Mercer Island School District's curriculum is selected to support student learning as defined by the Washington State Essential Academic Learning Requirements (EALRs) and the English Language Arts and Mathematics Common Core State Standards. We are in the process of a multi-year transition to the English Language Arts and Mathematics Common Core State Standards, which will be completed in the 2014-2015 school year. Until that time, students will be taught and assessed using both the afore-mentioned Common Core State Standards and the Washington State Essential Academic Learning Requirements (EALRs).

Kindergarten Communication

Grade Level targets will be developed to encompass the following EALRs:
EALR #1: Listens and observes to gain understanding.
EALR #2: Communicates ideas clearly and effectively.
EALR #3: Uses communication strategies and skills to work effectively with others.
EALR #4: Analyzes and evaluates the effectiveness of formal and informal communication.

Kindergarten Health & Fitness

Health curriculum is in the process of being revised to encompass the following EALRs:
EALR #1: Acquires the knowledge and skills necessary to maintain an active life.
EALR #2: Acquires the knowledge and skills necessary to maintain a healthy life.
EALR #3: Analyzes and evaluates the impact of real life influences on health.
EALR #4: Analyzes health and safety information to develop health and fitness plans based on life goals.
Fitness is an integral part of the total educational program of the Mercer Island School District. The instructional program provides each student with the opportunities necessary to develop physical skills, fitness, attitudes, and knowledge which will prepare him/her to confidently investigate and participate in a wide variety of basic physical education activities. Student objectives and specific activities follow.
  • Appreciates and maintains a state of physical fitness for daily living.
  • Values and practices the following personal qualities in working and playing with others for common goals.
    • Self-control
    • Self-confidence
    • Good sportsmanship
    • Leadership
    • Respect for others
  • Through a variety of activities, develops the following skills to individual potential:
    • Neuromuscular coordination
    • Agility
    • Balance
    • Flexibility
  • Learns rules and applies strategies in a variety of activities and sports.
  • Values participation and develops understanding, interest, and skill in popular sports and leisure-time activities.

Kindergarten Reading

Common Core State Standards:
MISD is in the process of a multi-year transition to the Common Core Standards. Students’ grades are based on the standards as instructed during this trimester.
Concepts of Print:
  • Demonstrates left to right (directionality)
  • Distinguishes between a letter, word and sentence
Phonological/Phonemic Awareness:
  • Rhymes
  • Blend words
  • Segments words
  • Substitutes sounds
Phonics and Word Recognition:
  • Identifies uppercase letters
  • Identifies lower case letters
  • Identifies letter sounds
  • Decodes three and four letter words with short vowels
  • Recognizes common sight words
  • Understands the meaning of what is read aloud
  • Asks and answers questions about text
  • Retells stories using beginning, middle and end
  • Identifies story elements: characters, setting and important events

Kindergarten Social Studies

Our World, Now and Long Ago

Kindergarten Writing

Common Core State Standards:
MISD is in the process of a multi-year transition to the Common Core Standards. Students’ grades are based on the standards as instructed during this trimester. For the K-5 Writing scope and sequence, please see the College and Career Readiness Anchor Standards for Writing, p. 19-20. Visit this site for the Kindergarten Writing Standards.
Information/Explanatory Writing:
Students will:
  • Use a combination of drawing, dictating, and writing to compose informative/ explanatory texts in which they name what they are writing about and supply some information about the topic.
Students will:
  • Use a combination of drawing, dictating, and writing to narrate a single event or several loosely linked events
  • Tell about the events in the order in which they occurred
  • Provide a reaction to what happened.
  • Writes some high frequency words
  • Writes sounds he/she hears in words
  • Writes legibly
  • Writes upper and lower case letters
  • Writes from left to right and top to bottom
  • Uses spaces between words

Kindergarten Fine Arts

EALR #1: Knowledge and Skills
Identify in other works of art and be able to use in their own work the following elements:
  • color
  • form
  • line
  • shape
  • space
  • texture
Identify in other works of art and be able to use in their own work the following principles:
  • balance
  • rhythm/movement
  • unity
EALR #2: Creating & Performing
Use the following criteria to discuss their own work and the work of others:
  • describe
  • analyze
EALR #3: Communicating
  • Describe what is seen heard, and felt in response to art works.
  • Identify how feelings are expressed through the arts.
EALR #4: Connecting
  • Identify concepts and vocabulary common to the arts and other content areas.

Kindergarten Mathematics

Common Core State Standards:
MISD is in the process of a multi-year transition to the Common Core Standards. Students’ grades are based on the standards as instructed during this trimester.
Number and Counting:
  • Counting and Cardinality
  • Know number names and the count sequence
  • Count to tell the number of objects
  • Compare numbers
  • Numbers and Operations in Base Ten
  • Work with numbers 11-19 to gain foundations for place value
Operations and Algebraic Thinking:
Understand addition as putting together and adding to, and understand subtraction as taking apart and taking from
Measurement and Data:
  • Describe and compare measurable attributes
  • Classify objects and count the number of objects in categories
  • Identify and describe shapes
  • Analyze, compare, create, and compose shapes

Kindergarten Science

Kindergarten Science Learning Targets:
The Mercer Island School District’s science curriculum has been aligned with the State Essential Academic Learning Requirements and National Science Education Standards. MISD has carefully selected scientific units of study for each grade level to ensure a well rounded science education for each child. The science units for Kindergarten are Weather from National Science Resources Center, Wood from Lawrence Hall of Science and Chick Embryology a Highline developed and MISD enriched unit.
In the Wood unit students are introduced to a variety of kinds of wood in a systematic way so that they will observe and compare the properties of wood, discover how wood materials interact with water, and experience how they can change wood into various products. In Properties of Wood, students work with five different samples of wood (basswood, particleboard, pine, plywood, and redwood) to observe their properties. They investigate wood in water and find out what it takes to sink samples of wood. In Woodworking, students begin by using sandpaper to change the shape of wood. They explore the resulting sawdust and wood shavings. They put wood together by making sandwich wood ( plywood) and sawdust wood (particleboard). They also put wood together with nails and glue to create wood sculptures.
  • Compare different kinds of wood to discover how they are alike and how they are different.
  • Different kinds of wood interact differently when submerged in water. The properties of floating and sinking.
  • Wood can be changed into a variety of products.
  • Some wood is actually a mixture.
  • Wood can be used to build structures.
  • Observing and describing the properties of a variety of wood.
  • Communicating observations
  • Students acquire vocabulary associated with the properties of wood.
  • Comparing and contrasting of types of wood.
  • Developing experiments to test their hypothesis about the buoyancy of the wood.
  • Children develop a growing curiosity and interest in the physical world around them.
  • Children gain early experiences that will contribute to their understanding of several pervasive themes that relate one scientific idea to another: Structure, Change, and Interaction.
  • Children develop an appreciation for the diversity of wood.
Chick Embryology - optional unit
Babies of all kinds are very intriguing to kindergartners be they animals or human. Questions concerning how babies are made, how they look before they are born, and how long they take to grow are also very much a part for a five year old’s interest. The embryological information is technically accurate but simplified to a kindergarten level in this Chick Embryology unit. The study of chick embryology takes place over the twenty-one day gestation period of a chicken egg. There are also several lessons following hatching to observe the postnatal growth of the chick.
  • An animal’s life is part of a life cycle.
  • An animal’s life begin as an egg.
  • Organisms have needs which must be met in order to grow and develop.
  • Animals change as they grow and develop.
  • Making observations of the growth and development of the chick embryo.
  • Understanding the difference between an observation and an inference.
  • Making predictions and comparisons of the chick embryos appearance and change over time.
  • Collecting data of the changes in the chick’s development and behavior.
  • Making measurements of the egg and eventually of the chick.
This unit introduces kindergartners to the concept of weather and how it affects their lives. Using a variety of tools, students observe, discuss, measure, and record data on cloud cover, precipitation, wind and temperature. They learn how to read a thermometer and construct a rain gauge to measure precipitation. They also study cloud formations and use a wind scale to estimate the speed of wind. To apply their new skills and knowledge, students compare their own weather predictions with an actual weather forecast and use the weather data they have collected to form generalizations about the weather in their own locale.
  • Weather changes from day to day and week to week.
  • Features of weather include cloud cover, precipitation, wind, and temperature.
  • Tools used to measure different features of weather include wind scales, thermometers, and rain gauges.
  • Meteorologists are scientists who study, observe, and record information about the weather and who use that information to forecast the weather.
  • Weather affects the decisions people make about the clothing they will wear and about their outside activities.
  • Observing the weather by using the senses.
  • Discussing and recording information about weather features.
  • Using simple tools to estimate wind speed and measure temperature and rainfall.
  • Observing differences in types of clouds.
  • Conducting experiments and drawing conclusions about appropriate clothing for different types of weather.
  • Organizing weather data on graphs and long-term data collection charts.
  • Interpreting and summarizing long-term weather data.
  • Increasing awareness of weather.
  • Appreciating how weather affects daily life.
  • Recognizing that measurements and long-term records are useful and help us learn more about weather.

Kindergarten Technology

Technology Competencies

Technology Learning Outcomes for Students:
  • Students will demonstrate a sound understanding of the nature and operation of technology systems and are proficient in the use of technology.
  • Students will understand the ethical, cultural, and societal issues related to technology, practice responsible use of technology systems, information and software, and develop positive attitudes towards technology use.
  • Students will use technology tools to enhance learning, increase productivity, promote creativity, collaborate in constructing technology-enhanced models, prepare publications, and produce other creative works.
  • Students will use telecommunications to collaborate, publish, and interact with peers, experts, and other audience. Additionally, students will use a variety of media and formats to communicate information and ideas effectively to multiple audiences.
  • Students will use technology to locate, evaluate, and collect information from a variety of sources, and use technology tools to process data and report results.
  • Students will use technology resources for solving problems and making informed decisions, including employing technology in the development of strategies for solving problems in the real world.
The specific grade level student Technology Competencies can be found here.