Acmetonia Encore Classes

Students explore a variety of media and techniques throughout their experience in the elementary art program. Student projects reflect appropriate grade-level curriculum content, while developing problem-solving and critical thinking skills and fostering creativity.  The curriculum is guided by the Pennsylvania State Standards for the Arts and Humanities and the National Core Arts Standards to promote artistic literacy.

Library (Media Center)
The elementary building contains a separate, well-equipped library. The program offers opportunities for independent reading, research, and study. Library resources are integrated into the language arts curriculum with the classroom teacher. Free time before- and after-school, as well as during the school day, may be used by students to select books for independent reading. These books may be signed out for a week at a time. 

Physical Education
All students are required to take physical education classes. Student participation is based upon individual abilities. Adaptive physical education is available for those students who medically or physically warrant this program. All students are required to wear appropriate gym clothing while taking physical education classes. This clothing includes soft-soled tennis shoes, hard-soled or leather-soled shoes are not acceptable due to safety considerations.  A primary component of the physical education course is the Presidential Fitness Program. Students participate in the components of this program over the course of the school year 

STEAM Education
Acmetonia's STEAM Education program is designed to integrate Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Mathematics in the classroom. The course is an engineering-based learning class that includes applications of science, technology, and mathematics.  Through student application of critical thinking, communication skills, collaboration, and creativity, the lessons allow students to articulate a complex idea, apply systems and models from one application to another, understand how to deconstruct and construct things of significance, and internalize a skill to the point of transparency.  The class will continue to build on STEAM learning throughout the District. 

Allegheny Valley believes that elementary education should coordinate learning through play and exploration. Taking that statement another step further, helps understand the integration of technology into the elementary levels.  Upper elementary students leverage technology to create their own video games using Bloxels, build air quality monitors called SPECKLEs, and explore coding through activities.  In addition to a host of other projects, the students collaborate with their classmates and teachers using Google Classroom to bring connection and relevance to their learning.  Teachers are also beginning to implement Common Sense Media, a program that helps students navigate what it means to be a productive digital citizen.  Primary students hone their technology skills in the STEAM space, explore career paths on iPads through the ccSpark future ready program, and use digital portfolios through SeeSaw to help them uncover their own learning process while connecting students to their parents, peers, and teachers.

Vocal & Instrumental Music 

Vocal Music 
Studying and performing music helps to promote personal student growth and enhances the quality of student lives.  The elementary music program is organized into three basic experiences: music as an activity, music as a skill, and music as an art.  All students can participate at various levels in musical activities through any or all of these experiences.  All students in kindergarten - grade 6 are required to participate in general music class.  Each classroom in the school attends music once a six-day rotation.  Outside of class, general music students need only to try to be more conscious of the music they experience in their daily lives and to be more aware of the musical elementary of which they have learned in music class.  In addition, all grade 4-6 students have the opportunity to join their grade-level chorus.  There are no auditions for these groups.  As with any performance group, chorus students are expected to practice the music on their own and to participate in all performances. 

Since students can participate at various levels, all students have the opportunity to feel successful in music class and/or chorus. An individual student’s comfort level is always considered when performance-based skills are being assessed. There are some students who are ready and willing to perform in front of a group, however, students who do not feel comfortable doing so, can show their knowledge or skills in other ways such as written assignments or performing with a group. The minimum goal for students is for them to grow up and be responsible consumers of music. The ultimate goal is for students to be active adult participants of music.

Instrumental Music  
In grade 4, students may choose to begin studying wind, brass, and percussion instruments.  These classes are given under the direction of instrumental specialists.  The students in the classes combine to form an elementary band.  The goals of the instrumental program are to encourage students to expand their knowledge of music through playing an instrument and to join together to form an ensemble.  Playing an instrument requires students to learn how to do a number of items at one time, for example read the notes, play the notes, watch the director, listen to the rest of the group, etc. 

Students may start in the program as early as grade 4 or may begin at anytime throughout the time in grades 4-6.  Typically, the students choose the instrument of their liking.  Beginning students will try their instrument of choice until the end of the second nine weeks or at the end of the school year before deciding to opt out of playing.  In other words, beginning students may choose to opt out of the program ONLY at the end of the second nine weeks.  If a student continues, then he/she is to finish out the rest of the school year before opting out.  Students who are in their second or third year of the instrumental program are required to finish out the school year before making the decision to opt out.  Students and parents will sign a commitment form at the beginning of each school year.  The students meet for instruction for twenty minutes per week in small group lessons.  These small groups usually consist of three to six students working together and individually in their lesson books.  In addition, students meet once each week for a full band practice.  It is also expected that students practice their lessons at home.  The instructor recommends that beginners practice 10 to 20 minutes at home each day; second year players practice 20-30 minutes at home each day; and third year players practice 30 minutes or more daily.  Progress reports are sent home every nine weeks to indicate strengths and weaknesses.