1st Grade Curriculum
Our Bible curriculum, Purposeful Design published by ACSI, with the theme of “God’s Gifts to Me,” uses familiar Bible stories that illustrate God’s gifts of our world, families, leaders, helpers, His Son, His Word, a way to live, His Church, and our abilities. As with all levels, the Bible stories and everyday anecdotes were written by a gifted author, to positively influence the unique character of this grade level. Students are provided with a variety of colorful, innovative materials from which they make booklets, mobiles, baskets, puzzles, flash cards, and much more. We learn a memory verse every week.
Reading begins by reviewing the consonant and vowel sounds, becoming reacquainted with the vowel sounds learned in kindergarten, and building on basic blending skills and vocabulary. Children will progress through more intricate use of blends, digraphs, and vowel combinations as they continue to form whole words. Attention is given to fluency, comprehension, sequencing, and study skills. English skills include the following: alphabetizing; identifying action, naming, and describing words; recognizing asking and telling sentences; and capitalization. Spelling words consist of sight words and words that reinforce the phonetic skills being taught. We start out in handwriting by learning how to form D’Nealian letters and numbers neatly and correctly. Thinking Maps, graphic organizers, are implemented in organizing thoughts, ideas, and materials in all academic areas. They are basic to forming sentences and writing paragraphs in the writing process program, 6+1 Trait Writing.
The math program is success-oriented. Daily practice is provided in skills related to the calendar, counting, patterning, weather, reading graphs, telling time, and counting money. Lessons include written practice and number fact practice, as well as hands-on activities and cooperative group activities. Problem solving, word problems, place value, and a foundation of numeration and number concepts to 100 are included on a regular basis. Children are expected to master basic addition and subtraction facts.
Our social studies and science units are very flexible, focusing on the Virginia Standards of Learning. We cover subjects such as “me,” families, seasonal events, health, animals, plants, and insects. Completing projects and displays and taking field trips which are closely related to these academic units are part of the first grade experience. Scholastic News is also used to teach current events.