Curriculum & Instruction
Aspire's academic culture is focused around rigor. We define rigor at Aspire as purposeful learning and instruction directed toward objectively high standards and discourse of ideas supported by evidence, which takes shape through our various teaching methods.
All educators at Aspire use a variety of strategies in their teaching practice, depending on how students learn best. Teachers are trained to adapt these strategies to maximize each child's educational experience. The major strategies used include: explicit instruction, academic discourse, group and individualized, problem solving, inquiry, project-based instruction, and apprenticeship.
Clear Learning Goals
To establish a foundation for success, we outline three areas of focus:
1. Basic Skills Master at least grade level competency in the four core subjects: mathematics, science, social studies, and language arts (including reading, writing, listening and speaking)
2. Thinking Skills Be able to apply classroom learning to their real world experiences in a relevant and valuable way, using higher-order thinking skills (including critical thinking, creativity, decision-making, problem solving, reasoning, knowing how to learn)
3. Life Skills Have developed personal qualities of individual responsibility, intellectual curiosity, sociability, self-management, confidence, and integrity.
Aspire expects students to master the Common Core Standards for their grade-specific content.
In addition, each student has a Personal Learning Plan (PLP), developed in collaboration with his/her teacher and parent(s), that outlines the student's specific learning goals each semester.
Aspire’s secondary courses are designed to guarantee that all students will be eligible to apply to the University of California/California State University (UC/CSU) system upon graduation.
A Balanced Curriculum
Aspire combines internally-created curriculum with reliable, nationally-recognized outside sources. Every curricular decision is based on building a clear K-12 system that prioritizes higher-order thinking and life skills.
Cutting-edge data analysis tools empower teachers and leaders to make real-time adjustments to instruction. You have to know where you are to know where you’re going.
Over the years, Aspire has become known for our blended learning approach. We have worked to convert existing schools to an integrated model that focuses on enhancing student achievement and supporting teacher effectiveness within current facilities. It was important for us to build on the model that had already proven successful for Aspire - small group learning. Teachers are able to provide small group instruction, while other students are either working on independent reading/problem solving or working on a computer program.
Read more about blended learning.
Key documents such as School Accountability Report Cards and LEA Plans are available on each school pages
"I appreciate the high expectations and rigor practiced each day to get our students to and through college."
- Aspire Teacher