Pre-K & Kindergarten
Our schedule includes two math tracks using a Common Core-correlated Singapore Math-based program with an option for Regents Algebra. In addition, we extend the work with hands-on materials for solidifying abstract concepts such as integers and algebra. Our science program uses Project-Based Inquiry Science in a two-year rotation of Earth Science and Living Environment.
Additional subjects include an exploration of history and social studies using the framework of a two-year Big History course, Hero’s Journey (based on the work of Joseph Campbell), permaculture, music, Spanish, and language arts taught by award-winning author, Kelly Adams (aka K.L. Going.) Students also select electives that match their individual interests.
The sophisticated work we do at Homestead Junior High prepares students for college course offerings through our partnership with SUNY Sullivan. At this age, we focus on refining students’ ability to express themselves through the fine arts, the written and spoken word, and digital content. Embracing the cognitive development of the adolescent mind, our integrative, collaborative, and project-based curriculum prepares students for the challenges and opportunities of the 21st Century.
Connections across subjects are regularly made and discussed, and whenever possible, subjects are integrated under the theme of a common project or area of study.
Annually, our students oversee a book swap and two clothing swaps, which always have a student-created educational focus on waste reduction. In years past, students have taught about waste-free lunches, reusable water bottles, buying in bulk, and they have even raised funds for solar panels on campus. Homestead Junior High runs a chapter of the Earth Guardians, a youth-led environmental group.
We offer an elective program that not only develops skills in a particular area, but sets the groundwork for the micro-business project. Each year, students participate in multiple electives. Elective offerings have included songwriting, ceramics, printmaking, meditation, sewing, jewelry making, advanced fiber arts, martial arts, screenwriting, fiction writing, nutrition/food preparation, and organic farming. Electives are taught by experts in the field.
Students design a business concept and product(s), create a prototype, track production and material costs in a spreadsheet, price the product based on cost analysis, receive feedback from a panel of retail store owners, refine their product and pricing, and then sell the product to the school community. Students also create a brochure which educates the public on their design and material choice, as well as on the cause they have chosen to support with 70% of their profits. In the first three years of the program, junior high schoolers raised over $10,000 for a variety of local and global not-for-profit organizations ranging from advocacy groups to environmental causes.
The Homestead Hurleyville Campus offers a state of the art makerspace complete with 3D print lab, laser cutter, cnc router, a digital media lab, an audio visual lab, a ceramics studio, and a large woodworking shop.