Our Pre-Kindergarten program is not only designed to develop readiness skills for reading and math; care is taken to plan developmentally appropriate learning activities to cultivate a child’s social, emotional, and spiritual growth.
Our Pre-K students will also participate in music, art, Makerspace, JumpStart, Spanish, and P.E. classes.
We offer flexible half- and full-day scheduling to meet individual family needs.
Our elementary program includes Kindergarten through Grade 6. We will honor and encourage our students’ interest in learning and asking questions. Instruction will not only include well-tailored academic content but will also include hands-on learning, field trips, explorations, and projects.
We want our students to understand how important they are to God. Because of this, we intentionally weave God’s Word and a dependence on Him throughout the day. They see God as Creator in science, as sovereign through history, and as designer of all, intending us to live lovingly and respectfully in community. We practice restorative discipline as a way to resolve conflicts and encourage personal responsibility for better choices.
Since learning to read well is foundational to all other learning, there will be a strong balance of phonics and comprehension skills, incorporating not only leveled readers but also trade books and classic children’s literature.
Elementary students will have weekly art, P.E., chapel, Spanish, music, and Makerspace classes. Grades 2-6 will also develop digital literacy through weekly computer classes.
Curriculum for our Elementary School includes:
- D’Nealian Handwriting
- Abeka Math
- Journeys Reading, Language, Spelling & Writing
- Positive Action for Christ, Inc. for Bible
- Unit Studies planned by teachers for Science & History
At Hershey Christian Academy, 6th Grade is a transitional year to middle school. In addition to solid academic learning, students learn how to keep notebooks and storage spaces, change classrooms, and use study halls productively. They develop formal study skills, consider how to manage social media in a Christian context, and both understand and practice social skills and manners. Sixth grade is a springboard to greater responsibility and privilege through creative leadership and active service to others in the school and community.
In the first year of Hershey Christian Academy, we are offering 7th, 8th, and 9th grades. Until we have sufficient enrollment to hire specialized secondary teachers to serve our students in a more traditional format, these three classes will be grouped together. Our solid educational program for them will meet their needs through
- Specials classes to include art, Bible, music, digital skills, Makerspace, P.E., and Spanish
- Supervised e-learning for English, history, and science
- Supervised e-learning for math at each student’s level
- Weekly chapel
- Intentional student leadership development with an emphasis on service
Curriculum for our Secondary School includes:
- Abeka ProTeach e-learning
- Spanish with a Mission
HCA seeks to develop a high-quality secondary program through the 12th grade. During the 2019-2020 school year, we will be working diligently to research and prepare curriculum to fulfill this end. Among other things, we will be looking at the university model, dual-enrollment, certifications, and internship opportunities with churches, businesses, and non-profit organizations. We will be reaching out to leaders in our local community for their input into ways that we can better prepare our students for post-secondary success.
There are numerous ways to name a STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Mathematics) lab. We call ours The Makerspace. It’s a class intended to celebrate hands-on learning and discovery. In the Makerspace, all kinds of learning happens. We could be programming robots to navigate a block maze, hand-sewing pillows, creating scrapbook pages, watching what open and closed circuits do, or making something that does something. We might be tracking bird migrations or fashioning flower arrangements or taking apart old gadgets. Guided inquiry invites more questions and experimentation, which then leads to repurposing, new inventions, and more enthusiasm to explore. Robert Louis Stevenson wrote, “The world is so full of a number of things, I’m sure we should all be as happy as kings!” This is the invitation of the Makerspace. It’s a favorite place to be!
The theme of the Makerspace is Genesis 2:15 (NIV)…
“The LORD God took the man and put him in the Garden of Eden to work it and take care of it.”
Our philosophy about Makerspace education is based on these core observations.
- God is Creator.“In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth.” (Genesis 1:1)
- As God’s image-bearers, we celebrate and develop the desire to explore, experiment, and create that He placed in all people.“So God created man in HIs own image, in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them. God blessed them and said to them, ‘Be fruitful and increase in number; fill the earth and subdue it. Rule over the fish of the sea and the birds of the air and over every living creature that moves on the ground.’” (Genesis 1:27-28)
- Teachers and students are both learners and can therefore share the process of discovery in humility and wonder. “When I consider your heavens, the work of your fingers, the moon and the stars, which you have set in place, what is mankind that you are mindful of them, human beings that you care for them?” (Psalm 8:3-4)
- As followers of Jesus, Christian educators are called to lovingly provide students with a safe, affirming environment in which to discover and develop their gifts and interests. “Jesus said to them, ‘Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these.” (Matthew 19:14)
- Inquiry-based discovery learning from a faith perspective is an effective and respectful way to explore the physical realm, engage in its care, and understand God’s ways. “Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life?” (Matthew 6:26-27)
Do Digital Natives need digital skills classes? Our students represent a generation that has never known life without mobile devices. Their global perspective has largely been formed by the World Wide Web.
Digital skills are of utmost importance to these learners. At Hershey Christian Academy, we will honor our students by mentoring them for present and future success In both computer literacy (hardware, software, keyboarding, word processing) and computer science (problem-solving STEM applications, coding/programming, CAD/3D modeling).
Digital citizenship and online safety accompany all aspects of our digital skills program. The fact the the Internet is a useful tool does not mean that it is morally neutral. As followers of Jesus, we want to obey HIs instruction to be “wise as serpents and harmless as doves” in the way we live and represent Him. This has great significance in the digital world. There must be intentionality in the way we build discerning, blameless, compassionate, and courageous young people who lead balanced and successful lives with the help of technology.
The goal of physical education at HCA is 3-fold:
(1) teach students motor skills and movement patterns that enhance physical activity and fitness;
(2) teach students concepts, principles and strategies related to athletic performance;
(3) teach students behavior patterns that reflect principles in God’s Word.