Welcome to First Grade: a transition from Kindergarten to the path of lifelong learning! First grade is an exciting, yet challenging, year of many firsts: losing teeth, formal testing, reading, and leading prayer services. Responsibility, independence, and social skills are stressed during this year of spiritual, academic, and emotional growth.
While first graders are introduced to the basic teachings of the Catholic Church, they experience the love of God and learn to respect all of God’s creation. They enjoy attending Mass with their seventh grade buddies.
Learning to read is the focal point of first grade curriculum. Reading is taught through a study of phonics, phonemic awareness, sight words, and an exposure to a variety of texts to balance comprehension and decoding skills. The love of reading is nurtured through the exposure to reading whether by the teacher, whole-class, in small groups, or independently. First graders engage in a variety of writing experiences to develop the freedom of writing, yet build the foundation for formal sentence conventions, spelling, and structured writing.
Number concepts, computation, critical thinking, and problem solving are the key math skills developed in first grade through our calendar activities, interactive games, and textbook practice.
The main social studies themes for first grade include community, past and present, mapping skills, and respecting God’s creation. Science is incorporated through thematic and literature units with a focus on an understanding of the world around us. Plants, animals, habitats, magnets, weather, energy, and matter are the basic units of study.
Second Grade is an exciting year when our students prepare for the Sacraments of Reconciliation and First Eucharist, and lead the congregation in the May Crowning Mass. We learn about Jesus’ parables, celebrate feast days, and study the seasons of our liturgical year. Second graders learn many new prayers in song and in American Sign Language (ASL).
Students learn about story elements as they explore Fairy Tales, Tall Tales, Biographies, and many themes/genres from our Author of the Month units. Students are exposed to many texts and decodable books to increase phonetic decoding, fluency, and comprehension. Each student uses their own Chromebook to log into the Accelerated Reading program which tracks individual reading successes throughout the year. Writing happens everyday in second grade. Our interactive whiteboard is used for Daily Oral Language (D.O.L.) every morning, and we write informative and narrative pieces and poems in our journals every week.
Major math concepts in second grade include, time, money, fractions, geometry, measurement, addition and subtraction with regrouping, and multiplication and division (2’s,3’s,4’s,5’s and 10’s). We use manipulatives and our individual whiteboards as well as many math apps on our Chromebook computers to practice and sharpen our number skills.
Second graders explore forces and machines, magnets, animal habitats (including special units on Penguins, Oceans, and Marine Mammals), Rocks and Fossils, and we apply the scientific method through a fun and interactive unit called Bubble Gum Science.
One major theme that is woven throughout the 2nd grade year is understanding the richness and diversity of all the cultures of the world. Students learn about their ancestors and prepare an oral presentation about a country/culture of their family.
The other major themes in Social Studies include units about producers and consumers, landforms, U.S. holidays, heroes and leaders, Christmas around the World, and Daily Oral Geography.
Second graders use Chromebooks throughout the year learning to keyboard correctly, sharpen our math skills, Read on Epic and test in Accelerated Reader, and create presentations/Google slides and docs from many subject areas across the curriculum.