First Grade News

Newsletter #1: Who We Are UOI

UOI 1: Who We Are

Transdisciplinary Theme:

An inquiry into the nature of the self; beliefs and values; personal, physical, mental, social and spiritual health; human relationships including families, friends, communities, and cultures; rights and responsibilities; and what it means to be human.

Central idea: Human needs and customs shape the way people live their lives.

Key concepts: Form, Function, Perspective

Related concepts: traditions, customs, culture, life needs, diversity

Lines of inquiry

  • how family customs play a role in our lives

  • what are basic life needs
  • how families share cultural traditions

Butler's Orchard

First graders will take a field trip to Butler's Orchard in Germantown next week to attend the Fall Festival. In addition to the fun activities planned, we will look at plants around the orchard, look for ways they are similar and different from each other, and examine their parts. Students will be prompted to discuss what they know about the various parts of plants.

What Are We Learning This Unit?


Here's what we'll be learning in Math!

  • We will practice addition and subtraction up to a sum of 20, sometimes using 3 addends in addition. We'll look at some of the ways addition and subtraction are connected.
  • We will use tens frames and other Math tools to build number sense and knowledge of place value.
  • We will examine word problems and look at the language used in word problems. We'll look at what we know from examining the problem. We will ask ourselves what information is missing from the Math stories and think of ways we can find out how to obtain that missing information.
  • We will understand the meaning of the equal sign, and determine if equations involving addition and subtraction are true or false.

English Language Arts

Here's what we'll be working on in English/Language Arts!

Vocabulary Words

bold, gasp, coward, grin, empty, sharp, flee, sneaky, fortune, stare, dart, fog, gulp, host, rude, scold, serious, sly, upset, weary, area, rapid, complain, ripe, gather, seller, market, surround, price, yank

Sight Words

Each student will have his/her own set of sight words which they will be working on. Each child will work on 10 sight words at a time, which are individualized for your child. When the list has been mastered, he/she will receive the next set of 10 sight words to work on. The individualized list will be sent home this week in the blue folders. Look out for your child's list and practice reading at home, simply by saying the word and having your child look at the word and and repeat it after you. Sight words often do not follow common spelling conventions and occur frequently in language, therefore requiring a whole language approach to learning them. It simply just takes time and practice for a child to begin reading them without hesitation and recognizing them in print.


Students are learning about vowels and the different sounds vowels can make. We are also working on breaking words into syllables and sound parts in order to decode, as well as writing and forming our letters.


Students are working on composing complete sentences and using writing mechanics in their writing such as capitalization and punctuation. We are using invented spelling (builds phonemic awareness) to spell words we are unfamiliar with and to break out of our reluctant writing shells. :) With The Daily 5, students are learning to become better aware of their own ideas and brainstorming them. We will work on writing a 2-step narrative and offering some details in our writing.


We are working on answering questions about details in a text, retelling stories, describing characters/settings/events, and thinking about words that appeal to the senses in literature.


  • I can greet peers, introduce self to someone, answer simple questions.
  • I can count 1-20 and list the days of the week, recite words and phrases that I learned, recite short memorized Nasheed.
  • I am copying some characters or letter and words off the board.
  • I can recognize letters and characters, connecting phrases or words to their meaning.

Science & Social Studies

These are the concepts and skills we're working on in Science and Social Studies!

  • We will explore the concepts of culture, diversity, traditions, customs, families, needs/wants, and food/clothing/shelter
  • We will look at plants and observe how seeds grow. We will plant different types of seeds and examine the differences in how they grow and how they react to their surroundings. We will think about the needs of living things and how they allow life to thrive.


  • Group (Al-Furqan) Recognize the letters and sounds of Arabic alphabets in their initial, middle, and final position.
  • Group (Al-Bayan) Decode small words made of three to four letters with tashkeel (vowels).
  • Memorize Surah Asar and Surah Takather with fluency and Tajweed and understand the general meaning of the surah.

Islamic Studies

  • Aqeedah: I learned some of the attributes of Allah, meaning of Iman (belief).

    Fiqh: I know meaning of Islam (who is a Muslim), the basics of Wudoo.

    Seerah: I learned about prophet Muhammed's work job before becoming a prophet, marriage to Khadijah and his children.

    History: I can recall the story of prophet Nuh.

    Adab/ Manners: I know the manners of saying greeting to an older person, not calling others bad names, teasing, following teachers and parents’ directions, respecting Allah's blessings, and food.


  • Manipulate art media, material, and tools safely.

  • Create artworks that explore the uses of color, line, and shape, texture, form, and selected principles of design, such as pattern and repetition, to express ideas, thoughts, and feelings, Identify these elements in artworks and environment.

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