Writing WorkshopIn Unit 1, Launching with Small Moments, students will learn routines for Writing Workshop to launch our writing program! They will be writing personal narratives (“small moment” stories) during this unit. Students will review the writing process. They will work on following the steps of choosing a topic, planning out loud, planning by sketching pictures, writing words to match their illustrations, rereading, elaborating with more detail in the pictures and words, and then beginning a new story! They will learn spelling strategies to aide in their writing such as stretch out words, read the room, and use the word wall. They will also learn mechanics such as putting spaces between words, starting sentences with a capital letter, and ending with punctuation.
In Unit 2, Authors as Mentors, students will continue writing personal narratives. They will learn strategies to make their writing exciting and interesting to read! Ezra Jack Keats will be our author mentor. We will read and discuss the craft he uses to write his books. Some of the craft techniques we will practice are: powerful beginnings, sound words, dialogue, and building suspense through repetition of words.
Reading WorkshopSeptember- Our first unit of the year is called Readers Build Good Habits. Our goal is to inspire kids, to help them feel secure, safe, and confident that they will become strong readers. We push children to read longer each day, helping them grow to be stronger and stronger. We also encourage children to reread their books, staying focused for longer stretches of time. We teach children to reread to gather information from the pictures, noticing things they may have missed on a first reading. We also show children that rereading helps them to be more fluent and sound like the character speaking in the story. Partner work is also part of the reading workshop time. After reading independently, children may share their book with a partner: they may tell each other about their book, showing their favorite part, and then reading it together.
Another goal is to teach children that readers make pictures in their minds as they read. Before readers read a book, they look at the cover, read the title, look at the first page and begin making pictures in their minds of how the story might go. They learn that the picture in our mind might not match the story as we read, and we get ready to revise it when that happens, to ensure that we get the text’s intended meaning.
Read-alouds play a very big role in first grade. Children are taught they have an important responsibility to think and talk about the book that is being read. Teachers model how to make a prediction in a book by looking at the pictures and title and envisioning what you think it will be about. We teach how to predict and revise and/or confirm that prediction as we read through the text.
Reading – October / NovemberUnit Two is called Tackling Trouble: When readers Come to Hard Words and Tricky Parts of Books, We try Harder and Harder. In this unit of study, we revisit the strategy work children learned in kindergarten and teach children more sophisticated strategies that will help them read more challenging books. They will become more reliant on word-solving strategies that use what they know about phonics. Word study begins this month as well, so children will be learning more about letters, letter sounds, and parts of words. The most important goal will be to make sure readers are active problem solvers. To begin, readers prepare before they read. They look at the title, and cover and pictures in the book to get a good idea about the meaning of the book. By helping children get themselves ready to read, we are helping them figure out new and tricky words. We are helping children use meaning as a way to decode unknown words. Next, we remind children of their knowledge of letters and sounds, suggesting that they use phonics clues, such as beginning letters, ending letters, or word parts. During word study lessons, children will be learning spelling patterns such as _at words. They can use this information to read other words with the same spelling pattern. We also are building the children’s sight vocabulary with high-frequency words. They will become increasingly better readers as their sight vocabulary grows. Another important goal is to understand that readers use more than one strategy at once to tackle the hard words and tricky parts of books.
MathChildren begin the year reviewing numbers from 1-20. They will be exposed to number words as well. Children will count in a variety of ways- 1's, 2's, 5's and 10's forward and backward. The children will learn how to count on from 5. The children will learn how to count on from 5 with various representations by tally marks, minutes on a clock and dominoes. We continue to work on extending patterns by drawing the next shape in the sequence and finding which part is the "repeat".Social Studies
In September, we have been building our classroom community. We have created class rules which help the children to work independently, cooperatively and safely. We have also been choosing a king or queen for the day. To start this daily activity, the children will ask the king or queen questions to try to learn more about them. After all questions have been answered we look at the child’s name and discuss what we notice. We look at consonants, vowels, blends, and digraphs and use names as a reference for spelling and writing. Then we write about the king or queen during a shared writing, where the teacher and the children share the pen and each writes part of the interview. Finally, we read what we wrote.
In September, we will be learning about the life cycle of an apple. We will read nonfiction and fiction books about apples. We will also visit Riamede Farm where the children will hear more about the life cycle of an apple, go on a hayride and pick their own apples.
In October, we will continue to study life cycles. We will be studying pumpkins. We will compare and contrast the life cycles of a pumpkin and an apple.
In handwriting, we will continue to work on appropriate pencil grip, proper sitting position for writing and proper number and letter formation.