Art, Music, Computer & Language


Students find joy in creative expression. At Carden, they have a myriad of opportunities to express themselves using visual media. All students receive regular visual arts instruction from pre-kindergarten through eighth grade.


In the music class, students develop an interest and appreciation for different styles of music. Students learn to read and play music on various instruments.

Additionally, Carden students participate in two evening musical programs during the school year, just before winter break and in spring. All students are expected to participate in rehearsals and performances as part of the music curriculum. Participation in both performances is part of the music grade.

Computer and Technology

First through eighth graders spend time weekly in our Computer Lab staffed by a dedicated technology instructor. Computer literacy is emphasized through mastery of the various components of software and programs available. Students learn computer terminology, correct keyboarding, use of Microsoft Office and other software, and internet safety.

The computer science class at Carden School of Fresno teaches coding techniques, typing skills and an overall understanding of technology. Students solve problems and develop abilities which they will use throughout the rest of their education.

Students study simple computer science concepts through block programming. The Tynker Visual Programming Language is based on Open Web standards. Students start programming with visual blocks, then transition to JavaScript when they are ready. They build fantastic scenarios, characters that move about in a world that they create on their own with the use of Tynker’s language extensions, built-in physics engine, animation libraries, and character editors that provide children an excellent outlet to unleash their creativity.

Because typing is the basis for future composition and coding efforts, we train the students to become fluent typists in elementary school. Students learn to take simple dictation, produce documents, design spreadsheets, and create slide presentations. They are guided in their internet use so that they may become responsible online citizens and learn to use internet communication responsibly. We introduce students to internet research for images and information. In addition, students use computers to study mathematics and science.

French and Latin

One of the key goals of the Carden Method is to teach children how to communicate their ideas fluently and accurately, both orally and in writing. Learning another language enhances children’s linguistic abilities. We also recognize that we live in a global community, and it is important for students to understand different cultures and ways of thinking. Teaching a foreign language provides a broader perspective of the world.

Beginning in Jr. Kindergarten and extending through eighth grade, Carden students are offered the opportunity to learn French. This language was chosen by Mae Carden because of the many words in the English language that are of French origin. Students learn French grammar, vocabulary, conversation, and culture through a variety of experiences.

In addition to French, Carden School of Fresno is proud to offer other languages for course of study:

Latin (6–8 grades)

The study of Latin is the core of a classical education. The Latin curriculum follows a traditional scope and sequence consistent with the grammar, logic, and rhetoric stages of the trivium.

Standford 10 Series

The Stanford Achievement Test Series, the most recent version of which is usually referred to simply as the “Stanford 10,” is a set of standardized achievement tests used by school districts in the United States and in American schools abroad for assessing children from Kindergarten through high school.

First published in 1926, the test is now in its tenth version. Although in many states it is being replaced by state-created tests (mandated by the No Child Left Behind Act of 2001), it is not equivalent to most of these tests in that the Stanford series are more comprehensive in scope than the newer assessments. The test is available in 13 levels that roughly correspond to the year in school. Each level of the test is broken into subtests or strands covering various subjects such as reading comprehension, mathematics, problem solving, language, spelling, listening comprehension, science and social science.

The Stanford Achievement Test Series is used to measure academic knowledge of elementary and secondary school students. The reports include narrative summaries, process and cluster summaries and graphic displays to clarify the student’s performance and guide planning and analysis. Administrators obtain critical data to document and monitor the progress of all children and to disaggregate results according to federal mandates. Teachers receive specific information to support instructional planning for individual students and the class as well as to improve their teaching. Parents better understand their child’s achievement level and get direction for home involvement.

The Stanford 10 is one of the few tests in the United States which continues to use stanines (a method of scaling test scores on a nine-point standard scale with a mean of five and a standard deviation of two) to report scores.

The Stanford Achievement Test is not to be confused with the SAT college admissions test published by the College Board in the United States.