BRWI
Bringing back the joy of reading & writing

Academic Upper Elementary

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Upper Elementary for Academic Year

CURRICULUM

 

Our classes for our upper elementary students for 4th & 5th graders are two hours long.  Students come in once a week.  The maximum number of students per class is generally 9.  These classes are categorized as enrichment classes.  Enrichment classes are for students who are at or above grade level and want to go above and beyond what they are learning in their regular school classes. 

Our Upper Elementary Reading and Writing Program is broken up into two semesters.  However, a new student can begin our program at any time and does not have to wait for the next unit to begin.

1st Semester : August 28, 2018 to January 18, 2019

INFORMATIONAL READING & WRITING THROUGH RESEARCH

During our fall semester, the 4th and 5th grade students will read high-interest history, social studies, and science texts, otherwise known as informational texts. As they read, students will:

  • develop structured note-taking and annotating habits
  • practice asking and answering both literal and inferential questions
  • use effective reading strategies to find both the explicit and implicit details in the text as the basis for their answers to questions
  • determine the multiple main ideas of a text and their corresponding details
  • organize key information into different organizational patterns: sequencing, description, cause/effect, compare/contrast and problem/solution
  • evaluate the point-of-view, credibility, and accuracy of different accounts of the same event or topic
  • learn to read through multiple sources
  • develop structure for note-taking and annotating as they read

As an ongoing writing project, the 4th and 5th grade students will engage in a semester-long research report of a topic of their choice.  Students will:

  • practice their researching skills, finding additional information and details from multiple print or digital sources
  • independently determine the sub-topics to be included
  • make sure to effectively combine enough facts, details, and examples to provide the reader with enough information
  • build the habit of returning to research, if details are not substantial enough and is needed to add more support
  • practice the proper paragraph structuring for each sub-topic, making sure to include topic sentences, supporting details, incorporated quotes, and the concluding sentences
  • develop personal voice and unique writing styles to keep the reader hooked
  • use proper transition words and technical vocabulary to enhance their writing throughout the full writing process (brainstorming, organizing, drafting, revising, editing)

2nd Semester : January 21, 2019 to May 31, 2019

LITERARY ANALYSIS THROUGH LITERATURE

During our spring semester, the 4th and 5th grade students will read and analyze a high-interest full-length chapter book.  Students will read this one book together in class for the purpose of learning close reading strategies and reading with a pen in hand.  Our goal is to help students:

  • develop confidence in their comprehension skills
  • build the practice of annotating in the text margins
  • identify shifts in main ideas for the purpose of chunking their reading into manageable sections
  • practice the thinking and questioning skills needed to read for analysis rather than just for entertainment
  • engage students in discussion to evaluate each narrative element and craft the author uses to develop a mood, a character’s changing personalities/feelings throughout the plot, and the essential themes not explicitly stated
  • compare and contrast multiple characters, settings, or events to see their different impact on the plot and their effect on the reader

As the 4th and 5th grade students read through our selected chapter book, students will compose literary analysis essays with the typical five paragraph structure: the introduction/thesis statement, three supporting body paragraphs, and a concluding paragraph. Students have the choice to answer any of the following literary analysis questions:

  1. Choose a character.  How does the character respond or change as the plot moves toward a resolution?
  2. How does a particular sentence, chapter, or scene contribute to the development of the theme?
  3. How does this story compare and contrast to another story or real-life event?

During the writing process, students will:

  • summarize and write commentary analysis for the main narrative elements: setting, protagonist, antagonist, conflict, climax, and resolution
  • find specific, concrete details from the text to combine into concise, elaborating details in their own writing
  • practice the proper essay and paragraph structuring for each sub-topic, making sure to include topic sentences, supporting details, incorporated quotes, and the concluding sentences
  • develop personal voice and unique writing styles to keep the reader hooked
  • effectively incorporate quotes into the supporting paragraphs for the purpose of articulating the inferred big ideas that answer their specific essay topic
  • use proper transition words and technical vocabulary to enhance their writing throughout the full writing process (brainstorming, organizing, drafting, revising, editing)

Schedule

Our Academic Year Program is broken up into two semesters.  However, a new student can begin our program at any time and does not have to wait for the next semester to begin.  Students come in once a week.  Please choose from one of the following classes:

  • Tuesday - 3:20 to 5:20 p.m.
  • Tuesday - 5:30 to 7:30 p.m.
  • Wednesday - 2:15 to 4:15 p.m.
  • Wednesday - 4:30 to 6:30 p.m.
  • Thursday - 3:20 to 5:20 p.m.
  • Thursday - 5:30 to 7:30 p.m.
  • Friday - 4:30 to 6:30 p.m. 

1st Semester

August 28, 2018 to January 18, 2019

INFORMATIONAL READING & WRITING THROUGH RESEARCH

2nd Semester

January 21, 2019 to May 31, 2019

LITERARY ANALYSIS THROUGH LITERATURE


HOLIDAYS

Thanksgiving Holiday : November 19, 2018 to November 23, 2018

Winter Break : December 24, 2018 to January 4, 2019

Spring Break : April 1, 2019 to April 5, 2019


Fees, Information & Policies

 
  1. How much does it cost? $50 per hour.  Our classes are 2 hours per week for a total of $100 per week.  Please note that our fees have increased this year (after 8 years of staying the same) due to increased expenses.
  2. What do I need to pay when I register?  To register, you will need to pay a one-time registration fee of $45 on Eventbrite.  Upon registration, you will also be charged for the number of weeks that your child will attend until the next regular billing cycle.  For example, if your child will attend one week before the next regular billing cycle, then you will be charged $100.  After this initial pro-rata charge, you will be billed every 4 sessions.
  3. How do I register?  There are 2 simple steps to the registration process:
    • $45 Registration Fee. Please register online by clicking on the “Register” button to reserve your child’s spot in the class and pay the $45 registration fee.  The registration fee is nonrefundable. After you pay the registration fee on Eventbrite, you will automatically be directed to the Registration Form.
    • Complete the Registration Form. After you pay the registration fee, the registration system will automatically direct you to the Registration Form.  The Registration Form will require parent’s contact information, student information, and the credit card authorization for the recurring 4-session payments.  Your registration will not be accepted until the Registration Form is completed and submitted. Upon registration, you will also be charged for the number of weeks that your child will attend until the next regular billing cycle.  For example, if your child will attend one week before the next regular billing cycle, then you will be charged $100.  After this initial pro-rata charge, you will be billed every 4 sessions.
    • After you pay the registration fee and complete the registration form, we will send a Welcome Email within 2 to 3 days to confirm your child’s enrollment in our program.
  4. What are the terms of service? When you register you must agree to our Instructional Agreement.  Please review it carefully.  You may also download a pdf copy of the Instructional Agreement.
  5. How do I pay for the fees?  Our billing cycle is every 4 sessions (not every four weeks).  You will not be billed for holiday weeks.  Every 4-session period, we will automatically bill your credit card for the next 4 sessions.
  6. Do I have to pay by credit card?  Yes, and we do require a credit card to be kept on file for automatic billing.  The online credit card form is secured by SSL protocol and data encryption through Formstack.
  7. Do you offer sibling discounts?  Yes. For students with siblings in our program, the hourly rate is $45 for the additional sibling.  For example, if there are 2 children from one family, one child will be at $50 per hour and the sibling will be at the reduced rate of $45 per hour.
  8. What is the class size?   Up to 8 or 9 students.  However, some classes could be larger.
  9. How do I get on the waitlist if the class is full?  To be put on a waitlist for any of our classes, please submit a waitlist request and provide the requested information.  During the beginning of the academic year, we are always adding new classes so please submit a waitlist request.  We will pull students off the waitlist first when we open new classes.
  10. Is there a minimum contract period?  There is no minimum contract period.  We do not obligate you to any long term contract, but you must give 30 days prior written notice to withdraw from classes.
  11. What is your absence policy? There are NO REFUNDS  for absences.  However, you may email us at info@brwi.org to request a make-up class for another day during the same week. Make-up classes are not guaranteed and are subject to availability.
  12. What if I am late to pickup my child?  As stated in our Instructional Agreement, if the student in not picked up within 15 minutes after the end of class, there will be a $25 fee for each occurrence.
  13. Is there homework?  Students at Bridges will not receive any homework.  All work is done at Bridges.
  14. How many times a week does my child have class at Bridges?  Students come to Bridges once a week.
  15. Can my child bring a snack to Bridges?   In consideration of some of our students that have severe food allergies that could be life-threatening, we have a strict NO SNACK policy.  
  16. Do you require an assessment prior to registration?  No, an assessment is not required prior to registration.  It is only necessary for students with reading & writing skills significantly below grade level.  If you have any questions, or would like to discuss your child’s reading & writing skills, we offer free consultations with our education director.  Please submit a request by click on the Questions tab on the bottom of the page.