The first grade curriculum is designed to meet the children at their particular developmental level. First graders learn and live through imagination, feeling, and movement. Therefore, first grade academics foster and utilize these elements to support strong academics, cultivate a love of learning, and foster curiosity for the world around us.
In First Grade, the students begin their exploration of LETTERS through vivid stories and images. Through practice visualizing and reviewing stories, students build strong comprehension skills even before formal reading has emerged. Images also arise from these stories, such as a mountain that takes the form of the letter M. By associating abstract symbols with concrete images, students can better master the sound-to-symbol relationship. Through collaborative story writing, exploration of word families and word patterns, and other literary explorations, students develop the skills and motivation to begin their journey as readers.
In MATHEMATICS, children discover the quality of numbers through a similar, imaginative way. They develop number sense and discover all four basic math processes (addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division) through number stories, rhythmic counting, and movement. Students also use manipulative objects to work through these processes in a tactile and active way. This approach leads to a deeper understanding of math concepts while celebrating and promoting creativity and imagination.
Through weekly garden time and inquiry-based SCIENCE explorations, students develop strong scientific skills of observation, curiosity, and reverence for the natural world (see slideshow above).
In SOCIAL STUDIES, the children learn to understand the rule-making processes in their classroom, school, and community. They learn how to be supportive, positive members of their community.
Through frequent art and handwork lessons and extensive visual arts and music integration, our curriculum holds ARTISTRY as a high priority.
MOVEMENT is another integral part of our curriculum. There is a close connection between bodily movement, spatial integration, and brain development. Therefore, through daily Circle Time and regular Movement classes, students use music and movement to develop their bodies and minds.
Students also have weekly SPANISH classes. These classes use language immersion, song, and movement to explore language in an exciting, colorful, and natural way.