Scent of Water
Schedule and Curricular Overview
Welcoming: All students and teachers gather before the Lord in this interactive opening of the day, to sing original, contemporary and heritage hymns; to consider His Word and His World; to pray; and to commit the day to Him. Family members are always welcome to join.
Integral Studies: All school disciplines are interwoven holistically into the studies with attention to Biblical Truth. There is engagement with all basic subjects over the course of the unit in the Integral Studies portion of the day. Much of the Integral Study will purposefully take place outdoors. We recognize, embrace and celebrate “emergent curriculum” arising from curiosity, current events, interests and initiative of students, seeing these as legitimate facets of the curriculum and incorporating them into the prepared lesson plans. We prioritize wonder!
Lunch/Seminar/Free Play: Students eat their parent-provided bag lunches together with teachers as they discuss some part of the morning’s study using Socratic seminar methods. Free Play is considered a critical part of the day. This is shepherded for general safety but is otherwise an unstructured, student-initiated and student-directed play time for all ages, usually outdoors. Scent of Water takes the view that children and young people ultimately benefit from typical children’s play, with some degree of physicality, risk-taking, imagination, rule-setting, and self-regulation. Students freely choose to be socially interactive or to enjoy solitude, as they desire.
Focus on Phonics K-3rd grades: Logic of English reading/spelling/writing. A playful approach keeps a delight-driven practice of skills engaging for young students, and the whole range of learners. 3rd - 4th graders may do independent reading/writing supported by teachers.
Musical K-4th grades: Students develop and perform an original musical for spring production
Terebinth Integral Studies with science focus: 5th- 8th grades “They will be called terebinths - oaks of righteousness, the planting of the Lord” (Is. 61:3) Terebinth is an integral study with a science focus, incorporating literature, geography, ecology and Biblical stewardship - with optional field studies on Fridays in Loudoun County (separate registration and activity fee for each field study).
Final Pick Up: All students are picked up at 3:00.
The Scent of Water Learning Community runs from September through mid-June. The calendar will follow Fairfax Co Public Schools for holidays and weather-related closings.
There will be no uniforms for Scent of Water Learning Community. Parents are responsible to shepherd their children’s clothing choices, and to ensure they have adequate outdoor shoes, boots, and attire (including outer wear).
We will offer four classes: K/1, 2/3, 4/5, 6/7/8 each with a highly qualified teacher. Each class will average a maximum of 12 students.
Tuition will be $6,200 per child, all grades K-8. Our individualized Canopy program for 9-12th grade students is $7,000/student. Please email us for more information about Canopy. Upon completion of registration forms, the first payment of $620.00 will be invoiced and must be paid in order to secure a spot in the class (new student enrollment).
Curriculum: Each year begins with an age-appropriate study of the fact of Creation and the nature of the Creator. There are two to three years of thematic units of curriculum developed for each multi-grade level. Grade level groupings will depend on enrollment. Each year of curriculum is driven by a conceptual theme or “Big Idea” (i.e. “Near & Far” – “Hidden & Revealed” – “East & West” – “The Story: MY Story, HIS Story, OUR Story” - see below). Every unit in every year features Biblical content interwoven with and illuminating math, science, history, language arts (reading/writing/speaking), visual and performing arts, PE.
K/1st: “Near & Far” - * Sample topics include: communities, cultures familiar and unfamiliar, living and non-living things, biomes, water cycle, habitats, patterns in nature, Impressionist artists and composers *Sample scriptures: “The Lord is near to the brokenhearted.” (Ps. 34:18) “Let the little children come to Me!” (Matthew 19:14)
2nd /3rd :“Hidden & Revealed” - * Sample topics include: migration, inventors, metamorphosis, nocturnal creatures, design and construction, camouflage, rock cycle, mysteries in nature and in literature, writing a mystery story, Christina Rossetti poem “Hurt No Living Thing,” Vivaldi’s Four Seasons *Sample scriptures: “The secret things belong to the Lord, but the things revealed belong to us and to our children forever, that we may observe all the words of this law.” (Deut. 29:29) “Man looks on the outward appearance, but God looks at the heart.” (1 Sam 16:7)
4th /5th: “East & West” *Sample topics include: What is “culture”? Native American cultures, European cultures, Asian cultures, African cultures, early US history, the push West, Asia, Africa, Europe, Arctic/Antarctica, Eastern and Western story forms, Coleridge’s “The Rime of the Ancient Mariner,” Smetana’s “Die Moldau,” Hokusai’s “The Big Wave,” the science of snow, explorers and explorations. *Sample scripture: “As far as the east is from the west, so far has He removed our sins from us!” (Ps. 103:12) “As the lightning comes from the east and shines as far as the west, so will be the coming of the Son of Man!” (Matthew 24:28)
6th/7th/8th:“The Story: MY Story, OUR Story, HIS Story” - Sample books include: A Kingdom Far and Clear - Cold Case Christianity for Kids apologetics series- Prince Caspian - The Silver Chair - The Hobbit - A Wrinkle in Time - Moo - A Long Walk to Water - The Player King - original and/or young readers’ versions of the following six books: The Boys in the Boat - Joni - The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind - Unbroken - Hidden Figures - I am Malala - The Sword in the Stone - The Dreamer - Beautiful Stories from Shakespeare - Beowulf – A Christmas Carol – Wind in the Willows - The History of US
* Sample topics include: 4 M’s Biblical framework for engaging with reality; identity; personality types; roles of an image-bearer; “to lead - to participate - to resist”; heroes; conflict and resolution; heat, sound, electrical conduction/resistance/insulation; the work of Stephen Gray, “father of electricity” (1666-1736) and his contemporaries; Civics; the Constitution; Christian apologetics *Sample scriptures: “For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand.” (Eph. 2:10) and “Looking unto Jesus, the Author and Finisher of our faith, who, for the joy set before Him, endured the cross, despising the shame, and is sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.” (Heb. 12:2)
Focus on Phonics (K-3rd) employs the Logic of English Foundations curriculum. 3rd – 4th graders optional independent reading/writing.
Scent of Water will not teach a full math program. Parents will need to provide this for their children. However, the Integral Studies will have bountiful math content at every level. The math series Mindset Mathematics: Visualizing and Investigating Big Ideas published by Jossey-Basse for grades K-8, the “Spielgaben” manipulatives for primary grades (see https://spielgaben.com/), The Life of Fred math series for all levels and many other resources will inform our approach to math instruction during the “Integral Studies” portion of the program, as well as throughout the Terebinth studies in the afternoons.
The Scent of Water Learning Community will not generate traditional “report cards,” but will rather provide narrative reports to parents several times a year. Additionally, we will be happy to supply a letter affirming “demonstration of progress” if appropriate, as required by home schooling laws. Parents are responsible to register appropriately as home schooling families and are ultimately responsible for the education of their child(ren).
Still have questions? Read our through our Frequently Asked Questions page.