OVERVIEW OF ACADEMIC PROGRAMS (KINDERGARTEN TO GRADE 9)

All programs, kindergarten through grade 9, are carefully designed with progression of knowledge, skills and understandings in mind. The aim is to develop well-rounded students in all areas of learning. You may access further curriculum information at the end of every sbuject. Please scroll down the page.

ENGLISH

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The goal of English education at Nishimachi is to ensure effective communication in the English language. Furthermore, the English program provides opportunities to access the English language for the purpose of developing life-long learning habits and active global citizenship. Independence, competence and enthusiasm are developed through reading, writing, listening and speaking in a wide variety of genres, which promotes engagement in, and responsibility for, their own learning. Effective communication in the English language is achieved by context-driven instruction, metacognition, and collaborative and independent learning experiences.

JAPANESE

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We believe that learning another language provides the opportunity to grow beyond a single culture. The ultimate goal for students who attend Nishimachi, kindergarten through grade 9, is to put themselves firmly on a path towards bilingualism. Specifically, the goal of Japanese education at Nishimachi is to develop the capability in each student to communicate in Japanese: reading, writing, listening, and speaking. All students take Japanese, in classes ranging from 40 to 60 minutes per day. Students are grouped by ability, and levels range from beginner to Japanese-as-a-first language. Japanese-as-a-first-language classes follow curriculum guidelines set by, and use textbooks published by, the Monbukagakusho (Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology). Japanese-as-a-second language classes draw upon a variety of teaching materials and strategies developed at Nishimachi over the years.

MATHEMATICS

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The goal of the Nishimachi International School mathematics program is to provide students with the knowledge and tools they need to function in a world dependent upon the application of mathematics. All students are expected to achieve mathematical proficiency by developing both conceptual understanding and procedural fluency. Students will learn to reason mathematically and use mathematics to solve problems in authentic contexts. As corollaries to program goals, students will:
・appreciate mathematics as an essential and relevant part of life;
・show interest and enjoyment in inquiry and the pursuit of mathematical knowledge, skills, and understanding;
・demonstrate confidence in applying mathematical knowledge, skills, and understanding to everyday situations and to the solution of everyday problems; and
・develop and demonstrate perseverance in undertaking mathematical challenges

SCIENCE

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The Nishimachi science program gives students the opportunity to appreciate and understand science through personal experience. Science is taught with a practical “hands-on/minds-on” learning experiences. Subject areas are explored through an inquiry approach and first-hand experimentation that allows ongoing authentic assessment. Problem solving is an important skill which students hone progressively, level by level. The program encourages students to make predictions, construct their own means of testing and evaluating predictions, and draw connections to the wider world.

SOCIAL STUDIES

Nishimachi’s social studies curriculum helps students understand the world in which they live. Students are actively engaged in meaningful units of study that encourage discussion, foster respect for self and others, while promoting global perspectives and social responsibility in both a historical and contemporary world context. The curriculum also emphasizes a deeper knowledge, understanding, and appreciation of Japan.
Japanese social studies in the middle school provides an extended opportunity for students to become conversant with Japanese geography, history, and culture, and to learn more about the constitution and political, economic, and social systems of our host country.

HEALTH AND WELLNESS

We provide students with information and opportunities to develop skills and attitudes that enable them to obtain and interpret information relative to their physical and mental well being. The goal is to help them make informed choices as they solve problems and cultivate a healthy lifestyle. We recognize that the family is the primary source for establishing a child’s sense of values and strongly believe that positive developmental growth is enhanced when home and school work together. The health and wellness program at Nishimachi is sequentially embedded within overall school learning.

THE ARTS—MUSIC, DRAMA, VISUAL ARTS

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The arts programs at Nishimachi—visual arts, music, and drama—provide an education rich in aesthetic experiences that are open ended, exploratory in nature, and meaningful. Participation is highly valued, and teachers work to help students identify their strengths and chart their progress. Unique opportunities present themselves for students to express themselves in ways not afforded them in other subjects. In addition to curricular offerings, there are also public performance and exhibition opportunities throughout the year.

PHYSICAL EDUCATION

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The physical education curriculum at Nishimachi provides opportunities for all students to gain knowledge and develop skills and values which enhance self-esteem and a sense of well being. Teamwork, sportsmanship, tolerance, respect, and honesty are fostered within a balanced program of competitive and cooperative sports-based experiences. Through active participation in a variety of group and individual activities, students will acquire knowledge of game rules and strategies, develop fine and gross motor skills, endurance, and aesthetic appreciation, as well as leadership and decision-making skills.

INFORMATION LITERACY AND TECHNOLOGY

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An important means of enhancing learning and teaching at Nishimachi is the effective use of information and communication technology. Technology continues to have an increasingly significant impact on all aspects of education, of life at home and in the workplace. Students at Nishimachi are encouraged to become twenty-first century learners through the use of information technology, throughout the curriculum, ensuring that students acquire the necessary skills and knowledge to function productively in a modern global society. Technology is utilized in the classrooms on a regular basis for creating, publishing, searching, and researching. Students also use the media center and the Internet to search for information on topics related to their studies. As such learning is both exciting and stimulating, empowering each student to achieve his or her potential.as the means of ensuring our students acquire the necessary skills and knowledge to function productively in a global society, now and in the future. In the Nishimach learning environment, learning becomes both exciting and stimulating, empowering each student to achieve his or her potential.