• Innovative Instructional Approaches


    Balanced Literacy Program:

    Balanced Literacy is a framework designed to help all students learn to read and write effectively. The program stands firmly on the premise that all students can learn to read and write. The balance between reading and writing allows students to receive instruction needed in order to reach grade level, while allowing students to work at a level that is not frustrating for them.

    At REAMS we use a Literacy Collaborative Framework for Kindergarten through grade four focusing on four different types of reading experiences: reading aloud to the children, shared reading to the whole class, guided reading to small groups and independent reading. Students also participate in shared and individual writing activities each day.

    Reader's Theater

    Arts-Infused Curriculum:
    Attending an Arts Magnet School means that your child will experience their learning using the arts in a wide range of experiences. We like to think of the arts-infused curriculum as actively learning the state standards using motion, drama, music, visual arts, literary arts and media arts. The curriculum is designed to infuse the arts into the core subjects such as reading, math, science and social studies. An example of an arts-infused learning experience is clearly evident at REAMS in active units such as farm animals, dress up book reports, and famous Americans.

    Fermi Math:
    The Fermi Math Program is used for highly able math students.  A Fermi question emphasizes process rather than "the" answer.  A Fermi question demands communication and writing.
    A Fermi question utilizes estimation, rounding numbers and guesses.

    A Fermi question is posed with limited information given.
    How many water balloons would it take fill grandma's bathtub? 
    How many cockroaches will fill the trunk of a VW Beetle?
    How much fabric would it take to make a camo-suit for Moby Dick?

    How many eggs would fit in the Trojan Horse's body?

    A Fermi question requires that students ask many more questions.
    What are the approximate dimensions of the bathtub?
    What kind of roaches, gigantic tropical ones, or common German roaches?
    Do you want that camo-suit with or without a hood?
    What kind of eggs, dinosaur eggs, Wren eggs, duck eggs and the list goes on.

    EXCEL Program
    The mission of the Excel Program is to recognize gifted and talented students and appropriately meet their unique academic, social, and emotional needs to continue Rockford Area Schools' tradition of excellence, one student at a time.