Welcome to First Grade! There are a lot of changes in store for your child as he/she transitions to first grade from kindergarten.
The first thing your child might mention is how different our learning centers are. In first grade, our learning centers focus on skills and strategies that have been previously introduced and are practiced through the week at learning centers. Students are expected to work independently at the centers and finish the assigned activities.
First grade has established a rigorous curriculum that includes all aspects of a balanced literacy program, along with handwriting, math, writing, and integrated unit, which covers science and social studies.
Our math time is divided between whole group, small group, and individual instruction. We support students in their development of number sense, place value understanding, addition and subtraction strategies, and problem-solving skills.
One of the most important goals for our first graders is mastering over 200 sight words. These sight words are essential to reading text fluently and accurately with comprehension. Students will spend the year working on reading these words in isolation. These word cards are sent home and practiced with an adult to support what is being taught at school.
Students begin to work with word families to recognize patterns in their spelling. Each week students will receive a list of words based upon the word family that the classes are studying. During the week, students will explore these families through daily guided activities. Research has shown that best practices include word sorts, which are done in whole group and individually.
First grade students begin to explore writing as way of expressing their thinking. Each day, students are given multiple opportunities to write in various formats, including blank books.
In the fall, the first grade students learn about the life cycles of plants through a study of apples and pumpkins. The first graders take a trip to Deal’s Orchard and as a culminating activity, parents are invited to join their child for an afternoon to enjoy a variety of activities around pumpkins.
Communication with parents and current stakeholders is a priority at Adel Elementary. Parents receive multiple newsletters each month providing information about curriculum and grade level activities and opportunities for parent involvement.