Core Knowledge® Sequence

The rigorous, content rich curriculum of The Paideia Academy of South Phoenix also incorporates the Core Knowledge® Sequence, which provides a detailed outline of specific knowledge in Language Arts, American and World History, Geography, Visual Arts, Music, Math and Science. It supports the need of K-8 grade students to have a specific, integrated core curriculum in order to help them establish a strong foundation of knowledge, grade by grade. [click here for more Core Knowledge® Sequence information →]


Language Arts

Spalding Writing Road to Reading [click here for more Spalding Writing Road to Reading information →] is a comprehensive K-6 total language arts program, where all elements of the language, are integrated in spelling, writing, and reading fluency and comprehension lessons. It incorporates all the components identified by the National Reading Panel as essential and necessary for success in reading and acquiring early literacy skills required to build a strong foundation for ongoing reading development – phonemic awareness, systematic phonics, high-frequency vocabulary, word meanings and usages, word parts, grammar, composition, literary appreciation, text structure, fluency, listening and reading comprehension.

Junior Great Books curriculum [click here for more Junior Great Books curriculum information →] helps students in grades kindergarten through 8 become independent readers and thinkers ready for the diverse demands of the 21st century. The Great Books® program aligns with the Common Core standards and matches key components of language arts curriculum standards and helps students meet specific performance objectives—which typically include reading comprehension, oral communication, writing, vocabulary, literature, and literary response. The goal of Great Books programs is to instill in adults and children the habits of mind that characterize self-reliant thinkers, readers, and learners. Great Books programs are predicated on the idea that everyone can read and understand excellent literature— literature that has the capacity to engage the whole person, the imagination as well as the intellect.

Shared Inquiry [click here for Shared Inquiry demo →] is a distinctive method of learning in which students are coached to search for answers to fundamental questions raised by a text – fiction or non-fiction. The success of Shared Inquiry depends on a special relationship between the teacher and the group. Shared Inquiry teachers do not impart information or present their own opinions, but guide participants in reaching their own interpretations. They do this by posing thought-provoking questions and by following up purposefully on what participants say. Shared Inquiry also promotes civil discourse. In Shared Inquiry, participants learn to give full consideration to the ideas of others, to weigh the merits of opposing arguments, and to modify their initial opinions as the evidence demands. Students gain experience in communicating complex ideas and in supporting, testing, and expanding their own thoughts. In this way, Shared Inquiry promotes thoughtful dialogue and open debate, preparing students to become able, responsible citizens, and enthusiastic, lifelong readers.



Singapore Math [click here for more Singapore Math information →] The small city-state nation of Singapore produces the highest math achievement in the world. Paideia Academy has adopted the same math curriculum for our students. This math curriculum facilitates student learning of the interaction of numbers by moving from concrete math manipulative activities to number graphs, to abstract equations.  Singapore’s mathematics framework identifies five key aspects of mathematics learning as essential. All five aspects begin at the kindergarten level:

  1. Estimation, mental calculation, arithmetic and algebraic manipulation, and handling of data skills;
  2. Numerical, geometrical, algebraic, and statistical concepts;
  3. Processes, or thinking skills;
  4. Metacognition, the monitoring of one’s own thinking; and
  5. Attitudes regarding mathematics, including interest, confidence, and perseverance.


Full Option Science System (FOSS) [click here for more Full Option Science System (FOSS) information →] Science program is a research-based science curriculum for grades K–8 developed at the Lawrence Hall of Science, University of California at Berkeley. FOSS is also an ongoing research project dedicated to improving the learning and teaching of science. The FOSS program materials are designed to meet the challenge of providing meaningful science education for all students in the Paideia classrooms and to prepare them for life in the 21st century.

Engineering Is Elementary (EiE) [click here for more Engineering Is Elementary (EiE) information →] The Engineering is Elementary® (EiE) project fosters engineering and technological literacy among children. EiE has created a research-based, standards-driven, and classroom-tested curriculum that integrates engineering and technology concepts and skills with elementary science topics. EiE lessons not only promote K-12 science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) learning, but also connect with literacy and social studies.


Storybooks featuring children from a variety of cultures and backgrounds introduce students to an engineering problem. Students are then challenged to solve a problem similar to that faced by the storybook character. Through a hands-on engineering design challenge, students work in teams to apply their knowledge of science and mathematics; use their inquiry and problem-solving skills; and tap their creativity as they design, create, and improve possible solutions. In the end, students realize that everyone can engineer!

The Engineering is Elementary project also helps elementary school educators enhance their understanding of engineering concepts and pedagogy through professional development workshops and resources.


Social Studies

The Core Knowledge® Sequence provides the basis for the History and Geography content taught at The Paideia Academy. The Core Knowledge Sequence provides rich content in both World and American history at each grade level.

In addition, The Paideia Academy implements the recently published Pearson Core Knowledge® History Series [click here for more Pearson Core Knowledge® History Series information →] in grades K-6, edited by Core Knowledge® founder E.D. Hirsch, Jr. and aligned to the Core Knowledge® Sequence for history and geography curriculum.

The Pearson texts are classical in approach with historical epochs serving as the framework for discussions of art, science, literature, philosophy and politics. Key vocabulary is reinforced and students are encouraged to make connections across the disciplines using history as a starting point.

Scholars will possess a solid base of knowledge of both American and World history, understand and will be able to discuss the cause and effect of historical events, and demonstrate an understanding of how historical events have influenced the world. The social studies content is aligned with the Arizona State Academic Standards.


Music, Visual and Performing Arts

The visual arts program at The Paideia Academy follows the Core Knowledge Sequence, which emphasizes an interdisciplinary approach to Art History, introducing students to key movements of each period. Scholars are expected to gain an appreciation for the interpretation of art, issues and viewpoints about art, understand the styles, influences and themes in art, and the historical and cultural contexts in which the art was generated. Scholars attend art class up to two times per week.

Numerous studies (Champions of Change, 1999) have shown the connection between participation in art and music education and success in academics. The Paideia Academy wants its students to experience “success” on a broader scale. Participation in music and art education during the formative school years brings countless benefits to each individual throughout life.

Scholars attend music class up to two times per week with the opportunity to join the Owl Choir that practices twice per week. The music curriculum aligns with the Arizona music standards.


Physical Education

Students attend physical education class up to two times per week. The physical education curriculum aligns with the Arizona physical education standards.


“Whole-Child Education – Body, Mind, Heart, Spirit” Enroll today!

Lifelong learning, good citizenship, solid careers, and healthy families…