Curriculum development is a never-ending process of continual improvement. Choosing the right curriculum and ensuring that curriculum is able to grow and develop with the school and with our students is one of the most important components of meeting our larger objectives of preparing our students to excel
. The curriculum of the Islamic Academy of San Antonio follows the Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills (TEKS) curriculum standards and uses State approved books, supplemented by Islamic material where possible. The Islamic curriculum is based on character building and development.
The academic curriculum is designed to provide Differentiated Instruction that allows students to have multiple options for taking in information and making sense of ideas. The model of differentiated instruction requires teachers to be flexible in their approach to teaching and adjusting the curriculum and presentation of information to learners rather than expecting students to modify themselves for the curriculum. Classroom teaching is a blend of whole-class, group and individual instruction. Differentiated Instruction is a teaching theory based on the premise that instructional approaches should vary and be adapted in relation to individual and diverse students in classrooms. To differentiate instruction is to recognize students varying background knowledge, readiness, language, preferences in learning, interests, and to react responsively. Differentiated instruction is a process to approach teaching and learning for students of differing abilities in the same class. The intent of differentiating instruction is to maximize each student’s growth and individual success by meeting each student where he or she is, and assisting in the learning process.
IASA uses the Differentiated Instruction Model along with Learning Styles, Multiple Intelligences and an accelerated Scope and Sequence for core subjects such as math, language arts, science and social studies. Emphasis is focused on reading and writing skills starting with developmental learners through middle schools. Bloom’s Taxonomy is used to foster critical thinking skills in all grades. Informal reading, writing, spelling and math inventories are used three times a year to assess these skills with the emergent learners, elementary and middle schools.
The current IASA curriculum is inclusive of an Arabic Language Program. The development of language skills among the student body allows for students to be better prepared to enter a globalized work force and better navigate an increasingly multicultural world. According to language researcher David Graddol, "monolingual speakers of any variety of English -- American or British -- will experience increasing difficulty in employment and political life, and are likely to become bewildered by many aspects of society and culture around them."(1) He also believes that by 2050, Arabic will be spoken by more people than English, and Spanish nearly equal to it.