In grade one the child leaves the dreamy mood of kindergarten and is ripe to take up a more traditional academic experience. The children look to the teacher as their loving authority and experience oneness with their environment and their peers. Fairy tales are shared in grade one and the child resonates deeply with each story because all is good in the end. Oral storytelling provides a basis for teaching from year to year and helps children in creating an authentic and relevant connection to the curriculum. This connection engages the children and allows them to create pictures in their imagination leading to a greater capacity for comprehension. In grade one the students begin to connect with the quality and function of letters and numbers as the teacher brings each one forth as a unique character that makes appearances throughout many stories. For example, a story of the mighty mountain will be told and the students will draw a mountain in the shape of an M, and they also will bring the quality of M to their movement and speech exercises “The mighty, mighty men marched up the magic mountain.” Multiple learning modalities are engaged giving all different kinds of learners routes to successful comprehension and daily the children have the opportunity to work both independently and in groups.
Artwork by Christa Valdez, Mountain Song Community School
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1st Grade Curriculum Components
History and Literature
Nature stories and multicultural fairy tales, traditional and seasonal rhymes and verses.
Written letters, grammar and spelling from story to imagination. Reading predicated by recitation and writing, speech exercises, phonics, plays.
Four math processes through story imagination and manipulatives, quality of numbers, counting, times tables through rhythm and movement, mental math.
Geography and Science
Nature observation through stories, poetry and walks. Awareness and appreciation of plant, mineral and animal kingdoms.
Simple form drawing based on straight and curved lines, wet-on- wet watercolor painting, modeling from beeswax.
Finger knitting, making knitting needles, knitting with two needles.
Rhythm of language, vowels and consonants, gestures, short pentatonic melodies, forming a circle.
Imaginative games, jump rope, swinging, skipping, hopping, climbing, string play.
Songs in pentatonic scale, seasonal songs on flute and singing.
Songs, games, poems and plays, cultural traditions, vocabulary and numbers.
Simple practical tasks and garden skills learned through imitation, developing awareness and respect for nature.
Food vocabulary and an introduction of food from around the world, observation of chickens and eggs, the sensory experience of food.