First Grade is a year of important transitions.  Children are encouraged to become increasingly independent as the year progresses.  In first grade, we will focus on meeting the individual needs of each child with our classroom community.


    Reader’s Workshop focuses on building independent reading skills and stamina.  Children are taught how to choose “Just Right” books, and learn strategies that will help them become better readers.  Some of the Units include:  Readers Build Good Habits, Readers Use Strategies to make meaning, Readers Read to Become Experts, Readers Deepen Understanding, and Character Clubs.  The Reader’s Workshop model includes: shared reading, reading aloud, small group instruction, and partner reading.


    Writing is based on the Writer’s Workshop model.  Our balanced literacy program includes shared writing and interactive writing.  The students learn to write through units of mini-lessons about writing genres, conventions, and structure.  Some of these units include:  Writers Build Good Habits, Small Moment Books, Nonfiction Writing, Writing Opinions and Book Reviews, and Writing Realistic Fiction Stories.  At the end of the year, each child’s writing is celebrated at an Author’s Tea.

    Word Study

    The First grade word study program includes phonics, predictable spelling patterns, the meanings of word parts, and vocabulary.  This is a differentiated instructional program which allows each child to work at his or her appropriate instructional level.


    The students will print upper-case and lower-case letters with proper spaces between words. The Universal Publishing Handwriting program is used.


    The first grade Everyday Mathematics 4 program includes a whole class lesson, partner work in math workshop, individual work and game time.  Goals of the program include:  to become proficient in math facts; to become active participants in solving problems and to learn that there is usually more than one way to solve a problem; to be involved in explaining and discussing their math problems while learning to persevere in solving problems.  Skills and concepts covered in first grade include:  counting, addition and subtraction, number stories, measurement, place value and geometry.  The program uses a spiral approach which allows for multiple exposures of skills and concepts over time, with frequent opportunities for review and practice. Additional math information can be found at:  http://everydaymath.uchicago.edu.  


    Our science curriculum follows the Next Generation Science Standards. The units of study include light and sound; structure, function, and information processing; and Space Systems. A field trip to the zoo in the spring will reinforce students' understanding of how plants and/or animals use their external parts to help them survive and grow.

    Social Studies

    Some units studied in social studies include:  Pilgrims, Native Americans, various historical figures and holidays, and Holidays around the World.  The Block Buddy Atlas is used in conjunction with lessons on geography and community.


    The units in health include the following topics:  germs, safety, healthy eating, emotions, listening, breathing and exercise.  In the Fall, a field trip to the Health Barn is scheduled .  Here the students will learn how to grow healthy foods and how to compost.  Further lessons are given on the components of a healthy diet and lifestyle.