruction. When our focus shifts from what was taught to what was learned, the focus must also shift to assessing what has been learned. While tests and quizzes will continue to be important components of assessment, it is how the results of these quizzes and tests are used to assess the impact of teaching, plan reteaching, prepare individual instruction and design additional diagnosis that translates assessment into better teaching and learning. In addition, effective teachers use observations, class work, projects, and similar vehicles to monitor the quality of learning. Finally, the results of a carefully aligned system of unit tests and end of grade and end of course assessments are regularly analyzed to make curricular and instructional modifications.

Effective teachers of mathematics reflect on their teaching, individually and collaboratively, and make revisions to enhance student learning. Finally, effective teachers replay their instruction, reflect on what appeared to work and what was more problematic, and examine student responses and work as part of an ongoing cycle of plan–teach–reflect–refine and plan all over again. Moreover, effective teachers work collaboratively with colleagues on issues of the mathematics embedded in the instructional tasks that are used, the pedagogical features of the instruction we conduct, and the student learning evidenced by analysis of student work.

Mathematics Curriculum Standards

enVision Math Overview for elementary parents

Mathematics Materials Review for elementary parents


Science

Singapore American School science program emphasizes an inquiry‐based, hands‐on, real world approach that makes connections across disciplines and leads to student understanding of essential concepts, skills, and processes.

To encourage responsible and ethical citizens in a global community, the SAS science program promotes the SAS core values and scientific habits of mind: curiosity, passion, perseverance, care, and action.

The science program recognizes that scientific problem solving, critical and creative thinking skills, and collaboration prepares students for an ever‐changing world.

Science Curriculum Standards


Social Studies

The purpose of social studies is to prepare students to become compassionate, responsible, and effective citizens of their local and global communities.

Powerful learning in social studies encourages students to think critically and consider multiple perspectives as they interpret the world and develop understandings that endure beyond the classroom.

Through systematic inquiry into meaningful and relevant content that integrates civics, economics, geography, and history, our goal is to empower students with:

  • the knowledge of the past to understand the present and plan for the future the skills to make educated and ethical decisions
  • the dispositions to innovate, collaborate and contribute to a just and sustainable world

Social Studies Curriculum Standards


World Language

Language and communication are at the heart of the human experience and individual identity. Therefore, it is imperative that all students have opportunities to become equipped both linguistically and culturally in other languages to establish and maintain relationships, and to function confidently within a global society.

We believe that the primary purpose of learning another language is to develop the ability to communicate effectively in real-life contexts. We recognize that a communicative approach, that meaningfully integrates authentic resources and technology, is essential to successful language acquisition.

We also believe that the learning of other languages:

  • develops students’ appreciation of cultural diversity, understanding of the connection between language and culture, and awareness of their own linguistic and cultural heritage
  • inspires curiosity and further develops communicative strategies and higher-level thinking skills for life-long language acquisition
  • provides access to new bodies of knowledge and helps students connect this learning to other disciplines

Spanish Curriculum Standards

Chinese Curriculum Standards

Arts

Singapore American School provides a liberal arts education for all students with opportunities for explorations and extensions in a variety of areas. In terms of arts education, SAS believes it is important to regularly provide support within three critical areas:

  1. learning about the arts through development of understanding and skills,
  2. experiencing the creation of the arts through student performances and exhibits; and
  3. appreciating professional arts experiences as an audience member.

In regard to “learning about the arts”, a quality arts education at SAS provides the following areas of support for all students:

  • Developing skills and techniques that are appropriately challenging within an arts discipline;
  • Understanding the communicative and expressive values of an art form;
  • Experiencing conceptualizations involved in the production of a work of art;
  • Establishing critical and analytical skills related to the quality of an art work;
  • Recognizing the context (e.g., cultural, historical, political) in which an art work is created by an artist or group of artists;
  • Appreciating the connections and inter-relatedness of the arts in other disciplines and in the world in which we live.

In regard to “experiencing the creation of the arts”, a quality arts education at SAS provides the following areas of support for all students:

  • Recognizing the scope and the depth of what is required in the production of a work of art;
  • Responding to the commitment and responsibilities that are required in the production of quality art work;
  • Experiencing the interaction of a performed or produced work of art and an audience;
  • Developing confidence in one’s self as an expressive communicator.

In regard to “appreciating professional arts experiences”, a quality arts education provides the following areas of support for all students:

  • Experiencing high-quality professional experiences within all of the arts disciplines;
  • Interacting with professional artists (e.g., artists-in-residence and guest speakers) to understand the craft and discipline that is involved at a professional level;
  • Reflecting on one’s own experience and understanding of professional art work;
  • Developing an appreciation for the arts within the context of quality of life.

Beliefs about the importance of arts education for ALL students:

  • the arts teach children how to think in the ways they learn best (i.e., through direct physical experiences of movement, sound, and images, allowing them to respond in the same concrete ways, while at the same time conceptualizing, solving complex problems, making decisions, and thinking creatively);
  • arts education provides natural learning opportunities for students with all styles of learning and all kinds of intelligences;
  • the kind of thinking fostered by education in the arts is in increasing demand in a complex, rapidly changing, diverse, and media-oriented world;
  • the arts teach students to know themselves and their cultural heritage and to better understand and appreciate others living in different times, places, and cultures;
  • study in the arts fosters self-esteem in students by developing valuable character traits that include self-discipline, perseverance, risk-taking, cooperation, and pride in accomplishment;
  • arts education is the best way to help students to effectively blend intellect with emotion (i.e., the arts offer the opportunity for “peak experiences” not easily achieved in other disciplines);
  • music, art, drama, and dance are a natural phenomenon, universally present in all human societies, past and present; and it is through this contextual experience of the arts that students develop an understanding for the world and know what it is to be fully human.

Art Curriculum Standards

Music Curriculum Standards

Physical Education

Paramount to physical education at SAS is promoting lifelong physical activity as fundamental to social, emotional, and physical well-being.

By exposing students to a wide variety of individual and collaborative physical activities, the physical education program offers students opportunities to develop interests and set personal goals, while experiencing inherent challenge and enjoyment.

The physical education program also provides an authentic context for students to learn and exhibit the SAS core values of compassion, honesty, fairness, respect, and responsibility.

Physical Education Curriculum Standards

Kindergarten Perceptual Motor Curriculum Standards

Counseling

Counseling services are an integral part of the elementary school. Counselors take a proactive, child-centered, and developmental approach in working with students, parents, and teachers. Our counselors teach character education lessons, provide individual and family counseling, facilitate small group workshops for students, lead parent coffees, conduct entry and exit family transitional programs, and coordinate student services in the school.

MISSION

The elementary school counseling program is committed to promoting the development of responsible global citizens by nurturing the academic, social, and emotional growth of all students.

PHILOSOPHY

The elementary school counselors at Singapore American School believe:

  • All students can be successful when provided support appropriate to their individual needs
  • The school counselor’s role is to advocate for every student
  • Our role is to promote and inspire a healthy well-balanced lifestyle
  • In celebrating diversity and recognizing the dignity and self worth of each student
  • Children in the elementary years are in stages of rapid growth and development and require unique academic, social and emotional support
  • Self advocacy and resiliency are skills that can be taught and nurtured

Library

The library works collaboratively with teachers to support the curriculum and to encourage a lifelong love of reading. The collection offers a diverse range of quality and engaging print and electronic items. Regular classes and flexible classes ensure that literature appreciation, information literacy, and curriculum objectives are met for all students. Special events, such as the Parent-Teacher Association-sponsored authors and illustrators-in-residence program, as well as division-wide literacy events, encourage our learners to celebrate and enjoy all things book-related.

Service Learning

Putting others before themselves from a young age, SAS students take part in service learning opportunities in school, in their community, and in regional and global communities. They find meaning in benefiting others when they brainstorm, research, interview, plan activities, build connections, and contribute to communities’ areas of need.

Service learning is integrated into our curriculum. Students are also encouraged to initiate their own service learning projects to work on valuable life skills and towards becoming responsible, enlightened, and reflective global citizens.

K-12 Service-Learning Standards and Indicators

Field Trips

During the school year, approximately four field trips are scheduled to supplement and extend learning presented in the classroom. Any expenses for these excursions are included in your child's tuition. Parents will be asked to complete and sign a permission slip for each field trip. Current medical information and passport numbers are required on the form.

After-School Activities

Elementary Activities and Athletics

Elementary students at SAS can choose from a wide range of organized after-school activities. Parents can select from a wide assortment of classes such as language, recreation, music, performing arts, arts and crafts, mind stretch, computers, and technology.

  • Classes are held once a week from 3:15 p.m. to 4:15 p.m.
  • There are three terms: fall, winter, and spring.
  • Fees and classes vary based on term length and activity.
  • Detailed information will be sent via email at the beginning of each term.

EASA Transportation EASA Testimonials

Grade 1

Grade One Subjects and Curriculum

SUBJECT

CURRICULUM OVERVIEW

Reading and Language Arts

Building Good Habits, Tackling Trouble, characters, Nonfiction Readers Learn About The World, We Can Be Our Own Teachers, Small Moments, Authors As Mentors, Writing Reviews, information books, and poetry.

Mathematics

Understanding addition, understanding subtraction, five and ten relationships, addition and subtraction facts to twelve, addition facts to 20, subtraction facts to 20, counting and number patterns to 120, tens and ones, comparing and ordering numbers to 100, adding with tens and ones, subtracting with tens and ones, length, time, using data to answer questions, geometry, and fractions of shapes.

Science

Solids and liquids, plants and animals, and simple machines.

Social Studies

Our Community, and Our Singapore Community.

World Language

Spanish
Level 1: Todo Sobre Mi, Mi Familia, Mi Casa Y Mi Comunidad, Mi Escuela Y Mis Amigos, y Mis Vacaciones.
Level 2: Picasso, Paella, Viaje a Barcelona, y Futbol.

Mandarin
Level 1: All About Me, My Family and Me, What I Do With My Friends, and What I Do In School.
Level 2: More About Me, More About Family, Home Sweet Home, and How I Get Around.
Level 3: My School, Let's Eat, My Community, and Travel.
Level 4: Mooncake, Mulan, Bring Home Happiness, and Terracotta Warriors.

Art

Ceramics, drawing, painting, sculpture, printmaking, mixed media collage, and textiles.

Music

Rhythm and beat, melody, style and form, harmony and texture, performance practices, and gamelan.

Physical Education

Games, ball skills, kicking skills, gymnastics, manipulatives, striking skills, aquatics, rhythms, dance, and movement, cooperative games, integrated health and fitness, and climbing.

Counseling

Friendship, conflict resolution, feelings, self-control and managing anger, managing anxiety and worries, respect, responsibility, honesty, compassion, fairness, cooperation, working with others, tolerance, flexible thinking, self-esteem, identifying strengths, talents, interests, hobbies, dreams, passions, risk-taking, resilience, and personal safety.

Library

Library-specific skills (how to find, use, and share information), digital citizenship, literature appreciation, and support for grade-level curricular areas.

Service Learning

First-grade students interact with their Singaporean buddies from Seng Kang Primary School by building relationships, celebrating festivals, and playing ethnic games.

Field Trips

Field trips for grade one students are to Little India, Bollywood Veggies farm, and Pulau Ubin.


Grade One Curriculum Vision and Standards

Reading and Language Arts

Literacy learning and habits begin in the home and community. Singapore American School builds on these foundations to nurture and develop effective readers, writers, and communicators.

To promote the development of the literate student, we advocate a student‐ centered, interactive approach that emphasizes listening, speaking, reading, and writing. A diversity of genres, time periods, and perspectives provides opportunities for students to experience, interpret, and use language in meaningful contexts for a variety of purposes and audiences.

Ultimately, our goal is to empower our students to be critical and creative thinkers who can reflect, adapt, and flourish in a changing world as competent and positive communicators throughout their lives.

Reading and Language Arts Curriculum Standards

Mathematics

It is a core mission of Singapore American School that every student be prepared to be a confident user of mathematics, a powerful quantitative thinker, and a productive problem solver. This mission can only be achieved within a mathematics program that balances mathematical skills, concepts, and applications, with instructional practices that emphasize explanation, justification and number sense. That is, SAS envisions in every classroom where mathematics is learned, a mathematics program built on teaching and learning that actively engages students in learning experiences that stimulate curiosity, inquiry, enjoyment, and deep understanding of the mathematics outlined in the Common Core.

Our vision is one of students consistently being expected and supported to:

  • persevere with solving interesting problems,
  • reason abstractly and quantitatively,
  • construct viable arguments,
  • critique the reasoning of others, and
  • model with mathematics.

Our vision is one of teachers consistently and expertly:

  • responding to most students answers with “why?”, “how do you know that?”, or “can you explain your thinking?”;
  • crafting instruction around powerful tasks that promote reasoning and problem solving and promote productive struggle;
  • eliciting, valuing, and celebrating alternative approaches to solving mathematics problems so that students are taught that mathematics is a sense-making process for understanding why and not memorizing the right procedure to get the one right answer;
  • using and connecting multiple representations – for example, models, diagrams, number lines, tables and graphs, as well as symbols – of all mathematical work to support the visualization of skills and concepts;
  • taking every opportunity to develop number sense by asking for, and justifying, estimates, mental calculations and equivalent forms of numbers;
  • creating language-rich classrooms that emphasize terminology, vocabulary, explanations and solutions in the context of meaningful discourse among students;
  • embedding the mathematical content scholars are learning in contexts to connect the mathematics to the real world; and
  • devoting the last five minutes of every lesson to some form of formative assessment, for example, an exit slip, to gather, and then use, evidence of student thinking and understanding.

This vision of teaching and learning in elaborated upon in the following ten characteristics of effective instruction in mathematics.

Effective mathematics instruction is thoughtfully planned. An effective lesson provides multiple opportunities for student learning and must be carefully planned. The days of minimalist lesson plans like “examples one and two on page 154” or “lesson 6-4: vocabulary, discussion, practice, and homework” do not adequately reflect the demands and expectations teachers face. Rather, prior to teaching a lesson, teachers should be empowered and expected to:

  • have a clear understanding of the specific learning expectations for their students and how and where these expectations fit in to the larger instructional unit;
  • select and try out the set of problems, tasks and/or activities that support the specific learning expectations;
  • identify a set of key questions and considered the required explanations that support the problems, tasks, and/or activities to be used;
  • consider the likely errors that students are likely to make and misconceptions that students are likely to have, and prepare strategies that address these errors and misconceptions; and
  • identify the means by which the degree of student learning will be determined.

The heart of effective mathematics instruction is an emphasis on problem solving, reasoning, and sense-making. Nearly every survey of business and industry addresses the critical need for current and prospective workers to be able to reason, question and solve problems. Thus the focus on problem solving as the heart of mathematics and on inquiry as the heart of science are societal, as well as educational, imperatives. However, beyond just rhetoric, effective instruction must consistently include opportunities for students to formulate questions and problems, make hypotheses and conjectures, gather and analyze data, and draw and justify conclusions. This is why students in effective classrooms regularly encounter questions like “why?”, “how do you know?”, and “can you explain that?”

Effective mathematics instruction balances and blends conceptual understanding and procedural skills. Real mathematical literacy is as much about understanding the concept of division, knowing when and why to divide, and being able to interpret the meaning of a remainder as it is about merely knowing how to use an algorithm to find a quotient. Too often, the focus of instruction is on the one right way to get a single right answer, at the expense of understanding why this is the appropriate mathematics, how it relates to other mathematics, and when such mathematics should be used. For this reason, effective instruction balances a focus on conceptual understanding (e.g., the meaning of area and perimeter and how they are related) with a focus on procedural skill (e.g., how to find the area and perimeter of plane figures).

Effective mathematics instruction relies on alternative approaches and multiple representations. At nearly any moment in nearly any class, we know that many students are not processing the content in the way the teacher is processing the content. For example, the teacher may be visualizing “three-quarters” as three out of four slices of a small pizza, while one student “sees” three quarters or 75 cents, another student “sees” three red balloons out of a total of four, and still another student “sees” three-quarters of an inch on a ruler. Effective instruction recognizes that students conceptualize mathematical and scientific concepts in different, but often equally appropriate, ways. Effective instruction incorporates deliberate attention to such multiple representations, including concrete materials, and to alternative approaches to accommodate the diversity of learning styles within every class.

Effective mathematics instruction uses contexts and connections to engage students and increase the relevance of what is being learned. Teachers have a choice. They can rely on abstractions and rules that are rarely connected to realistic situations or common contexts and ask students the equivalent of finding F when S = 81 in the function F = 4 (S – 65) + 10. Or teachers can take these abstractions and embed them in realistic contexts and problem situations that bring the mathematics and science to life. In this example, telling students that the speeding fine in a particular state is “$4 for every mile per hour over the 65 mph speed limit plus a $10 handling fee for the Police Department” and asking first for the fine when a driver is going 81 mph and then determining a driver’s speed if they received a fine of $102. Then consider using a graphing calculator or computer software to represent this function in a table and a graph as well as symbolically, showing where and how the “point” (81, 74) exists within each representation.

Effective mathematics instruction provides frequent opportunities for students to communicate their reasoning and engage in productive discourse. The active, engaged, thinking classroom is a classroom of questions and answers, of inquiries and explanations, of conjectures and justifications, and of written and oral discourse. We know that writing helps to clarify our thinking and that teaching another strengthens our own learning. That is why effective classrooms are often vibrant environments of student communication in the form of explanations, dialogues, arguments, and presentations.

Effective mathematics instruction incorporates on-going cumulative review. Almost no one masters something new after one or two lessons and one or two homework assignments. That is why one of the most effective strategies for fostering mastery and retention of critical skills is daily, cumulative review at the beginning of every lesson. Teachers do this as part of a daily warm-up or as “bell-work” that focuses on recent instruction or as a daily “mini-quiz” containing four to six problems that keep skills sharp, review vocabulary, and reinforce conceptual understanding.

Effective mathematics instruction employs technology to enhance learning. Calculators, computers and scientific instruments are increasingly important tools for supporting learning and making instruction more relevant. Graphing calculators that link symbolic, tabular, and graphical representations of functions help students develop critical understandings of algebra. Geometry software and scientific simulation software enable students to create mathematical and scientific environments and analyze the impact of changes in selected conditions. Electronic blackboards significantly enhance the impact of such software. But it is not the mere use of technology that enhances learning, any more than it is the use of manipulative materials that “teach”. Rather, it is the appropriate, planned, and deliberate use of technology to support the development of mathematical understanding that impacts learning.

Effective mathematics instruction uses multiple forms of assessment and uses the results of this assessment to adjust instruction. When our focus shifts from what was taught to what was learned, the focus must also shift to assessing what has been learned. While tests and quizzes will continue to be important components of assessment, it is how the results of these quizzes and tests are used to assess the impact of teaching, plan reteaching, prepare individual instruction, and design additional diagnoses that translates assessment into better teaching and learning. In addition, effective teachers use observations, class work, projects, and similar vehicles to monitor the quality of learning. Finally, the results of a carefully aligned system of unit tests and end of grade and end of course assessments are regularly analyzed to make curricular and instructional modifications.

Effective teachers of mathematics reflect on their teaching, individually and collaboratively, and make revisions to enhance student learning. Finally, effective teachers replay their instruction, reflect on what appeared to work and what was more problematic, and examine student responses and work as part of an ongoing cycle of plan–teach–reflect–refine and plan all over again. Moreover, effective teachers work collaboratively with colleagues on issues of the mathematics embedded in the instructional tasks that are used, the pedagogical features of the instruction we conduct, and the student learning evidenced by analysis of student work.

Mathematics Curriculum Standards

Envision Mathematics Overview for elementary parents

Mathematics Materials Review for elementary parents

Science

Singapore American School's science program emphasizes an inquiry‐based, hands‐on, real world approach that makes connections across disciplines and leads to student understanding of essential concepts, skills, and processes.

To encourage responsible and ethical citizens in a global community, the SAS science program promotes the SAS core values and scientific habits of mind: curiosity, passion, perseverance, caring, and action.

The science program recognizes that scientific problem solving, critical and creative thinking skills, and collaboration prepares students for an ever‐changing world.

Science Curriculum Standards

Social Studies

The purpose of social studies is to prepare students to become compassionate, responsible, and effective citizens of their local and global communities.

Powerful learning in social studies encourages students to think critically and consider multiple perspectives as they interpret the world and develop understandings that endure beyond the classroom.

Through systematic inquiry into meaningful and relevant content that integrates civics, economics, geography, and history, our goal is to empower students with:

  • the knowledge of the past to understand the present and plan for the future the skills to make educated and ethical decisions, and
  • the dispositions to innovate, collaborate and contribute to a just and sustainable world.

Social Studies Curriculum Standards

World Language

Language and communication are at the heart of the human experience and individual identity. Therefore, it is imperative that all students have opportunities to become equipped both linguistically and culturally in other languages to establish and maintain relationships, and to function confidently within a global society.

We believe that the primary purpose of learning another language is to develop the ability to communicate effectively in real-life contexts. We recognize that a communicative approach, that meaningfully integrates authentic resources and technology, is essential to successful language acquisition.

We also believe that the learning of other languages:

  • develops students’ appreciation of cultural diversity, understanding of the connection between language and culture, and awareness of their own linguistic and cultural heritage
  • inspires curiosity and further develops communicative strategies and higher-level thinking skills for life-long language acquisition
  • provides access to new bodies of knowledge and helps students connect this learning to other disciplines

Spanish Curriculum Standards

Chinese Curriculum Standards

Arts

Singapore American School provides a liberal arts education for all students with opportunities for explorations and extensions in a variety of areas. In terms of arts education, SAS believes it is important to regularly provide support within three critical areas:

  1. learning about the arts through development of understanding and skills,
  2. experiencing the creation of the arts through student performances and exhibits; and
  3. appreciating professional arts experiences as an audience member.

In regard to learning about the arts, a quality arts education at SAS provides the following areas of support for all students:

  • Developing skills and techniques that are appropriately challenging within an arts discipline;
  • Understanding the communicative and expressive values of an art form;
  • Experiencing conceptualizations involved in the production of a work of art;
  • Establishing critical and analytical skills related to the quality of an art work;
  • Recognizing the context (e.g., cultural, historical, political) in which an art work is created by an artist or group of artists;
  • Appreciating the connections and inter-relatedness of the arts in other disciplines and in the world in which we live.

In regard to experiencing the creation of the arts, a quality arts education at SAS provides the following areas of support for all students:

  • Recognizing the scope and the depth of what is required in the production of a work of art;
  • Responding to the commitment and responsibilities that are required in the production of quality artwork;
  • Experiencing the interaction of a performed or produced work of art and an audience;
  • Developing confidence in one’s self as an expressive communicator.

In regard to appreciating professional arts experiences, a quality arts education provides the following areas of support for all students:

  • Experiencing high quality professional experiences within all of the arts disciplines;
  • Interacting with professional artists (e.g., artists-in-residence and guest speakers) to understand the craft and discipline that is involved at a professional level;
  • Reflecting on one’s own experience and understanding of professional art work;
  • Developing an appreciation for the arts within the context of quality of life.

Beliefs about the importance of arts education for ALL students:

  • the arts teach children how to think in the ways they learn best (i.e., through direct physical experiences of movement, sound, and images, allowing them to respond in the same concrete ways, while at the same time conceptualizing, solving complex problems, making decisions, and thinking creatively);
  • arts education provides natural learning opportunities for students with all styles of learning and all kinds of intelligences;
  • the kind of thinking fostered by education in the arts is in increasing demand in a complex, rapidly changing, diverse, and media-oriented world;
  • the arts teach students to know themselves and their cultural heritage and to better understand and appreciate others living in different times, places, and cultures;
  • study in the arts fosters self-esteem in students by developing valuable character traits that include self-discipline, perseverance, risk-taking, cooperation, and pride in accomplishment;
  • arts education is the best way to help students to effectively blend intellect with emotion (i.e., the arts offer the opportunity for “peak experiences” not easily achieved in other disciplines);
  • music, art, drama, and dance are a natural phenomenon, universally present in all human societies, past and present; and it is through this contextual experience of the arts that students develop an understanding for the world and know what it is to be fully human.

Art Curriculum Standards

Music Curriculum Standards

Physical Education

Paramount to physical education at SAS is promoting lifelong physical activity as fundamental to social, emotional, and physical well-being.

By exposing students to a wide variety of individual and collaborative physical activities, the physical education program offers students opportunities to develop interests and set personal goals, while experiencing inherent challenge and enjoyment.

The physical education program also provides an authentic context for students to learn and exhibit the SAS core values of compassion, honesty, fairness, respect, and responsibility.

Physical Education Curriculum Standards

Counseling

Counseling services are an integral part of the elementary school. Counselors take a proactive, child-centered, and developmental approach in working with students, parents, and teachers. Our counselors teach character education lessons, provide individual and family counseling, facilitate small group workshops for students, lead parent coffees, conduct entry and exit family transitional programs, and coordinate student services in the school.

MISSION

The elementary school counseling program is committed to promoting the development of responsible global citizens by nurturing the academic, social, and emotional growth of all students.

PHILOSOPHY

The elementary school counselors at Singapore American School believe:

  • All students can be successful when provided support appropriate to their individual needs
  • The school counselor’s role is to advocate for every student
  • Our role is to promote and inspire a healthy well-balanced lifestyle
  • In celebrating diversity and recognizing the dignity and self worth of each student
  • Children in the elementary years are in stages of rapid growth and development and require unique academic, social, and emotional support
  • Self advocacy and resilience are skills that can be taught and nurtured

Library

The library works collaboratively with teachers to support the curriculum and to encourage a lifelong love of reading. The collection offers a diverse range of quality and engaging print and electronic items. Regular classes and flexible classes ensure that literature appreciation, information literacy, and curriculum objectives are met for all students. Special events, such as the Parent-Teacher Association-sponsored authors/illustrators-in-residence program, as well as division-wide literacy events, encourage our learners to celebrate and enjoy all things book-related.

Service Learning

Putting others before themselves from a young age, SAS students take part in service learning opportunities in school, in their community, and in regional and global communities. They find meaning in benefiting others when they brainstorm, research, interview, plan activities, build connections, and contribute to communities’ areas of need.

Service learning is integrated into our curriculum. Students are also encouraged to initiate their own service learning projects to work on valuable life skills and towards becoming responsible, enlightened, and reflective global citizens.

K-12 Service-Learning Standards and Indicators

Field Trips

During the school year, approximately four field trips are scheduled to supplement and extend learning presented in the classroom. Any expenses for these excursions are included in your child's tuition. Parents will be asked to complete and sign a permission slip for each field trip. Current medical information and passport numbers are required on the form.

After School Activities

Elementary Activities and Athletics

Elementary students at SAS can choose from a wide range of organized after-school activities. Parents can select from a wide assortment of classes such as language, recreation, music, performing arts, arts and crafts, mind stretch, computers, and technology.

  • Classes are held once a week from 3:15 p.m. to 4:15 p.m.
  • There are three terms: fall, winter, and spring.
  • Fees and classes vary based on term length and activity.
  • Detailed information will be sent via email at the beginning of each term.

EASA Transportation EASA Testimonials

Grade 2

Grade Two Subjects and Curriculum

SUBJECT

CURRICULUM OVERVIEW

Reading and Language Arts

Taking Charge of Reading, Characters Face Bigger Challenges, reading nonfiction, Reading the World, series reading clubs, nonfiction reading clubs, reading and role playing, reading for pleasure, authors as mentors, writing and revising realistic fiction, informational writing, persuasive writing, poetry, fairy tales, and folk tales, and writing to meet student needs.

Mathematics

Understanding addition and subtraction, addition strategies, subtraction strategies, working with equal groups, place value to 100, mental addition, mental subtraction, adding two-digit numbers, subtracting two-digit numbers, place value to 1,000, three-digit addition and subtraction, geometry, counting money, money, measuring length, time, graphs, and data.

Science

Pebbles, sand, and silt, building bridges, and balance and motion.

Social Studies

Exploring our Asian community.

World Language

Spanish
Level 1: Todo Sobre Mi, Mi Familia, Mi Casa Y Mi Comunidad, Mi Escuela Y Mis Amigos, y Mis Vacaciones.
Level 2: Picasso, Paella, Viaje a Barcelona, y Futbol.

Mandarin
Level 1: All About Me, My Family and Me, What I Do With My Friends, and What I Do In School.
Level 2: More About Me, More About Family, Home Sweet Home, How I Get Around.
Level 3: My School, Let's Eat, My Community, and Travel.
Level 4: Mooncake, Mulan, Bring Home Happiness, and Terracotta Warriors.

Art

Ceramics, drawing, painting, sculpture, printmaking, and textiles.

Music

Rhythm and beat, melody, style and form, harmony and texture, performance practices, and gamelan.

Physical Education

Games, ball skills, kicking skills, gymnastics, aquatics, manipulatives, striking skills, rhythms, dance, movement, cooperative games, integrated health and fitness, and climbing.

Counseling

Friendship, conflict resolution, feelings, self-control, managing anger, managing anxiety and worries, respect, responsibility, honesty, compassion, fairness, cooperation, working with others, tolerance, flexible thinking, self-esteem, identifying strengths, talents, interests, hobbies, dreams, passions, risk-taking, resilience, and personal safety.

Library

Library-specific skills (how to find, use, and share information), digital citizenship, literature appreciation, and support for grade-level curricular areas.

Service Learning

Second grade students feed 315 people each month through Food From the Heart, organize a Toys for Treats drive, and send dental hygiene kits to Cambodia.

Field Trips

Field trips for grade two students are a visit to NTUC Fairprice at Woodgrove or Sheng Siong Supermarket at Marsiling, a musical at Ulu Pandan Community Club, Chinatown, and the Asian Civilisations Museum.

Grade Two Curriculum Vision and Standards

Reading and Language Arts

Literacy learning and habits begin in the home and community. Singapore American School builds on these foundations to nurture and develop effective readers, writers, and communicators.

To promote the development of the literate student, we advocate a student‐ centered, interactive approach that emphasizes listening, speaking, reading, and writing. A diversity of genres, time periods, and perspectives provides opportunities for students to experience, interpret, and use language in meaningful contexts for a variety of purposes and audiences.

Ultimately, our goal is to empower our students to be critical and creative thinkers who can reflect, adapt, and flourish in a changing world as competent and positive communicators throughout their lives.

Reading and Language Arts Curriculum Standards

Mathematics

It is a core mission of Singapore American School that every student be prepared to be a confident user of mathematics, a powerful quantitative thinker, and a productive problem solver. This mission can only be achieved within a mathematics program that balances mathematical skills, concepts, and applications, with instructional practices that emphasize explanation, justification and number sense. That is, SAS envisions in every classroom where mathematics is learned, a mathematics program built on teaching and learning that actively engages students in learning experiences that stimulate curiosity, inquiry, enjoyment, and deep understanding of the mathematics outlined in the Common Core.

Our vision is one of students consistently being expected and supported to:

  • persevere with solving interesting problems,
  • reason abstractly and quantitatively,
  • construct viable arguments,
  • critique the reasoning of others, and
  • model with mathematics.

Our vision is one of teachers consistently and expertly:

  • responding to most students answers with “why?”, “how do you know that?”, or “can you explain your thinking?”;
  • crafting instruction around powerful tasks that promote reasoning and problem solving and promote productive struggle;
  • eliciting, valuing, and celebrating alternative approaches to solving mathematics problems so that students are taught that mathematics is a sense-making process for understanding why and not memorizing the right procedure to get the one right answer;
  • using and connecting multiple representations – for example, models, diagrams, number lines, tables and graphs, as well as symbols – of all mathematical work to support the visualization of skills and concepts;
  • taking every opportunity to develop number sense by asking for, and justifying, estimates, mental calculations, and equivalent forms of numbers;
  • creating language-rich classrooms that emphasize terminology, vocabulary, explanations, and solutions in the context of meaningful discourse among students;
  • embedding the mathematical content scholars are learning in contexts to connect the mathematics to the real world; and
  • devoting the last five minutes of every lesson to some form of formative assessment, for example, an exit slip, to gather, and then use, evidence of student thinking and understanding.

This vision of teaching and learning in elaborated upon in the following ten Characteristics of Effective Instruction in Mathematics.

Effective mathematics instruction is thoughtfully planned. An effective lesson provides multiple opportunities for student learning and must be carefully planned. The days of minimalist lesson plans like “examples one and two on page 154” or “lesson 6-4: vocabulary, discussion, practice, homework” do not adequately reflect the demands and expectations teachers face. Rather, prior to teaching a lesson, teachers should be empowered and expected to:

  • have a clear understanding of the specific learning expectations for their students and how and where these expectations fit in to the larger instructional unit;
  • select and try out the set of problems, tasks, and/or activities that support the specific learning expectations;
  • identify a set of key questions and considered the required explanations that support the problems, tasks, and/or activities to be used;
  • consider the likely errors that students are likely to make and misconceptions that students are likely to have, and prepare strategies that address these errors and misconceptions; and
  • identify the means by which the degree of student learning will be determined.

The heart of effective mathematics instruction is an emphasis on problem solving, reasoning, and sense-making. Nearly every survey of business and industry addresses the critical need for current and prospective workers to be able to reason, question, and solve problems. Thus the focus on problem solving as the heart of mathematics and on inquiry as the heart of science are societal, as well as educational, imperatives. However, beyond just rhetoric, effective instruction must consistently include opportunities for students to formulate questions and problems, make hypotheses and conjectures, gather, and analyze data, and draw and justify conclusions. This is why students in effective classrooms regularly encounter questions like “why?”, “how do you know?”, and “can you explain that?”

Effective mathematics instruction balances and blends conceptual understanding and procedural skills. Real mathematical literacy is as much about understanding the concept of division, knowing when and why to divide, and being able to interpret the meaning of a remainder as it is about merely knowing how to use an algorithm to find a quotient. Too often, the focus of instruction is on the one right way to get a single right answer, at the expense of understanding why this is the appropriate mathematics, how it relates to other mathematics, and when such mathematics should be used. For this reason, effective instruction balances a focus on conceptual understanding (e.g., the meaning of area and perimeter and how they are related) with a focus on procedural skill (e.g., how to find the area and perimeter of plane figures).

Effective mathematics instruction relies on alternative approaches and multiple representations. At nearly any moment in nearly any class, we know that many students are not processing the content in the way the teacher is processing the content. For example the teacher may be visualizing “three-quarters” as three out of four slices of a small pizza, while one student “sees” three quarters or 75 cents, another student “sees” three red balloons out of a total of four, and still another student “sees” three-quarters of an inch on a ruler. Effective instruction recognizes that students conceptualize mathematical and scientific concepts in different, but often equally appropriate, ways. Effective instruction incorporates deliberate attention to such multiple representations, including concrete materials, and to alternative approaches to accommodate the diversity of learning styles within every class.

Effective mathematics instruction uses contexts and connections to engage students and increase the relevance of what is being learned. Teachers have a choice. They can rely on abstractions and rules that are rarely connected to realistic situations or common contexts and ask students the equivalent of finding F when S = 81 in the function F = 4 (S – 65) + 10. Or teachers can take these abstractions and embed them in realistic contexts and problem situations that bring the mathematics and science to life. In this example, telling students that the speeding fine in a particular state is “$4 for every mile per hour over the 65 mph speed limit plus a $10 handling fee for the Police Department” and asking first for the fine when a driver is going 81 mph and then determining a driver’s speed if they received a fine of $102. Then consider using a graphing calculator or computer software to represent this function in a table and a graph as well as symbolically, showing where and how the “point” (81, 74) exists within each representation.

Effective mathematics instruction provides frequent opportunities for students to communicate their reasoning and engage in productive discourse. The active, engaged, thinking classroom is a classroom of questions and answers, of inquiries and explanations, of conjectures and justifications, and of written and oral discourse. We know that writing helps to clarify our thinking and that teaching another strengthens our own learning. That is why effective classrooms are often vibrant environments of student communication in the form of explanations, dialogues, arguments, and presentations.

Effective mathematics instruction incorporates on-going cumulative review. Almost no one masters something new after one or two lessons and one or two homework assignments. That is why one of the most effective strategies for fostering mastery and retention of critical skills is daily, cumulative review at the beginning of every lesson. Teachers do this as part of a daily warm-up or as “bell-work” that focuses on recent instruction or as a daily “mini-quiz” containing four to six problems that keep skills sharp, review vocabulary, and reinforce conceptual understanding.

Effective mathematics instruction employs technology to enhance learning. Calculators, computers, and scientific instruments are increasingly important tools for supporting learning and making instruction more relevant. Graphing calculators that link symbolic, tabular, and graphical representations of functions help students develop critical understandings of algebra. Geometry software and scientific simulation software enable students to create mathematical and scientific environments and analyze the impact of changes in selected conditions. Electronic blackboards significantly enhance the impact of such software. But it is not the mere use of technology that enhances learning any more than it is the use of manipulative materials that “teach”. Rather, it is the appropriate, planned, and deliberate use of technology to support the development of mathematical understanding that impacts learning.

Effective mathematics instruction uses multiple forms of assessment and uses the results of this assessment to adjust instruction. When our focus shifts from what was taught to what was learned, the focus must also shift to assessing what has been learned. While tests and quizzes will continue to be important components of assessment, it is how the results of these quizzes and tests are used to assess the impact of teaching, plan reteaching, prepare individual instruction, and design additional diagnosis that translates assessment into better teaching and learning. In addition, effective teachers use observations, class work, projects, and similar vehicles to monitor the quality of learning. Finally, the results of a carefully aligned system of unit tests and end of grade and end of course assessments are regularly analyzed to make curricular and instructional modifications.

Effective teachers of mathematics reflect on their teaching, individually and collaboratively, and make revisions to enhance student learning. Finally, effective teachers replay their instruction, reflect on what appeared to work and what was more problematic, and examine student responses and work as part of an ongoing cycle of plan–teach–reflect–refine and plan all over again. Moreover, effective teachers work collaboratively with colleagues on issues of the mathematics embedded in the instructional tasks that are used, the pedagogical features of the instruction we conduct, and the student learning evidenced by analysis of student work.

Mathematics Curriculum Standards

Envision Mathematics Overview for Elementary Parents

Mathematics Materials Review for Elementary Parents

Science

Singapore American School science program emphasizes an inquiry‐based, hands‐on, real world approach that makes connections across disciplines and leads to student understanding of essential concepts, skills, and processes.

To encourage responsible and ethical citizens in a global community, the SAS science program promotes the SAS core values and scientific habits of mind: curiosity, passion, perseverance, caring, and action.

The science program recognizes that scientific problem solving, critical and creative thinking skills, and collaboration prepares students for an ever‐changing world.

Science Curriculum Standards

Social Studies

The purpose of social studies is to prepare students to become compassionate, responsible, and effective citizens of their local and global communities.

Powerful learning in social studies encourages students to think critically and consider multiple perspectives as they interpret the world and develop understandings that endure beyond the classroom.

Through systematic inquiry into meaningful and relevant content that integrates civics, economics, geography, and history, our goal is to empower students with:

  • the knowledge of the past to understand the present and plan for the future the skills to make educated and ethical decisions
  • the dispositions to innovate, collaborate and contribute to a just and sustainable world

Social Studies Curriculum Standards

World Language

Language and communication are at the heart of the human experience and individual identity. Therefore, it is imperative that all students have opportunities to become equipped both linguistically and culturally in other languages to establish and maintain relationships, and to function confidently within a global society.

We believe that the primary purpose of learning another language is to develop the ability to communicate effectively in real-life contexts. We recognize that a communicative approach, that meaningfully integrates authentic resources and technology, is essential to successful language acquisition.

We also believe that the learning of other languages:

  • develops students’ appreciation of cultural diversity, understanding of the connection between language and culture, and awareness of their own linguistic and cultural heritage
  • inspires curiosity and further develops communicative strategies and higher-level thinking skills for life-long language acquisition
  • provides access to new bodies of knowledge and helps students connect this learning to other disciplines

Spanish Curriculum Standards

Chinese Curriculum Standards

Arts

Singapore American School provides a liberal arts education for all students with opportunities for explorations and extensions in a variety of areas. In terms of arts education, SAS believes it is important to regularly provide support within three critical areas:

  1. learning about the arts through development of understanding and skills,
  2. experiencing the creation of the arts through student performances and exhibits; and
  3. appreciating professional arts experiences as an audience member.

In regard to learning about the arts, a quality arts education at SAS provides the following areas of support for all students:

  • Developing skills and techniques that are appropriately challenging within an arts discipline;
  • Understanding the communicative and expressive values of an art form;
  • Experiencing conceptualizations involved in the production of a work of art;
  • Establishing critical and analytical skills related to the quality of an art work;
  • Recognizing the context (e.g., cultural, historical, and political) in which an art work is created by an artist or group of artists;
  • Appreciating the connections and inter-relatedness of the arts in other disciplines and in the world in which we live.

In regard to experiencing the creation of the arts, a quality arts education at SAS provides the following areas of support for all students:

  • Recognizing the scope and the depth of what is required in the production of a work of art;
  • Responding to the commitment and responsibilities that are required in the production of quality art work;
  • Experiencing the interaction of a performed/produced work of art and an audience;
  • Developing confidence in one’s self as an expressive communicator.

In regard to appreciating professional arts experiences, a quality arts education provides the following areas of support for all students:

  • Experiencing high quality professional experiences within all of the arts disciplines;
  • Interacting with professional artists (e.g., artists-in-residence and guest speakers) to understand the craft and discipline that is involved at a professional level;
  • Reflecting on one’s own experience and understanding of professional art work;
  • Developing an appreciation for the arts within the context of quality of life.

Beliefs about the importance of arts education for ALL students:

  • the arts teach children how to think in the ways they learn best (i.e., through direct physical experiences of movement, sound, and images, allowing them to respond in the same concrete ways, while at the same time conceptualizing, solving complex problems, making decisions, and thinking creatively);
  • arts education provides natural learning opportunities for students with all styles of learning and all kinds of intelligences;
  • the kind of thinking fostered by education in the arts is in increasing demand in a complex, rapidly changing, diverse, and media-oriented world;
  • the arts teach students to know themselves and their cultural heritage and to better understand and appreciate others living in different times, places, and cultures;
  • study in the arts fosters self-esteem in students by developing valuable character traits that include self-discipline, perseverance, risk-taking, cooperation, and pride in accomplishment;
  • arts education is the best way to help students to effectively blend intellect with emotion (i.e., the arts offer the opportunity for “peak experiences” not easily achieved in other disciplines);
  • music, art, drama, and dance are a natural phenomenon, universally present in all human societies, past and present; and it is through this contextual experience of the arts that students develop an understanding for the world and know what it is to be fully human.

Art Curriculum Standards

Music Curriculum Standards

Physical Education

Paramount to physical education at SAS is promoting lifelong physical activity as fundamental to social, emotional, and physical well-being.

By exposing students to a wide variety of individual and collaborative physical activities, the physical education program offers students opportunities to develop interests and set personal goals, while experiencing inherent challenge and enjoyment.

The physical education program also provides an authentic context for students to learn and exhibit the SAS core values of compassion, honesty, fairness, respect, and responsibility.

Physical Education Curriculum Standards

Counseling

Counseling services are an integral part of the elementary school. Counselors take a proactive, child-centered, and developmental approach in working with students, parents, and teachers. Our counselors teach character education lessons, provide individual and family counseling, facilitate small group workshops for students, lead parent coffees, conduct entry and exit family transitional programs, and coordinate student services in the school.

MISSION

The elementary school counseling program is committed to promoting the development of responsible global citizens by nurturing the academic, social, and emotional growth of all students.

PHILOSOPHY

The elementary school counselors at Singapore American School believe:

  • All students can be successful when provided support appropriate to their individual needs
  • The school counselor’s role is to advocate for every student
  • Our role is to promote and inspire a healthy well-balanced lifestyle
  • In celebrating diversity and recognizing the dignity and self worth of each student
  • Children in the elementary years are in stages of rapid growth and development and require unique academic, social, and emotional support
  • Self advocacy and resilience are skills that can be taught and nurtured

Library

The library works collaboratively with teachers to support the curriculum and to encourage a lifelong love of reading. The collection offers a diverse range of quality and engaging print and electronic items. Regular classes and flexible classes ensure that literature appreciation, information literacy, and curriculum objectives are met for all students. Special events, such as the Parent-Teacher Association-sponsored authors/illustrators-in-residence program, as well as division-wide literacy events, encourage our learners to celebrate and enjoy all things book-related.

Service Learning

Putting others before themselves from a young age, SAS students take part in service learning opportunities in school, in their community, and in regional and global communities. They find meaning in benefiting others when they brainstorm, research, interview, plan activities, build connections, and contribute to communities’ areas of need.

Service learning is integrated into our curriculum. Students are also encouraged to initiate their own service learning projects to work on valuable life skills and towards becoming responsible, enlightened, and reflective global citizens.

K-12 Service-Learning Standards and Indicators

Field Trips

During the school year, approximately four field trips are scheduled to supplement and extend learning presented in the classroom. Any expenses for these excursions are included in your child's tuition. Parents will be asked to complete and sign a permission slip for each field trip. Current medical information and passport numbers are required on the form.

After School Activities

Elementary Activities and Athletics

Elementary students at SAS can choose from a wide range of organized after-school activities. Parents can select from a wide assortment of classes such as language, recreation, music, performing arts, arts and crafts, mind stretch, computers, and technology.

  • Classes are held once a week from 3:15 p.m. to 4:15 p.m.
  • There are three terms: fall, winter, and spring.
  • Fees and classes vary based on term length and activity.
  • Detailed information will be sent via email at the beginning of each term.

EASA Transportation EASA Testimonials

Grade 3

Grade Three Subjects and Curriculum

SUBJECT

CURRICULUM OVERVIEW

Reading and Language Arts

Building a reading life, crafting true stories, reading nonfiction expository, paragraph structure and the art of information writing, information writing (expository), following characters in series book clubs, fiction writing - emphasis on characters, changing the world - persuasive writing, mystery book clubs, poetry writing, the genre of test reading, independent writing project, social issues book clubs, series book clubs.

Mathematics

Numeration, number sense: addition and subtraction, using place value to add and subtract, meanings of multiplication, multiplication facts: use patterns, multiplication facts: use known facts, meanings of division, division facts, understanding fractions, fraction comparison and equivalence, two-dimensional shapes and their attributes, time, perimeter, area, liquid volume and mass, data.

Science

Matter and energy, solid earth, structures of life.

Social Studies

A village called Earth, test of time.

World Language

Spanish
Level 1: Todo Sobre Mi, Mi Familia, Mi Casa Y Mi Comunidad, Mi Escuela Y Mis Amigos, Mis Vacaciones.
Level 2: Picasso, Paella, Viaje a Barcelona, Futbol.

Mandarin
Level 1: All about me, my family and me, what I do with my friends, what I do In school.
Level 2: More about me, more about family, home sweet home, how I get around.
Level 3: My school, let's eat, my community, travel.
Level 4: Mooncake, Mulan, bring home happiness, terracotta warriors.

Art

Ceramics, drawing, painting, sculpture, printmaking, textiles.

Music

Rhythm and beat, melody, style and form, harmony and texture, performance practices, gamelan.

Physical Education

Basketball, soccer, gymnastics, aquatics, fitness, floor hockey, rhythms, dance, movement, climbing, net skills, cooperative games.

Counseling

Anxiety and stress, managing anger, conflict resolution, bullying, digital citizenship: the power of words, rational vs. irrational thinking, self-esteem, problem solving, critical thinking, friendship, rejection, global citizenship.

Library

Library-specific skills (how to find, use, and share information), digital citizenship, literature appreciation, and support for grade-level curricular areas.

Service Learning

Third-grade students serve as mentors to students from Innova Primary School through the Kids READ service program, and conduct Read to Feed fundraising and leprosy home visits.

Field Trips

Field trips for grade three students are visits to Oh Chin Huat Hydroponic Farms, watching a play at Ulu Pandan Community Club, watching a play at DBS Arts Centre, and the Jurong Bird Park.

Grade Three Curriculum Vision and Standards

Reading and Language Arts

Literacy learning and habits begin in the home and community. Singapore American School builds on these foundations to nurture and develop effective readers, writers, and communicators.

To promote the development of the literate student, we advocate a student‐centered, interactive approach that emphasizes listening, speaking, reading, and writing. A diversity of genres, time periods, and perspectives provides opportunities for students to experience, interpret, and use language in meaningful contexts for a variety of purposes and audiences.

Ultimately, our goal is to empower our students to be critical and creative thinkers who can reflect, adapt, and flourish in a changing world as competent and positive communicators throughout their lives.

Reading and Language Arts Curriculum Standards

Mathematics

It is a core mission of Singapore American School that every student be prepared to be a confident user of mathematics, a powerful quantitative thinker, and a productive problem solver. This mission can only be achieved within a mathematics program that balances mathematical skills, concepts, and applications, with instructional practices that emphasize explanation, justification, and number sense. That is, SAS envisions in every classroom where mathematics is learned, a mathematics program built on teaching and learning that actively engages students in learning experiences that stimulate curiosity, inquiry, enjoyment, and deep understanding of the mathematics outlined in the Common Core.

Our vision is one of students consistently being expected and supported to:

  • persevere with solving interesting problems,
  • reason abstractly and quantitatively,
  • construct viable arguments,
  • critique the reasoning of others, and
  • model with mathematics.

Our vision is one of teachers consistently and expertly:

  • responding to most students answers with “why?”, “how do you know that?”, or “can you explain your thinking?”;
  • crafting instruction around powerful tasks that promote reasoning and problem solving and promote productive struggle;
  • eliciting, valuing, and celebrating alternative approaches to solving mathematics problems so that students are taught that mathematics is a sense-making process for understanding why and not memorizing the right procedure to get the one right answer;
  • using and connecting multiple representations–for example, models, diagrams, number lines, tables and graphs, as well as symbols–of all mathematical work to support the visualization of skills and concepts;
  • taking every opportunity to develop number sense by asking for, and justifying, estimates, mental calculations and equivalent forms of numbers;
  • creating language-rich classrooms that emphasize terminology, vocabulary, explanations, and solutions in the context of meaningful discourse among students;
  • embedding the mathematical content scholars are learning in contexts to connect the mathematics to the real world; and
  • devoting the last five minutes of every lesson to some form of formative assessment, for example, an exit slip, to gather, and then use, evidence of student thinking and understanding.

This vision of teaching and learning in elaborated upon in the following ten Characteristics of Effective Instruction in Mathematics.

Effective mathematics instruction is thoughtfully planned. An effective lesson provides multiple opportunities for student learning and must be carefully planned. The days of minimalist lesson plans like “examples one and two on page 154” or “lesson 6-4: vocabulary, discussion, practice, homework” do not adequately reflect the demands and expectations teachers face. Rather, prior to teaching a lesson, teachers should be empowered and expected to:

  • have a clear understanding of the specific learning expectations for their students and how and where these expectations fit in to the larger instructional unit;
  • select and try out the set of problems, tasks and/or activities that support the specific learning expectations;
  • identify a set of key questions and considered the required explanations that support the problems, tasks, and/or activities to be used;
  • consider the likely errors that students are likely to make and misconceptions that students are likely to have, and prepare strategies that address these errors and misconceptions; and
  • identify the means by which the degree of student learning will be determined.

The heart of effective mathematics instruction is an emphasis on problem solving, reasoning and sense-making. Nearly every survey of business and industry addresses the critical need for current and prospective workers to be able to reason, question and solve problems. Thus the focus on problem solving as the heart of mathematics and on inquiry as the heart of science are societal, as well as educational, imperatives. However, beyond just rhetoric, effective instruction must consistently include opportunities for students to formulate questions and problems, make hypotheses and conjectures, gather and analyze data, and draw and justify conclusions. This is why students in effective classrooms regularly encounter questions like “why?”, “how do you know?”, and “can you explain that?”

Effective mathematics instruction balances and blends conceptual understanding and procedural skills. Real mathematical literacy is as much about understanding the concept of division, knowing when and why to divide, and being able to interpret the meaning of a remainder as it is about merely knowing how to use an algorithm to find a quotient. Too often, the focus of instruction is on the one right way to get a single right answer, at the expense of understanding why this is the appropriate mathematics, how it relates to other mathematics, and when such mathematics should be used. For this reason, effective instruction balances a focus on conceptual understanding (e.g., the meaning of area and perimeter and how they are related) with a focus on procedural skill (e.g., how to find the area and perimeter of plane figures).

Effective mathematics instruction relies on alternative approaches and multiple representations. At nearly any moment in nearly any class, we know that many students are not processing the content in the way the teacher is processing the content. For example the teacher may be visualizing “three-quarters” as three out of four slices of a small pizza, while one student “sees” three quarters or 75 cents, another student “sees” three red balloons out of a total of four, and still another student “sees” three-quarters of an inch on a ruler. Effective instruction recognizes that students conceptualize mathematical and scientific concepts in different, but often equally appropriate, ways. Effective instruction incorporates deliberate attention to such multiple representations, including concrete materials, and to alternative approaches to accommodate the diversity of learning styles within every class.

Effective mathematics instruction uses contexts and connections to engage students and increase the relevance of what is being learned. Teachers have a choice. They can rely on abstractions and rules that are rarely connected to realistic situations or common contexts and ask students the equivalent of finding F when S = 81 in the function F = 4 (S – 65) + 10. Or teachers can take these abstractions and embed them in realistic contexts and problem situations that bring the mathematics and science to life. In this example, telling students that the speeding fine in a particular state is “$4 for every mile per hour over the 65 mph speed limit plus a $10 handling fee for the Police Department” and asking first for the fine when a driver is going 81 mph and then determining a driver’s speed if they received a fine of $102. Then consider using a graphing calculator or computer software to represent this function in a table and a graph as well as symbolically, showing where and how the “point” (81, 74) exists within each representation.

Effective mathematics instruction provides frequent opportunities for students to communicate their reasoning and engage in productive discourse. The active, engaged, thinking classroom is a classroom of questions and answers, of inquiries and explanations, of conjectures and justifications, and of written and oral discourse. We know that writing helps to clarify our thinking and that teaching another strengthens our own learning. That is why effective classrooms are often vibrant environments of student communication in the form of explanations, dialogues, arguments, and presentations.

Effective mathematics instruction incorporates on-going cumulative review. Almost no one masters something new after one or two lessons and one or two homework assignments. That is why one of the most effective strategies for fostering mastery and retention of critical skills is daily, cumulative review at the beginning of every lesson. Teachers do this as part of a daily warm-up or as “bell-work” that focuses on recent instruction or as a daily “mini-quiz” containing four to six problems that keep skills sharp, review vocabulary and reinforce conceptual understanding.

Effective mathematics instruction employs technology to enhance learning. Calculators, computers, and scientific instruments are increasingly important tools for supporting learning and making instruction more relevant. Graphing calculators that link symbolic, tabular, and graphical representations of functions help students develop critical understandings of algebra. Geometry software and scientific simulation software enable students to create mathematical and scientific environments and analyze the impact of changes in selected conditions. Electronic blackboards significantly enhance the impact of such software. But it is not the mere use of technology that enhances learning, any more than it is the use of manipulative materials that “teach”. Rather, it is the appropriate, planned, and deliberate use of technology to support the development of mathematical understanding that impacts learning.

Effective mathematics instruction uses multiple forms of assessment and uses the results of this assessment to adjust instruction. When our focus shifts from what was taught to what was learned, the focus must also shift to assessing what has been learned. While tests and quizzes will continue to be important components of assessment, it is how the results of these quizzes and tests are used to assess the impact of teaching, plan reteaching, prepare individual instruction, and design additional diagnosis that translates assessment into better teaching and learning. In addition, effective teachers use observations, class work, projects, and similar vehicles to monitor the quality of learning. Finally, the results of a carefully aligned system of unit tests and end of grade and end of course assessments are regularly analyzed to make curricular and instructional modifications.

Effective teachers of mathematics reflect on their teaching, individually and collaboratively, and make revisions to enhance student learning. Finally, effective teachers replay their instruction, reflect on what appeared to work and what was more problematic, and examine student responses and work as part of an ongoing cycle of plan–teach–reflect–refine and plan all over again. Moreover, effective teachers work collaboratively with colleagues on issues of the mathematics embedded in the instructional tasks that are used, the pedagogical features of the instruction we conduct, and the student learning evidenced by analysis of student work.

Mathematics Curriculum Standards

Envision Mathematics Overview for elementary parents

Math Materials Review for elementary parents

Science

Singapore American School science program emphasizes an inquiry‐based, hands‐on, real world approach that makes connections across disciplines and leads to student understanding of essential concepts, skills, and processes.

To encourage responsible and ethical citizens in a global community, the SAS science program promotes the SAS core values and scientific habits of mind: curiosity, passion, perseverance, care, and action.

The science program recognizes that scientific problem solving, critical and creative thinking skills, and collaboration prepares students for an ever‐changing world.

Science Curriculum Standards

Social Studies

The purpose of social studies is to prepare students to become compassionate, responsible, and effective citizens of their local and global communities.

Powerful learning in social studies encourages students to think critically and consider multiple perspectives as they interpret the world and develop understandings that endure beyond the classroom.

Through systematic inquiry into meaningful and relevant content that integrates civics, economics, geography, and history, our goal is to empower students with:

  • the knowledge of the past to understand the present and plan for the future the skills to make educated and ethical decisions
  • the dispositions to innovate, collaborate, and contribute to a just and sustainable world

Social Studies Curriculum Standards

World Language

Language and communication are at the heart of the human experience and individual identity. Therefore, it is imperative that all students have opportunities to become equipped both linguistically and culturally in other languages to establish and maintain relationships, and to function confidently within a global society.

We believe that the primary purpose of learning another language is to develop the ability to communicate effectively in real-life contexts. We recognize that a communicative approach, that meaningfully integrates authentic resources and technology, is essential to successful language acquisition.

We also believe that the learning of other languages:

  • develops students’ appreciation of cultural diversity, understanding of the connection between language and culture, and awareness of their own linguistic and cultural heritage
  • inspires curiosity and further develops communicative strategies and higher-level thinking skills for life-long language acquisition
  • provides access to new bodies of knowledge and helps students connect this learning to other disciplines

Spanish Curriculum Standards

Chinese Curriculum Standards

Arts

Singapore American School provides a liberal arts education for all students with opportunities for explorations and extensions in a variety of areas. In terms of arts education, SAS believes it is important to regularly provide support within three critical areas:

  1. learning about the arts through development of understanding and skills,
  2. experiencing the creation of the arts through student performances and exhibits; and
  3. appreciating professional arts experiences as an audience member.

In regard to learning about the arts, a quality arts education at SAS provides the following areas of support for all students:

  • Developing skills and techniques that are appropriately challenging within an arts discipline;
  • Understanding the communicative and expressive values of an art form;
  • Experiencing conceptualizations involved in the production of a work of art;
  • Establishing critical and analytical skills related to the quality of an art work;
  • Recognizing the context (e.g., cultural, historical, and political) in which an art work is created by an artist or group of artists;
  • Appreciating the connections and inter-relatedness of the arts in other disciplines and in the world in which we live.

In regard to experiencing the creation of the arts, a quality arts education at SAS provides the following areas of support for all students:

  • Recognizing the scope and the depth of what is required in the production of a work of art;
  • Responding to the commitment and responsibilities that are required in the production of quality art work;
  • Experiencing the interaction of a performed/produced work of art and an audience;
  • Developing confidence in one’s self as an expressive communicator.

In regard to appreciating professional arts experiences, a quality arts education provides the following areas of support for all students:

  • Experiencing high quality professional experiences within all of the arts disciplines;
  • Interacting with professional artists (e.g., artists-in-residence and guest speakers) to understand the craft and discipline that is involved at a professional level;
  • Reflecting on one’s own experience and understanding of professional art work;
  • Developing an appreciation for the arts within the context of quality of life.

Beliefs about the importance of arts education for ALL students:

  • the arts teach children how to think in the ways they learn best (i.e., through direct physical experiences of movement, sound, and images, allowing them to respond in the same concrete ways, while at the same time conceptualizing, solving complex problems, making decisions, and thinking creatively);
  • arts education provides natural learning opportunities for students with all styles of learning and all kinds of intelligences;
  • the kind of thinking fostered by education in the arts is in increasing demand in a complex, rapidly changing, diverse, and media-oriented world;
  • the arts teach students to know themselves and their cultural heritage and to better understand and appreciate others living in different times, places, and cultures;
  • study in the arts fosters self-esteem in students by developing valuable character traits that include self-discipline, perseverance, risk-taking, cooperation, and pride in accomplishment;
  • arts education is the best way to help students to effectively blend intellect with emotion (i.e., the arts offer the opportunity for “peak experiences” not easily achieved in other disciplines);
  • music, art, drama, and dance are a natural phenomenon, universally present in all human societies, past and present; and it is through this contextual experience of the arts that students develop an understanding for the world and know what it is to be fully human.

Art Curriculum Standards

Music Curriculum Standards

Physical Education

Paramount to physical education at SAS is promoting lifelong physical activity as fundamental to social, emotional, and physical well-being.

By exposing students to a wide variety of individual and collaborative physical activities, the physical education program offers students opportunities to develop interests and set personal goals, while experiencing inherent challenge and enjoyment.

The physical education program also provides an authentic context for students to learn and exhibit the SAS core values of compassion, honesty, fairness, respect, and responsibility.

Physical Education Curriculum Standards

Counseling

Counseling services are an integral part of the elementary school. Counselors take a proactive, child-centered, and developmental approach in working with students, parents, and teachers. Our counselors teach character education lessons, provide individual and family counseling, facilitate small group workshops for students, lead parent coffees, conduct entry and exit family transitional programs, and coordinate student services in the school.

MISSION

The elementary school counseling program is committed to promoting the development of responsible global citizens by nurturing the academic, social, and emotional growth of all students.

PHILOSOPHY

The elementary school counselors at Singapore American School believe:

  • All students can be successful when provided support appropriate to their individual needs
  • The school counselor’s role is to advocate for every student
  • Our role is to promote and inspire a healthy well-balanced lifestyle
  • In celebrating diversity and recognizing the dignity and self worth of each student
  • Children in the elementary years are in stages of rapid growth and development and require unique academic, social, and emotional support
  • Self advocacy and resiliency are skills that can be taught and nurtured

Library

The library works collaboratively with teachers to support the curriculum and to encourage a lifelong love of reading. The collection offers a diverse range of quality and engaging print and electronic items. Regular classes and flexible classes ensure that literature appreciation, information literacy, and curriculum objectives are met for all students. Special events, such as the Parent-Teacher Association-sponsored authors and illustrators-in-residence program, as well as division-wide literacy events, encourage our learners to celebrate and enjoy all things book-related.

Service Learning

Putting others before themselves from a young age, SAS students take part in service learning opportunities in school, in their community, and in regional and global communities. They find meaning in benefiting others when they brainstorm, research, interview, plan activities, build connections, and contribute to communities’ areas of need.

Service learning is integrated into our curriculum. Students are also encouraged to initiate their own service learning projects to work on valuable life skills and towards becoming responsible, enlightened, and reflective global citizens.

K-12 Service-Learning Standards and Indicators

Field Trips

During the school year, approximately four field trips are scheduled to supplement and extend learning presented in the classroom. Any expenses for these excursions are included in your child's tuition. Parents will be asked to complete and sign a permission slip for each field trip. Current medical information and passport numbers are required on the form.

After School Activities

Elementary Activities and Athletics

Elementary students at SAS can choose from a wide range of organized after-school activities. Parents can select from a wide assortment of classes such as language, recreation, music, performing arts, arts and crafts, mind stretch, computers, and technology.

  • Classes are held once a week from 3:15 p.m. to 4:15 p.m.
  • There are three terms: fall, winter, and spring.
  • Fees and classes vary based on term length and activity.
  • Detailed information will be sent via email at the beginning of each term.

EASA Transportation EASA Testimonials

Grade 4

Grade Four Subjects and Curriculum

SUBJECT

CURRICULUM OVERVIEW

Reading and Language Arts

Building a good reading life, launching writing workshop personal narratives, launching writing workshop with realistic fiction, Reading: Following Characters Into Meaning, opinion writing: personal essay, navigating nonfiction with critical literacy, nonfiction text structures, informational writing, Reading To Grow Big Ideas book clubs, writing: poetry, nonfiction research projects: reading and writing, the genre of test reading, and reading: social issues book clubs.

Mathematics

Multiplication and division: meanings and facts, generate and analyze patterns, place value, addition and subtraction of whole numbers, number sense: multiplying by one-digit numbers, number sense: multiplying by two-digit numbers, developing fluency: multiplying by two-digit numbers, number sense: dividing by one-digit divisors, developing fluency: dividing by one-digit divisors, fraction equivalence and ordering, adding and subtracting fractions and mixed numbers with like denominators, extending fraction concepts, measurement units and conversions, solving measurement problems, lines, angles, and shapes.

Science

Magnetism and electricity, environments, and the water planet.

Social Studies

Endangered environments, and environmental action.

World Language

Spanish
Level 1: Todo Sobre Mi, Mi Familia, Mi Casa Y Mi Comunidad, Mi Escuela Y Mis Amigos, y Mis Vacaciones.
Level 2: Picasso, Paella, Viaje a Barcelona, y Futbol.

Mandarin
Level 1: All About Me, My Family and Me, What I Do With My Friends, and What I Do In School.
Level 2: More About Me, More About Family, Home Sweet Home, and How I Get Around.
Level 3: My School, Let's Eat, My Community, and Travel.
Level 4: Mooncake, Mulan, Bring Home Happiness, and Terracotta Warriors.

Art

Ceramics, drawing, painting, sculpture, printmaking, and textiles.

Music

Rhythm and beat, melody, style and form, harmony and texture, performance practices, and gamelan.

Physical Education

Individual and team activities, basketball, soccer, gymnastics, aquatics, fitness, floor hockey, rhythms, dance, movement, climbing, cooperative games, and net skills.

Counseling

Anxiety and stress, managing anger, conflict resolution, bullying, digital citizenship, cyber bullying, rational versus irrational thinking, self-esteem, problem solving, critical thinking, friendship, rejection, and global citizenship.

Library

Library-specific skills (how to find, use, and share information), digital citizenship, literature appreciation, and support for grade-level curricular areas.

Service Learning

Fourth-grade students engage in innovative projects for experiential learning, and integrating the Reading and Language Arts, science, and social studies curricular units with a sequence of outdoor experiences.

Field Trips

Field trips for grade four students are the S.E.A. Aquarium, Sungei Buloh Nature Reserve, MacRitchie Reservoir, Upper Seletar Reservoir, Raffles Marina, and the Singapore Chinese Orchestra.

Grade Four Curriculum Vision and Standards

Reading and Language Arts

Literacy learning and habits begin in the home and community. Singapore American School builds on these foundations to nurture and develop effective readers, writers, and communicators.

To promote the development of the literate student, we advocate a student‐centered, interactive approach that emphasizes listening, speaking, reading, and writing. A diversity of genres, time periods, and perspectives provides opportunities for students to experience, interpret, and use language in meaningful contexts for a variety of purposes and audiences.

Ultimately, our goal is to empower our students to be critical and creative thinkers who can reflect, adapt, and flourish in a changing world as competent and positive communicators throughout their lives.

Reading and Language Arts Curriculum Standards

Mathematics

It is a core mission of Singapore American School that every student be prepared to be a confident user of mathematics, a powerful quantitative thinker, and a productive problem solver. This mission can only be achieved within a mathematics program that balances mathematical skills, concepts, and applications with instructional practices that emphasize explanation, justification, and number sense. That is, SAS envisions in every classroom where mathematics is learned, a mathematics program built on teaching and learning that actively engages students in learning experiences that stimulate curiosity, inquiry, enjoyment, and deep understanding of the mathematics outlined in the Common Core.

Our vision is one of students consistently being expected and supported to:

  • persevere with solving interesting problems,
  • reason abstractly and quantitatively,
  • construct viable arguments,
  • critique the reasoning of others, and
  • model with mathematics.

Our vision is one of teachers consistently and expertly:

  • responding to most students answers with “why?”, “how do you know that?”, or “can you explain your thinking?”;
  • crafting instruction around powerful tasks that promote reasoning and problem solving and promote productive struggle;
  • eliciting, valuing, and celebrating alternative approaches to solving mathematics problems so that students are taught that mathematics is a sense-making process for understanding why and not memorizing the right procedure to get the one right answer;
  • using and connecting multiple representations–for example, models, diagrams, number lines, tables and graphs, as well as symbols–of all mathematical work to support the visualization of skills and concepts;
  • taking every opportunity to develop number sense by asking for, and justifying, estimates, mental calculations and equivalent forms of numbers;
  • creating language-rich classrooms that emphasize terminology, vocabulary, explanations, and solutions in the context of meaningful discourse among students;
  • embedding the mathematical content scholars are learning in contexts to connect the mathematics to the real world; and
  • devoting the last five minutes of every lesson to some form of formative assessment, for example, an exit slip, to gather, and then use, evidence of student thinking and understanding.

This vision of teaching and learning in elaborated upon in the following ten Characteristics of Effective Instruction in Mathematics.

Effective mathematics instruction is thoughtfully planned. An effective lesson provides multiple opportunities for student learning and must be carefully planned. The days of minimalist lesson plans such as “examples one and two on page 154” or “lesson 6-4: vocabulary, discussion, practice, homework” do not adequately reflect the demands and expectations teachers face. Rather, prior to teaching a lesson, teachers should be empowered and expected to:

  • have a clear understanding of the specific learning expectations for their students and how and where these expectations fit in to the larger instructional unit;
  • select and try out the set of problems, tasks and/or activities that support the specific learning expectations;
  • identify a set of key questions and considered the required explanations that support the problems, tasks and/or activities to be used;
  • consider the likely errors that students are likely to make and misconceptions that students are likely to have, and prepare strategies that address these errors and misconceptions; and
  • identify the means by which the degree of student learning will be determined.

The heart of effective mathematics instruction is an emphasis on problem solving, reasoning, and sense-making. Nearly every survey of business and industry addresses the critical need for current and prospective workers to be able to reason, question, and solve problems. Thus the focus on problem solving as the heart of mathematics and on inquiry as the heart of science are societal, as well as educational, imperatives. However, beyond just rhetoric, effective instruction must consistently include opportunities for students to formulate questions and problems, make hypotheses and conjectures, gather and analyze data, and draw and justify conclusions. This is why students in effective classrooms regularly encounter questions like “why?”, “how do you know?”, and “can you explain that?”

Effective mathematics instruction balances and blends conceptual understanding and procedural skills. Real mathematical literacy is as much about understanding the concept of division, knowing when and why to divide, and being able to interpret the meaning of a remainder as it is about merely knowing how to use an algorithm to find a quotient. Too often, the focus of instruction is on the one right way to get a single right answer, at the expense of understanding why this is the appropriate mathematics, how it relates to other mathematics, and when such mathematics should be used. For this reason, effective instruction balances a focus on conceptual understanding (e.g., the meaning of area and perimeter and how they are related) with a focus on procedural skill (e.g., how to find the area and perimeter of plane figures).

Effective mathematics instruction relies on alternative approaches and multiple representations. At nearly any moment in nearly any class, we know that many students are not processing the content in the way the teacher is processing the content. For example the teacher may be visualizing “three-quarters” as three out of four slices of a small pizza, while one student “sees” three quarters or 75 cents, another student “sees” three red balloons out of a total of four, and still another student “sees” three-quarters of an inch on a ruler. Effective instruction recognizes that students conceptualize mathematical and scientific concepts in different, but often equally appropriate, ways. Effective instruction incorporates deliberate attention to such multiple representations, including concrete materials, and to alternative approaches to accommodate the diversity of learning styles within every class.

Effective mathematics instruction uses contexts and connections to engage students and increase the relevance of what is being learned. Teachers have a choice. They can rely on abstractions and rules that are rarely connected to realistic situations or common contexts and ask students the equivalent of finding F when S = 81 in the function F = 4 (S – 65) + 10. Or teachers can take these abstractions and embed them in realistic contexts and problem situations that bring the mathematics and science to life. In this example, telling students that the speeding fine in a particular state is “$4 for every mile per hour over the 65 mph speed limit plus a $10 handling fee for the Police Department” and asking first for the fine when a driver is going 81 mph and then determining a driver’s speed if they received a fine of $102. Then consider using a graphing calculator or computer software to represent this function in a table and a graph as well as symbolically, showing where and how the “point” (81, 74) exists within each representation.

Effective mathematics instruction provides frequent opportunities for students to communicate their reasoning and engage in productive discourse. The active, engaged, thinking classroom is a classroom of questions and answers, of inquiries and explanations, of conjectures and justifications, and of written and oral discourse. We know that writing helps to clarify our thinking and that teaching another strengthens our own learning. That is why effective classrooms are often vibrant environments of student communication in the form of explanations, dialogues, arguments, and presentations.

Effective mathematics instruction incorporates on-going cumulative review. Almost no one masters something new after one or two lessons and one or two homework assignments. That is why one of the most effective strategies for fostering mastery and retention of critical skills is daily, cumulative review at the beginning of every lesson. Teachers do this as part of a daily warm-up or as “bell-work” that focuses on recent instruction or as a daily “mini-quiz” containing four to six problems that keep skills sharp, review vocabulary, and reinforce conceptual understanding.

Effective mathematics instruction employs technology to enhance learning. Calculators, computers, and scientific instruments are increasingly important tools for supporting learning and making instruction more relevant. Graphing calculators that link symbolic, tabular, and graphical representations of functions help students develop critical understandings of algebra. Geometry software and scientific simulation software enable students to create mathematical and scientific environments and analyze the impact of changes in selected conditions. Electronic blackboards significantly enhance the impact of such software. But it is not the mere use of technology that enhances learning, any more than it is the use of manipulative materials that “teach”. Rather, it is the appropriate, planned, and deliberate use of technology to support the development of mathematical understanding that impacts learning.

Effective mathematics instruction uses multiple forms of assessment and uses the results of this assessment to adjust instruction. When our focus shifts from what was taught to what was learned, the focus must also shift to assessing what has been learned. While tests and quizzes will continue to be important components of assessment, it is how the results of these quizzes and tests are used to assess the impact of teaching, plan reteaching, prepare individual instruction, and design additional diagnoses that translates assessment into better teaching and learning. In addition, effective teachers use observations, class work, projects, and similar vehicles to monitor the quality of learning. Finally, the results of a carefully aligned system of unit tests and end of grade and end of course assessments are regularly analyzed to make curricular and instructional modifications.

Effective teachers of mathematics reflect on their teaching, individually and collaboratively, and make revisions to enhance student learning. Finally, effective teachers replay their instruction, reflect on what appeared to work and what was more problematic, and examine student responses and work as part of an ongoing cycle of plan–teach–reflect–refine and plan all over again. Moreover, effective teachers work collaboratively with colleagues on issues of the mathematics embedded in the instructional tasks that are used, the pedagogical features of the instruction we conduct, and the student learning evidenced by analysis of student work.

Mathematics Curriculum Standards

Envision Mathematics Overview for elementary parents

Mathematics Materials Review for elementary parents

Science

Singapore American School science program emphasizes an inquiry‐based, hands‐on, real world approach that makes connections across disciplines and leads to student understanding of essential concepts, skills, and processes.

To encourage responsible and ethical citizens in a global community, the SAS science program promotes the SAS core values and scientific habits of mind: curiosity, passion, perseverance, care, and action.

The science program recognizes that scientific problem solving, critical and creative thinking skills, and collaboration prepares students for an ever‐changing world.

Science Curriculum Standards

Social Studies

The purpose of social studies is to prepare students to become compassionate, responsible, and effective citizens of their local and global communities.

Powerful learning in social studies encourages students to think critically and consider multiple perspectives as they interpret the world and develop understandings that endure beyond the classroom.

Through systematic inquiry into meaningful and relevant content that integrates civics, economics, geography, and history, our goal is to empower students with:

  • the knowledge of the past to understand the present and plan for the future the skills to make educated and ethical decisions
  • the dispositions to innovate, collaborate and contribute to a just and sustainable world

Social Studies Curriculum Standards

World Language

Language and communication are at the heart of the human experience and individual identity. Therefore, it is imperative that all students have opportunities to become equipped both linguistically and culturally in other languages to establish and maintain relationships, and to function confidently within a global society.

We believe that the primary purpose of learning another language is to develop the ability to communicate effectively in real-life contexts. We recognize that a communicative approach, that meaningfully integrates authentic resources and technology, is essential to successful language acquisition.

We also believe that the learning of other languages:

  • develops students’ appreciation of cultural diversity, understanding of the connection between language and culture, and awareness of their own linguistic and cultural heritage
  • inspires curiosity and further develops communicative strategies and higher-level thinking skills for life-long language acquisition
  • provides access to new bodies of knowledge and helps students connect this learning to other disciplines

Spanish Curriculum Standards

Chinese Curriculum Standards

Arts

Singapore American School provides a liberal arts education for all students with opportunities for explorations and extensions in a variety of areas. In terms of arts education, SAS believes it is important to regularly provide support within three critical areas:

  1. learning about the arts through development of understanding and skills,
  2. experiencing the creation of the arts through student performances and exhibits; and
  3. appreciating professional arts experiences as an audience member.

In regard to learning about the arts, a quality arts education at SAS provides the following areas of support for all students:

  • Developing skills and techniques that are appropriately challenging within an arts discipline;
  • Understanding the communicative and expressive values of an art form;
  • Experiencing conceptualizations involved in the production of a work of art;
  • Establishing critical and analytical skills related to the quality of an art work;
  • Recognizing the context (e.g., cultural, historical, and political) in which an artwork is created by an artist or group of artists;
  • Appreciating the connections and inter-relatedness of the arts in other disciplines and in the world in which we live.

In regard to experiencing the creation of the arts, a quality arts education at SAS provides the following areas of support for all students:

  • Recognizing the scope and the depth of what is required in the production of a work of art;
  • Responding to the commitment and responsibilities that are required in the production of quality artwork;
  • Experiencing the interaction of a performed or produced work of art and an audience;
  • Developing confidence in one’s self as an expressive communicator.

In regard to appreciating professional arts experiences, a quality arts education provides the following areas of support for all students:

  • Experiencing high quality professional experiences within all of the arts disciplines;
  • Interacting with professional artists (e.g., artists-in-residence and guest speakers) to understand the craft and discipline that is involved at a professional level;
  • Reflecting on one’s own experience and understanding of professional artwork;
  • Developing an appreciation for the arts within the context of quality of life.

Beliefs about the importance of arts education for ALL students:

  • the arts teach children how to think in the ways they learn best (i.e., through direct physical experiences of movement, sound, and images, allowing them to respond in the same concrete ways, while at the same time conceptualizing, solving complex problems, making decisions, and thinking creatively);
  • arts education provides natural learning opportunities for students with all styles of learning and all kinds of intelligences;
  • the kind of thinking fostered by education in the arts is in increasing demand in a complex, rapidly changing, diverse and media-oriented world;
  • the arts teach students to know themselves and their cultural heritage and to better understand and appreciate others living in different times, places, and cultures;
  • study in the arts fosters self-esteem in students by developing valuable character traits that include self-discipline, perseverance, risk-taking, cooperation, and pride in accomplishment;
  • arts education is the best way to help students to effectively blend intellect with emotion (i.e., the arts offer the opportunity for “peak experiences” not easily achieved in other disciplines);
  • music, art, drama, and dance are a natural phenomenon, universally present in all human societies, past and present; and it is through this contextual experience of the arts that students develop an understanding for the world and know what it is to be fully human.

Art Curriculum Standards

Music Curriculum Standards

Physical Education

Paramount to physical education at SAS is promoting lifelong physical activity as fundamental to social, emotional, and physical well-being.

By exposing students to a wide variety of individual and collaborative physical activities, the physical education program offers students opportunities to develop interests and set personal goals, while experiencing inherent challenge and enjoyment.

The physical education program also provides an authentic context for students to learn and exhibit the SAS core values of compassion, honesty, fairness, respect, and responsibility.

Physical Education Curriculum Standards

Counseling

Counseling services are an integral part of the elementary school. Counselors take a proactive, child-centered, and developmental approach in working with students, parents, and teachers. Our counselors teach character education lessons, provide individual and family counseling, facilitate small group workshops for students, lead parent coffees, conduct entry and exit family transitional programs, and coordinate student services in the school.

MISSION

The elementary school counseling program is committed to promoting the development of responsible global citizens by nurturing the academic, social, and emotional growth of all students.

PHILOSOPHY

The elementary school counselors at Singapore American School believe:

  • All students can be successful when provided support appropriate to their individual needs
  • The school counselor’s role is to advocate for every student
  • Our role is to promote and inspire a healthy well-balanced lifestyle
  • In celebrating diversity and recognizing the dignity and self worth of each student
  • Children in the elementary years are in stages of rapid growth and development and require unique academic, social, and emotional support
  • Self advocacy and resiliency are skills that can be taught and nurtured

Library

The library works collaboratively with teachers to support the curriculum and to encourage a lifelong love of reading. The collection offers a diverse range of quality and engaging print and electronic items. Regular classes and flexible classes ensure that literature appreciation, information literacy, and curriculum objectives are met for all students. Special events, such as the Parent-Teacher Association-sponsored authors and illustrators-in-residence program, as well as division-wide literacy events, encourage our learners to celebrate and enjoy all things book-related.

Service Learning

Putting others before themselves from a young age, SAS students take part in service learning opportunities in school, in their community, and in regional and global communities. They find meaning in benefiting others when they brainstorm, research, interview, plan activities, build connections, and contribute to communities’ areas of need.

Service learning is integrated into our curriculum. Students are also encouraged to initiate their own service learning projects to work on valuable life skills and towards becoming responsible, enlightened, and reflective global citizens.

K-12 Service-Learning Standards and Indicators

Field Trips

During the school year, approximately four field trips are scheduled to supplement and extend learning presented in the classroom. Any expenses for these excursions are included in your child's tuition. Parents will be asked to complete and sign a permission slip for each field trip. Current medical information and passport numbers are required on the form.

After School Activities

Elementary Activities and Athletics

Elementary students at SAS can choose from a wide range of organized after-school activities. Parents can select from a wide assortment of classes such as language, recreation, music, performing arts, arts and crafts, mind stretch, computers, and technology.

  • Classes are held once a week from 3:15 p.m. to 4:15 p.m.
  • There are three terms: fall, winter, and spring.
  • Fees and classes vary based on term length and activity.
  • Detailed information will be sent via email at the beginning of each term.

EASA Transportation EASA Testimonials

Grade 5

Grade Five Subjects and Curriculum

SUBJECT

CURRICULUM OVERVIEW

Reading and Language Arts

Raising the level of narrative writing, launching fifth grade readers: digital and print readers, building agency (independence to follow characters, personal and persuasive essay writing), nonfiction reading (text structures, informational writing, fantasy writing, fantasy reading, the genre of test reading, research-based argument essay, historical fiction reading), informational writing research, and nonfiction research (reading and an independent writing project).

Mathematics

Place values, adding and subtracting decimals, multiplying whole numbers, dividing by one-digit divisors, dividing by two-digit divisors, multiplying decimals, dividing decimals, mumerical expressions, patterns, and relationships, adding and subtracting fractions, adding and subtracting mixed numbers, multiplying and dividing fractions and mixed numbers, volume of solids, units of measure, data, classifying plane figures, and coordinate geometry.

Science

Landforms, mixtures and solutions, and living systems.

Social Studies

Formation of a nation, multiple perspectives, immigration push and pull factors, war and conflict, and significant person investigation.

World Language

Spanish
Level 1: Todo Sobre Mi, Mi Familia, Mi Casa Y Mi Comunidad, Mi Escuela Y Mis Amigos, y Mis Vacaciones.
Level 2: Picasso, Paella, Viaje a Barcelona, y Futbol.

Mandarin
Level 1: All About Me, My Family and Me, What I do with My Friends, and What I Do In School.
Level 2: More About Me, More About Family, Home Sweet Home, and How I Get Around.
Level 3: My School, Let's Eat, My Community, and Travel.
Level 4: Mooncake, Mulan, Bring Home Happiness, and Terracotta Warriors.

Art

Ceramics, drawing, painting, sculpture, printmaking, and textiles.

Music

Rhythm and beat, melody, style and form, harmony and texture, performance practices, and gamelan.

Physical Education

Individual, team activities, basketball, soccer, gymnastics, aquatics, fitness, floor hockey, rhythms, dance, movement, climbing, cooperative games, and net skills.

Counseling

Anxiety and stress, managing anger, conflict resolution, bullying, digital citizenship: E-volve & Twalkers, rational vs. irrational thinking, self-esteem, problem solving and critical thinking, friendship and rejection, and global citizenship.

Library

Library-specific skills (how to find, use, and share information), digital citizenship, literature appreciation, and support for grade-level curricular areas.

Service Learning

Fifth-grade students are involved in elder care, teaching arts and crafts to the elderly at Christalite Methodist Home.

Field Trips

Field trips for grade five students are visits to the Singapore Science Centre, the National Museum of Singapore, Jurong East Swimming Complex, and Images of Singapore LIVE- Sentosa.

Grade Five Curriculum Vision and Standards

Reading and Language Arts

Literacy learning and habits begin in the home and community. Singapore American School builds on these foundations to nurture and develop effective readers, writers, and communicators.

To promote the development of the literate student, we advocate a student‐centered, interactive approach that emphasizes listening, speaking, reading, and writing. A diversity of genres, time periods, and perspectives provides opportunities for students to experience, interpret, and use language in meaningful contexts for a variety of purposes and audiences.

Ultimately, our goal is to empower our students to be critical and creative thinkers who can reflect, adapt, and flourish in a changing world as competent and positive communicators throughout their lives.

Reading and Language Arts Curriculum Standards

Mathematics

It is a core mission of Singapore American School that every student be prepared to be a confident user of mathematics, a powerful quantitative thinker, and a productive problem solver. This mission can only be achieved within a mathematics program that balances mathematical skills, concepts, and applications, with instructional practices that emphasize explanation, justification and number sense. That is, SAS envisions in every classroom where mathematics is learned a mathematics program built on teaching and learning that actively engages students in learning experiences that stimulate curiosity, inquiry, enjoyment, and deep understanding of the mathematics outlined in the Common Core.

Our vision is one of students consistently being expected and supported to:

  • persevere with solving interesting problems,
  • reason abstractly and quantitatively,
  • construct viable arguments,
  • critique the reasoning of others, and
  • model with mathematics.

Our vision is one of teachers consistently and expertly:

  • responding to most students' answers with “why?”, “how do you know that?”, or “can you explain your thinking?”;
  • crafting instruction around powerful tasks that promote reasoning, problem solving, and productive struggle;
  • eliciting, valuing, and celebrating alternative approaches to solving mathematics problems so that students are taught that mathematics is a sense-making process for understanding why and not memorizing the right procedure to get the one right answer;
  • using and connecting multiple representations – for example, models, diagrams, number lines, tables and graphs, as well as symbols – of all mathematical work to support the visualization of skills and concepts;
  • taking every opportunity to develop number sense by asking for, and justifying, estimates, mental calculations and equivalent forms of numbers;
  • creating language-rich classrooms that emphasize terminology, vocabulary, explanations and solutions in the context of meaningful discourse among students;
  • embedding the mathematical content scholars are learning in contexts to connect the mathematics to the real world; and
  • devoting the last five minutes of every lesson to some form of formative assessment, for example, an exit slip, to gather, and then use, evidence of student thinking and understanding.

This vision of teaching and learning is elaborated upon in the following ten Characteristics of Effective Instruction in Mathematics.

Effective mathematics instruction is thoughtfully planned. An effective lesson provides multiple opportunities for student learning and must be carefully planned. The days of minimalist lesson plans like “examples 1 and 2 on page 154” or “lesson 6-4: vocabulary, discussion, practice, homework” do not adequately reflect the demands and expectations teachers face. Rather, prior to teaching a lesson, teachers should be empowered and expected to:

  • have a clear understanding of the specific learning expectations for their students and how and where these expectations fit in to the larger instructional unit;
  • select and try out the set of problems, tasks and/or activities that support the specific learning expectations;
  • identify a set of key questions and considered the required explanations that support the problems, tasks and/or activities to be used;
  • consider the likely errors that students are likely to make and misconceptions that students are likely to have, and prepare strategies that address these errors and misconceptions; and
  • identify the means by which the degree of student learning will be determined.

The heart of effective mathematics instruction is an emphasis on problem solving, reasoning, and sense-making. Nearly every survey of business and industry addresses the critical need for current and prospective workers to be able to reason, question, and solve problems. Thus the focus on problem solving as the heart of mathematics and on inquiry as the heart of science are societal, as well as educational, imperatives. However, beyond just rhetoric, effective instruction must consistently include opportunities for students to formulate questions and problems, make hypotheses and conjectures, gather and analyze data, and draw and justify conclusions. This is why students in effective classrooms regularly encounter questions like “why?”, “how do you know?”, and “can you explain that?”

Effective mathematics instruction balances and blends conceptual understanding and procedural skills. Real mathematical literacy is as much about understanding the concept of division, knowing when and why to divide, and being able to interpret the meaning of a remainder as it is about merely knowing how to use an algorithm to find a quotient. Too often, the focus of instruction is on the one right way to get a single right answer, at the expense of understanding why this is the appropriate mathematics, how it relates to other mathematics, and when such mathematics should be used. For this reason, effective instruction balances a focus on conceptual understanding (e.g., the meaning of area and perimeter and how they are related) with a focus on procedural skill (e.g., how to find the area and perimeter of plane figures).

Effective mathematics instruction relies on alternative approaches and multiple representations. At nearly any moment in nearly any class, we know that many students are not processing the content in the way the teacher is processing the content. For example the teacher may be visualizing “three-quarters” as three out of four slices of a small pizza, while one student “sees” three quarters or 75 cents, another student “sees” three red balloons out of a total of four, and still another student “sees” three-quarters of an inch on a ruler. Effective instruction recognizes that students conceptualize mathematical and scientific concepts in different, but often equally appropriate, ways. Effective instruction incorporates deliberate attention to such multiple representations, including concrete materials, and to alternative approaches to accommodate the diversity of learning styles within every class.

Effective mathematics instruction uses contexts and connections to engage students and increase the relevance of what is being learned. Teachers have a choice. They can rely on abstractions and rules that are rarely connected to realistic situations or common contexts and ask students the equivalent of finding F when S = 81 in the function F = 4 (S – 65) + 10. Or teachers can take these abstractions and embed them in realistic contexts and problem situations that bring the mathematics and science to life. In this example, telling students that the speeding fine in a particular state is “$4 for every mile per hour over the 65 mph speed limit plus a $10 handling fee for the Police Department” and asking first for the fine when a driver is going 81 mph and then determining a driver’s speed if they received a fine of $102. Then consider using a graphing calculator or computer software to represent this function in a table and a graph as well as symbolically, showing where and how the “point” (81, 74) exists within each representation.

Effective mathematics instruction provides frequent opportunities for students to communicate their reasoning and engage in productive discourse. The active, engaged, thinking classroom is a classroom of questions and answers, of inquiries and explanations, of conjectures and justifications, and of written and oral discourse. We know that writing helps to clarify our thinking and that teaching another strengthens our own learning. That is why effective classrooms are often vibrant environments of student communication in the form of explanations, dialogues, arguments, and presentations.

Effective mathematics instruction incorporates on-going cumulative review. Almost no one masters something new after one or two lessons and one or two homework assignments. That is why one of the most effective strategies for fostering mastery and retention of critical skills is daily, cumulative review at the beginning of every lesson. Teachers do this as part of a daily warm-up or as “bell-work” that focuses on recent instruction or as a daily “mini-quiz” containing four to six problems that keep skills sharp, review vocabulary, and reinforce conceptual understanding.

Effective mathematics instruction employs technology to enhance learning. Calculators, computers, and scientific instruments are increasingly important tools for supporting learning and making instruction more relevant. Graphing calculators that link symbolic, tabular, and graphical representations of functions help students develop critical understandings of algebra. Geometry software and scientific simulation software enable students to create mathematical and scientific environments and analyze the impact of changes in selected conditions. Electronic blackboards significantly enhance the impact of such software. But it is not the mere use of technology that enhances learning, any more than it is the use of manipulative materials that “teach”. Rather, it is the appropriate, planned, and deliberate use of technology to support the development of mathematical understanding that impacts learning.

Effective mathematics instruction uses multiple forms of assessment and uses the results of this assessment to adjust instruction. When our focus shifts from what was taught to what was learned, the focus must also shift to assessing what has been learned. While tests and quizzes will continue to be important components of assessment, it is how the results of these quizzes and tests are used to assess the impact of teaching, plan reteaching, prepare individual instruction and design additional diagnoses that translates assessment into better teaching and learning. In addition, effective teachers use observations, class work, projects, and similar vehicles to monitor the quality of learning. Finally, the results of a carefully aligned system of unit tests and end of grade and end of course assessments are regularly analyzed to make curricular and instructional modifications.

Effective teachers of mathematics reflect on their teaching, individually and collaboratively, and make revisions to enhance student learning. Finally, effective teachers replay their instruction, reflect on what appeared to work and what was more problematic, and examine student responses and work as part of an ongoing cycle of plan–teach–reflect–refine and plan all over again. Moreover, effective teachers work collaboratively with colleagues on issues of the mathematics embedded in the instructional tasks that are used, the pedagogical features of the instruction we conduct, and the student learning evidenced by analysis of student work.

Science

Singapore American School's science program emphasizes an inquiry‐based, hands‐on, real world approach that makes connections across disciplines and leads to student understanding of essential concepts, skills, and processes.

To encourage responsible and ethical citizens in a global community, the SAS science program promotes the SAS core values and scientific habits of mind: curiosity, passion, perseverance, care, and action.

The science program recognizes that scientific problem solving, critical and creative thinking skills, and collaboration prepares students for an ever‐changing world.

Science Curriculum Standards

Social Studies

The purpose of social studies is to prepare students to become compassionate, responsible, and effective citizens of their local and global communities.

Powerful learning in social studies encourages students to think critically and consider multiple perspectives as they interpret the world and develop understandings that endure beyond the classroom.

Through systematic inquiry into meaningful and relevant content that integrates civics, economics, geography, and history, our goal is to empower students with:

  • the knowledge of the past to understand the present and plan for the future the skills to make educated and ethical decisions
  • the dispositions to innovate, collaborate, and contribute to a just and sustainable world

Social Studies Curriculum Standards

World Language

Language and communication are at the heart of the human experience and individual identity. Therefore, it is imperative that all students have opportunities to become equipped both linguistically and culturally in other languages to establish and maintain relationships, and to function confidently within a global society.

We believe that the primary purpose of learning another language is to develop the ability to communicate effectively in real-life contexts. We recognize that a communicative approach, that meaningfully integrates authentic resources and technology, is essential to successful language acquisition.

We also believe that the learning of other languages:

  • develops students’ appreciation of cultural diversity, understanding of the connection between language and culture, and awareness of their own linguistic and cultural heritage
  • inspires curiosity and further develops communicative strategies and higher-level thinking skills for life-long language acquisition
  • provides access to new bodies of knowledge and helps students connect this learning to other disciplines

Spanish Curriculum Standards

Chinese Curriculum Standards

Arts

Singapore American School provides a liberal arts education for all students with opportunities for explorations and extensions in a variety of areas. In terms of arts education, SAS believes it is important to regularly provide support within three critical areas:

  1. learning about the arts through development of understanding and skills,
  2. experiencing the creation of the arts through student performances and exhibits; and
  3. appreciating professional arts experiences as an audience member.

In regard to learning about the arts, a quality arts education at SAS provides the following areas of support for all students:

  • Developing skills and techniques that are appropriately challenging within an arts discipline;
  • Understanding the communicative and expressive values of an art form;
  • Experiencing conceptualizations involved in the production of a work of art;
  • Establishing critical and analytical skills related to the quality of an artwork;
  • Recognizing the context (e.g., cultural, historical, and political) in which an artwork is created by an artist or group of artists;
  • Appreciating the connections and inter-relatedness of the arts in other disciplines and in the world in which we live.

In regard to experiencing the creation of the arts, a quality arts education at SAS provides the following areas of support for all students:

  • Recognizing the scope and the depth of what is required in the production of a work of art;
  • Responding to the commitment and responsibilities that are required in the production of quality artwork;
  • Experiencing the interaction of a performed or produced work of art and an audience;
  • Developing confidence in one’s self as an expressive communicator.

In regard to appreciating professional arts experiences, a quality arts education provides the following areas of support for all students:

  • Experiencing high quality professional experiences within all of the arts disciplines;
  • Interacting with professional artists (e.g., artists-in-residence and guest speakers) to understand the craft and discipline that is involved at a professional level;
  • Reflecting on one’s own experience and understanding of professional artwork;
  • Developing an appreciation for the arts within the context of quality of life.

Beliefs about the importance of arts education for ALL students:

  • the arts teach children how to think in the ways they learn best (i.e., through direct physical experiences of movement, sound, and images, allowing them to respond in the same concrete ways, while at the same time conceptualizing, solving complex problems, making decisions, and thinking creatively);
  • arts education provides natural learning opportunities for students with all styles of learning and all kinds of intelligences;
  • the kind of thinking fostered by education in the arts is in increasing demand in a complex, rapidly changing, diverse, and media-oriented world;
  • the arts teach students to know themselves and their cultural heritage and to better understand and appreciate others living in different times, places, and cultures;
  • study in the arts fosters self-esteem in students by developing valuable character traits that include self-discipline, perseverance, risk-taking, cooperation, and pride in accomplishment;
  • arts education is the best way to help students to effectively blend intellect with emotion (i.e., the arts offer the opportunity for “peak experiences” not easily achieved in other disciplines);
  • music, art, drama, and dance are a natural phenomenon, universally present in all human societies, past and present; and it is through this contextual experience of the arts that students develop an understanding for the world and know what it is to be fully human.

Art Curriculum Standards

Music Curriculum Standards

Physical Education

Paramount to physical education at SAS is promoting lifelong physical activity as fundamental to social, emotional, and physical well-being.

By exposing students to a wide variety of individual and collaborative physical activities, the physical education program offers students opportunities to develop interests and set personal goals, while experiencing inherent challenge and enjoyment.

The physical education program also provides an authentic context for students to learn and exhibit the SAS core values of compassion, honesty, fairness, respect, and responsibility.

Physical Education Curriculum Standards

Counseling

Counseling services are an integral part of the elementary school. Counselors take a proactive, child-centered, and developmental approach in working with students, parents, and teachers. Our counselors teach character education lessons, provide individual and family counseling, facilitate small group workshops for students, lead parent coffees, conduct entry and exit family transitional programs, and coordinate student services in the school.

MISSION

The elementary school counseling program is committed to promoting the development of responsible global citizens by nurturing the academic, social, and emotional growth of all students.

PHILOSOPHY

The elementary school counselors at Singapore American School believe:

  • All students can be successful when provided support appropriate to their individual needs
  • The school counselor’s role is to advocate for every student
  • Our role is to promote and inspire a healthy well-balanced lifestyle
  • In celebrating diversity and recognizing the dignity and self worth of each student
  • Children in the elementary years are in stages of rapid growth and development and require unique academic, social, and emotional support
  • Self advocacy and resiliency are skills that can be taught and nurtured

Library

The library works collaboratively with teachers to support the curriculum and to encourage a lifelong love of reading. The collection offers a diverse range of quality and engaging print and electronic items. Regular classes and flexible classes ensure that literature appreciation, information literacy, and curriculum objectives are met for all students. Special events, such as the Parent-Teacher Association-sponsored authors and illustrators-in-residence program, as well as division-wide literacy events, encourage our learners to celebrate and enjoy all things book-related.

Service Learning

Putting others before themselves from a young age, SAS students take part in service learning opportunities in school, in their community, and in regional and global communities. They find meaning in benefiting others when they brainstorm, research, interview, plan activities, build connections, and contribute to communities’ areas of need.

Service learning is integrated into our curriculum. Students are also encouraged to initiate their own service learning projects to work on valuable life skills and towards becoming responsible, enlightened, and reflective global citizens.

K-12 Service-Learning Standards and Indicators

Field Trips

During the school year, approximately four field trips are scheduled to supplement and extend learning presented in the classroom. Any expenses for these excursions are included in your child's tuition. Parents will be asked to complete and sign a permission slip for each field trip. Current medical information and passport numbers are required on the form.

After School Activities

Elementary Activities and Athletics

Elementary students at SAS can choose from a wide range of organized after-school activities. Parents can select from a wide assortment of classes such as language, recreation, music, performing arts, arts and crafts, mind stretch, computers, and technology.

  • Classes are held once a week from 3:15 p.m. to 4:15 p.m.
  • There are three terms: fall, winter, and spring.
  • Fees and classes vary based on term length and activity.
  • Detailed information will be sent via email at the beginning of each term.

EASA Transportation EASA Testimonials

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