Welcome to first grade at Neill Elementary!
We are so excited to be a part of such an important year for your child. This year we will build a strong foundation and a love for learning. We will work together as a team to help your child have a successful school year.
In reading, we are working on developing and strengthening the students’ reading skills. Guided reading is a very important part of our day. In guided reading, we work in small groups at each student’s individual reading level. This gives us a chance to focus our lesson to meet their individual needs. When students are reading independently on a level, they will move up to the next reading level.
Math in first grade focuses on developing a sound number sense in each individual learner. Each day, the class starts with Every Day Counts. This provides time to improve number sense by focusing on the calendar. During math class, the teacher conducts whole group instruction which includes daily math warm ups and number talks. After the whole group activity, the teacher will engage in small groups to enrich, reteach and reinforce concepts taught in class. During the small group instruction, the rest of the class is actively engaged in math stations, which include activities we are teaching. We are also Smartboard and computer activities and utilizing math journals to encourage all learners to be successful in math.
This year in Writer’s Workshop, the students will be exposed to a variety of writing styles and techniques. They will get to explore topics such as personal narratives and expository writing where they will write about themselves, their experiences, factual information and to inform on a topic that they are familiar with. We will learn how to focus on a small moment in time and elaborate on that particular moment with details and expression. We will also learn that as authors, we write for different reasons and we always have to keep our audience in mind. Toward the end of the year, the students will conduct their own research on an animal and write a research paper all on their own! We will also touch on poetry and even create some.
In spelling, our first grade goal is for the students to learn spelling patterns, rules/irregularities and practice strategies. We ask that students do not simply memorize the list of spelling words. Each week we will focus on a different skill. In science, students will explore the scientific process and get actively involved in hands on experiments. Topics we will explore are weather, natural resources, energy, living and non-living things, and animal life cycles.
In social studies, we will explore many topics this year. Some of the themes are community, family, culture, careers, citizenship, map skills, holiday celebrations, US and Texas.
Hook 'Em Horns!