Welcome to the Valley View 1st grade page. Listed below are curricular highlights, student website links and teacher contact information.
Learning to read is our main emphasis. Students learn to incorporate phonics skills, reading strategies, and sight words to read with understanding and fluency. We teach reading using a balanced approach. Teachers model fluent reading by reading aloud to students daily. There are also many instances of shared reading where the teacher will read with the children using big books, poetry, and charts. Children are also taught in a small group setting through guided reading. During group, the teachers guides student reading as they read books at their instructional level.
Our spelling and phonics program has grown out of the “making and breaking of words” philosophy. We use the Systematic Sequential Phonics They Use format by Hall and Cunningham.
Spelling in first grade is an important part of the language arts experience. In kindergarten, children experimented with “inventive” or “temporary” spelling and will continue to do that during the first grade year as well. Children will also begin to learn certain conventions of spelling as well as how to correctly spell basic words. It is amazing to see first graders begin to use some of the spelling words in their writing, along with many practice spellings. This is the necessary transition that occurs in the writing process: as more words and skills are committed to memory, students begin to replace some of the purely phonetic spellings.
After the winter break, first graders will begin formal spelling lessons. Spelling lists include words with short and long vowel sounds, digraphs, blends, endings, and vowel combinations. As each new spelling skill is sequentially introduced, children will be expected to use them in their daily writing. This helps to bridge the gap between temporary and conventional spelling.
For handwriting instruction, we use techniques from the Zaner-Bloser Handwriting Program. Students are expected to use the correct upper and lower case forms. These letter formations have been taught by the kindergarten teachers and first grade teachers reinforce what was learned in kindergarten. We focus on using the three writing lines correctly and bring attention to the importance of legibility when writing.
First grade students are expected to write daily. Our goal is that our students will write a three sentence paragraph using correct punctuation and capitalization. Students will learn the steps in the writing process, paragraph writing, and creative writing. They will write for a variety of audiences and for a variety of purposes, as well as publish their own writing.
Sight Word Lists 1-9
Using Houghton Mifflin’s “Math Expressions”, our first graders will be learning many mathematical skills. We start the year reviewing numbers and shapes and solving addition and subtraction equations. As the year progresses the students work on solving story problems using multiple strategies, basic ten-structured concepts and counting coins. We conclude the school year by working on fractions, graphs, tables, counting mixed coins, two-digit addition, and measurement. In addition to our Houghton Mifflin series, our first graders are expected to master basic addition and subtraction facts 0-10.
SCIENCE & HEALTH
First graders will learn their science curriculum through Einstein kits. The three hands-on kits we use are: Weather, Organisms, and Changes.
The weather kit is used to introduce the students to observing the weather, precipitation, wind speed, reading thermometers, and cloud cover. Students also learn how the color or type of fabric their clothes are made from affect their comfort, in different types of weather.
The changes kit involves many liquids, baking soda, effervescent tablets, and many more interesting solids. At the completion of this unit our students are able to identify three states of water: solid, liquid and gas. They are also able to describe changes in matter when given an illustration.
The third kit is the organisms kit. We use this kit to teach about the needs of living things: water, food, shelter, air, and the sun.
Our first grade health curriculum guides our students to become active listeners, make good choices when it comes to personal safety, and have good oral hygiene.
We are currently in the process of adopting a new social studies curriculum. We will update this section of the web page upon completion of our adoption. The main themes we cover in first grade are: maps, U.S. heritage, and rules and laws.
|Last Updated: 3/8/13|