First Grade Specials

NFS Curriculum Update :: January, 2014


First grade artists will start January learning about the art of quilting and its importance during the civil rights movement. Students will learn about the remarkable history of Gee's Bend and the diverse style of quilting that has been passed down throughout generations. Students will be creating their own "quilts" out of cut paper and fabric as well as a first grade community quilt in honor of these amazing and unique artists. This project will not only allow students to explore materials and strengthen motor skills while learning through history, it will prepare them for our next unit of study.


In first grade we will read My Father’s Dragon. The students will make a little backpack and fill it with the objects the hero uses to thwart obstacles. As we read, the students will predict how and when the objects might be used. Reading a chapter book over several weeks provides practice listening, recalling, and retelling.


Happy New Year! The kindergarten and first grade students are beginning preparations for their show, “Swamped!” which will take place in early March. Please be on the lookout for a letter and script in an upcoming Friday folder.


In Lower School PE we will continue to develop our physical fitness and work on our muscular strength with a focus on core. The class will proceed with our basketball unit with an emphasis on shooting. We will be using size appropriate balls and baskets so students will be able to focus on the proper techniques of shooting a basketball. We will also play large group games like Pilo Polo and Flag Grab. And we will begin to learn the skills of jumping and jumping rope in preparation for our 3rd annual Jump Rope for Heart event in February.


First graders started the New Year with their new unit on Insects. We will brainstorm what we already know about insets including naming our favorites. Then we’ll learn that insects have three body parts, the head, thorax and abdomen. That the head has eyes, mouth parts (called mandibles) and antennas, the thorax has joined legs and sometimes wings, and the abdomen is where they breathe. We will also learn that insects must also have 6 legs. We shall complete our introduction with a hand drawn insect of our own making. Then we will be given a bag of bugs and need to sort /classify which ones are insects based on what we have learned. Students will delve into compound eyes by first seeing pictures of insects up close and then exploring the world through different compound lenses, to seeing how different insects view the world. Finally we will learn about camouflage and how insects protect themselves by hiding and scaring their predators. Students will create an eyed hawk moth which does both.


Happy New Year! In First grade this month we will work on a culminating project for our Body Parts unit. Students will work on creating an imaginary “person” with unusual numbers of body parts. We will create them and each student will use numbers, body parts vocabulary and the verb “tener” (to have) to describe the quantity of each part their “person” has. We will record these mini-presentations to be shared!