Elementary School – American School of Kosova

Elementary School

( 1-5 Grade)

Welcome to our Elementary School Grades 1-5

We are so proud to introduce you to the Elementary School division.  I am honored to have the opportunity to lead a school with such a rich tradition of education. The school continues to grow, our approach to education continues to evolve and we live up to our promise “Together we are educating the leaders of tomorrow, for a better future”.  

Students are at the forefront of all that we do. Teachers are committed to meeting the needs and fostering growth of all students in all skill areas, academically as well as socially and emotionally. Our curriculum includes Common Core, AERO and NGSS standards and is fully aligned with Kosovo Ministry of Education Standards. Our instructional design process includes data on student readiness and interest for learning as we strive for inclusion. Our character education program fosters self-advocacy, resilience, a growth mindset and collaboration. We integrate information technology, the arts and our character education programs throughout the curriculum, to promote 21st century skills and a healthy mindset for lifelong learning. 

Our passionate and committed teachers bring our programs to life and assure a challenging, yet warm and nurturing learning experience for our 370 students. The elementary teaching faculty and specialists educated around the world, qualified to fulfill the curriculum and engage in ongoing professional development. A high degree of professional collaboration and mentoring assures that each student reaps the best of our team of educators.

Sincerely,

Merita Ajdini

Elementary School Principal

 

ELEMENTARY SCHOOL PHILOSOPHY (Grades 1-5)

ASK Elementary focuses on guiding our students to “Learn to learn.” Key to this is the foundational skills in reading, math, science, and social studies. We recognize the importance of arts, physical education, and health. 21st Century Technology is integrated throughout all subjects. ASK is explicit and intentional to grow our students’ ability to think creatively, innovatively, and it recognizes that the social-emotional growth of our students is as equally important as academic achievement. Each school day is filled with opportunities for students to find their own voice to express their ideas, collaborate on class projects, and discover new artistic talents. 

ASK students develop a sense of community. The ASK Elementary Leader in Me program helps students understand themselves and gain perspective and empathy for their peers. Our students grow character virtues that develop a sense of responsibility and leadership that will serve them for a lifetime and guide them to give back to society to make the world a better place.

STANDARD BASED CURRICULUM

The curriculum at ASK is based on U.S Common Core State Standards that define what students should know and be able to do for each subject area. These standards provide clear and coherent learning targets and progression. Standards are divided into benchmarks, which describe the increasingly complex content and skills that students address as they move from one grade level to another. Standards and benchmarks help us focus on the process, as well as the product, and break learning into manageable steps that guide teachers and can be shared with students.

ELEMENTARY SCHOOL STUDENT HANDBOOK (Grades 1-5)

The behavioral philosophy at ASK is to support students in their learning of responsibility and self-discipline as an educational process rather than as a punitive outcome. We support a model of positive discipline: setting clear expectations for behavior, providing explicit teaching of expectations, and delivering meaningful and timely feedback for appropriate and inappropriate behavior.

SOCIAL EMOTIONAL COUNSELING (PreK-Grade 12)

In order to meet the emotional needs of students, we have developed an advisory program that focuses on building character, leadership skills, self-reflection capacity, and friendship. In the Early Years, prek-grade 2 students work with their homeroom teacher on a daily basis to discuss and participate in lessons to build an understanding of emotional health. In grades 3-5 teachers teach lessons daily. In grades 6-12 students meet with their homeroom teacher 3 days a week.

For additional support, ASK employees one full-time counselor for students PreSchool- grade 12. The counselor offers individual support to students such as: resolving personal or interpersonal problems, goal setting, and organization, making healthy friendships, talking through problems with peers, substance abuse, bullying, anger management, careers, depression, relationships, self-image, stress, and suicide. The counselor may also facilitate small group sessions to teach listening and social skills, empathizing with others, and conflict management.

LANGUAGE & LEARNING SUPPORT (PreK-Grade12)

The American School of Kosova’s (ASK) English as a Second Language and Learning Support programs aim to foster student well-being and success by creating holistic learning programs that help students reach their academic, social, emotional, and intellectual goals. By identifying and understanding personal and academic differences in each of our students, we strive to meet individual needs and to ensure success in the core classroom environment. 

The success of each student is a responsibility shared by the student, the school, and the family, and each has a role in maintaining strategies and goals to contribute to that success. ESL and learning specialists support student success through collaborative planning and preparation, in-class differentiation and accommodations, push-in support, pull-out support, mentorship, and guidance/counseling programs. We strive to keep students in the most inclusive setting possible at all times. 

For students requiring ESL or learning support services, an individual record including history, interventions, accommodations, goals, and progress is maintained and regularly evaluated in order to ensure the best program for each student. 

For students requiring ESL or learning support services, an individual record including history, interventions, accommodations, goals, and progress is maintained and regularly evaluated in order to ensure the best program for each student.

LANGUAGE & LEARNING SUPPORT PROGRAM DESCRIPTION

The Language and Learning Support (LLS) Program serves students with a variety of educational needs. The professional team is comprised of teachers specialized in the following areas: 

-Learning Support (for students with diagnosed needs)

-Talented and Gifted (TAG) 

-Social, emotional, or behavioral coaching 

-English as a Second Language (ESL) 

Services include pull-out and push-in instruction, mainstreaming in-class support, and a student-centered professional coaching program for teachers. Specific criteria for entrance and exit from the service areas are used and strictly adhered to. Student Success Team (SST) meets regularly to discuss students referred and to plan support interventions.

LEADER IN ME

The Leader in Me is a whole school transformation process by teaching 21st Century leadership and other life skills to students in an academic setting.

Inspired by 7 Habits of Highly Successful People, the Leader in Me program uses the implementation of 7 habits into the school’s curriculum and faculty mindset. It is a way of thinking as opposed to another task of the day.

By teaching students to be proactive, set goals, develop cooperative relationships, and build personal emotional and social capacity, these principles improve learning outcomes, enhance student experiences, and ensure the cultivation of skills that strengthen student achievement. Likewise the 7 Habits principles do well to point students and educators to the need to focus on social and emotional learning broadly. Such learning is not only helpful, but appears to be crucial to student academic success.

STUDENT SERVICE (PreK-Grade12)

At the American School of Kosova (ASK), we are committed to building a community of diverse learners, which benefits us all as an inclusive community and as global citizens. We invite and welcome students with a range of needs on a casebycase basis given our present ability to provide the necessary services and support. We believe that everyone should be included, challenged, and successful. We understand the complexity of providing support for students with a range of learning or cognitive disabilities and make plans with parents and caregivers, starting at the point of admissions, to ensure that the needs of all children are met

Working to support students who are gifted is also central to our mission, as is providing the right level of challenge for every student. If a student is identified with learning ability and/or gifted & talented, an Individual Learning Plan (ILP) will be developed and implemented. Also to meet the needs of all our students, we collaborate to offer a range of learning support interventions. When a student requires more intensive mediation of their learning, we initiate the Student Study Team (SST) Process and implement short term interventions as the next step. If further support is needed, a diagnostic process will be initiated to confirm or rule out a learning disability. Further steps will be taken based on what is learned from the diagnostic process. 

Here you will find the detailed Student Service Handbook.

POWERSCHOOL

How does PowerSchool help student’s academic growth? Parents who are actively involved in their child’s education can help keep students on track. Every student and parent can have instant access to real-time grades, attendance, comments, assignments, and scores directly from the teacher’s grade book, see teacher comments and grades; send and receive emails. Knowing your student’s grades and assignments is a great starting point to discuss progress, or help, or give congratulations, which will strengthen the relationship with your student.

STANDARD BASED REPORT CARDS-REPORTING THE ACHIEVEMENT OF LEARNING

Our standard-based reporting scales indicate the degree to which a student meets expectations, as well as consistency and independence. The growth focused report shows what the student has achieved as well as next steps in the learning progression.

Report Cards are issued four times  a year: November, February, April  and June. This is a picture of how the student is demonstrating understanding of the skills and knowledge outlined in the curriculum expectations.

GRADING SCALE

E – Exceeding Expectations: The student is meeting grade level expectations with distinction.  Performance is characterized by self-motivation and the ability to apply skills with consistent accuracy and independence, and a high level of quality.

ME -Meeting Expectations :The student is consistently meeting grade level expectations, with little or no support. Performance is characterized by thorough understanding of concepts and skills.

AE- Approaching Expectations: The student is progressing toward grade level expectations.  Performance is characterized by the ability to apply skills with increasing success.  Performance varies regarding accuracy, quality, and level of support needed.

BE – Beginning Expectations: At this time, the student is not meeting grade level expectations. Performance is inconsistent with guidance and support. 

NAY – Not assessed yet

M​ – The standards for the area indicated have been modified.