Special Area Classes
The major goals of the physical education curriculum
is to develop personal activity and fitness habits
and to enhance motor skills. The physical education
curriculum is based on the Pangrazi method of skills
development, where students learn about individual
sports and team sports. They enjoy games such as
basketball, volleyball, softball, and flag football.
Students also participate in the Presidential Fitness
Contest, run a timed mile, and enjoy a track and field
Students in grades 3-8 study Spanish by learning basic communication skills with a focus on conversational Spanish. They develop an appreciation for the cultural differences in Spanish-speaking countries. The curriculum begins in third grade with simple vocabulary such as numbers and phrases. As students progress through the grades, reading, writing, verb conjugation, and listening comprehension are added to the course of study.
Computers and Technology
In the computer lab, students begin technology training in third grade. Students first learn proper keyboarding techniques, then word processing and file manipulation. Later they master spreadsheet and database usage and move on to desktop publishing using graphic arts and digital photographs. In the upper grades, students begin to design multimedia presentations, explore basic programming concepts, and learn about designing and creating web pages. Computer lab time is coordinated with classroom assignments so the students can apply their knowledge in real-world applications.The Valley Academy technology curriculum exceeds Arizona state standards.
The art curriculum has two main purposes: to instill a love of the creative process and to impart an appreciation of great works of art and art history. Like the great masters, students acquire skills by studying techniques of other artists. They employ a variety of media, including pencils, pastels, pottery, and acrylic and watercolor paints. Direct instruction in technique and style teaches the importance of vision, perspective, and motivation. Through art history studies, students identify many great masterpieces and artists.
The music curriculum is designed to help students acquire knowledge about a diverse range of musical styles. They are taught to critique music independently and with others. They learn to read and notate music and put this knowledge to use by composing short pieces of music. Students also gain public performance experience by singing and playing instruments at school-wide concerts. For students interested in further instrumental or vocal instruction, Valley Academy offers band and chorus outside of the regular school day.