In order for a student to develop competencies, there must exist a firm foundation of facts and knowledge. Certain facts must be memorized and used as tools in gaining other knowledge and in developing competencies. Other knowledge is gained by building upon and combining fundamental facts and bits of knowledge. This happens by hearing, seeing, and experiencing in learning situations, followed by practice and repeated exposure. This happens by dialogue, questioning, experimentation, risk-taking, and group activities. This happens by reflection, day-dreaming, imagining, visualizing, and inspiration. No one knows all the ways this happens.
In the modern world, there has been a vast explosion of knowledge which continues today! It is impossible to include all knowledge in a school curriculum. Quality Schools International carefully selects knowledge considered essential for a person educated in modern society and concentrates on mastery of these essentials. The theme “less is more” is employed which means that it is better to engage in the study of less information and gain mastery with a view to proficient use as applied to higher learning, than it is to “cover” large amounts of information superficially and without mastery.
Each of the following seven areas of knowledge is listed with broad categories of success. These define in general terms the outcomes considered important by Quality Schools International with a view to mastery by all of our students.
- TSW develop a vocabulary in the English language which enables one to pursue higher education.
- TSW know the rules of grammar, punctuation, and sentence structure.
- TSW know how to spell correctly the vast majority of words used and how to find correct spellings for others.
- TSW be familiar with selected literature (English and American) in the English language including fiction, non-fiction, short stories, poetry, and drama.
- TSW know how to use the library, internet, and other sources of information in research and report writing.
- TSW know number facts (addition and subtraction facts, multiplication tables etc.)
- TSW demonstrate an understanding of geometrical concepts by solving problems involving geometrical shapes (two and three dimensions), by solving problems involving measurements, and by correctly identifying, defining, and using geometrical terms.
- TSW develop a basic knowledge of the political, cultural, economic, and geographic divisions of the world.
- TSW be familiar with the development of the great civilizations in history, including Egyptian, Greek, Roman, Arab, and Chinese.
- TSW know different forms of government and relate these to countries in the world.
- TSW demonstrate an understanding of the economic forces and economic development of the globe and relate them to different areas of the world.
- TSW be familiar with the development of the United States of America including the main events of its history.
- TSW be familiar with the history and geography of the country of the school’s location and the geographical area surrounding the country.
- TSW know the basics of physical science including the concepts of and descriptions of motion, force, energy, and elementary astronomy.
- TSW know the basics of earth science including beginning meteorology, geology, oceanography, and the structure of the earth’s surface.
- TSW know the basics of biological science including botany, zoology, anatomy, physiology, ecology, and models of origins of living things.
- TSW gain a knowledge of experimental hands-on laboratory procedures which clarify and confirm scientific concepts and which give an ability to make independent laboratory tests and experiments.
Languages other than English
- TSW develop a vocabulary in at least one language other than English at an appropriate level.
- TSW know the rules of grammar, punctuation, and sentence structure of the same language at an appropriate level.
- TSW know the script, be able to write, and know how to spell correctly the vast majority of words used in the same language at an appropriate level.
- TSW be familiar with the culture (including selected literature) in the same language at an appropriate level.
Creative and Applied Arts
- TSW be familiar with the history of the development of classical music including a selection of world composers and their works and that of at least one other type of music from any culture.
- TSW be familiar with the development of an international selection of great art and architectural works.
Personal Health and World Environmental Issues
- TSW know how to plan a program of exercise and sports activities with a view to lifetime physical fitness.
- TSW know what constitutes a nutritional and balanced diet and will recognize the dangers of eating disorders.
- TSW know the facts concerning the harmful effects of tobacco, alcohol, and other drugs.
- TSW be aware of the effects of overpopulation, pollution, depletion of the world’s resources, and destruction of wildlife and natural areas.
- TSW know the habits of good general personal hygiene with a view to the prevention of disease.