Grades 1-4

First and Second Grades

English Language Arts
Building a strong foundation for literacy involves a number of activities that assist the student with word identification, the process of determining the pronunciation and meaning of a word.  The Basal reader provides students with new genres or themes as they learn to read.  The addition of trade books:   fiction, poetry, biography expands the world of the student reader.  The reading series builds student skills from early reading up to fourth grade.  Reading aloud is practiced daily and students respond orally to comprehension questions.  Students learn the skills necessary for reading for information and reading for entertainment.  The series offers thematic units such as “I’m Special,” “I’m Responsible,” and “Our Neighborhood.”  Student workbooks accompany the text and are used to develop vocabulary, grammar, and spelling skills.

Social Studies
Students focus on the various ways in which humans create self-governing communities that provide for education, health, safety, identity, and civic participation.   They generate an understanding of their own community, their place within it, and how they and their community have a relationship with the world.  Students learn that families exist around the planet, but in a variety of ways and configurations.  The ways that families live and participate in their communities are called customs.  Students learn the appropriate vocabulary for studying people and places.

Math
Students learn to identify and compare numbers.  They learn to write numbers, and understand values, and acquire the appropriate vocabulary for computing and problem solving with numbers.  They begin to acquire a “number sense” that accompanies a variety of arithmetic skills.

Science
In keeping with the outdoor field science program, students walk in forest, field, and wetland developing the skills of observation.  Year A:  Students examine the relationships of living organisms with their environment, such as why certain trees grow in certain places.  Simple experiments teach scientific concepts, for example, students will cover a section of a grass with a board to see what happens when the sun is blocked.  Students will grow vegetables from seed to understand the growth of plants.  Students will learn to draw simple illustrations of living organisms.  Year B:  Students continue to develop the skills of observation and add on the skill of data collection.  The focus is on the moon, sun, planets, solar system.

The Fine Arts
Students improve fine motor skills through a variety of projects which connect with their math, science, or social studies curriculum.

Third Grade

English Language Arts
The third grade year theme is Friendship.   Students read a variety of fiction and non-fiction, biography, suspense, poetry, and humor.  In addition to the textbook students also read class sets of chapter books.  Students learn the different skills used according to the purposes of reading:  reading for aesthetic and personal response, reading for critical analysis and evaluation, and reading for acquisition, interpretation, and application of information.  Students are introduced to figurative language.  Student workbooks accompany the text and are used to develop vocabulary, grammar, and spelling skills.

Students build vocabulary that is specific to each discipline of academic study as well as general expressive vocabulary.  Learning to write organized short paragraphs, the students will practice three of the five modes of composition: narration, description, and explanation.  Students will also begin to observe parts of speech such as nouns and action verbs.

Social Studies
Students expand on the idea of individuals and how they are connected to a local community that extends to a global community.  They examine local history as they begin to see themselves as members of a community.  Students actively participate in the broader community through a variety of community service events such as the Youth Shelter Walk, singing at the Darling Inn retirement home, Simple Gifts in St. Johnsbury, Veteran’s Day, and other events as they arise.

Math
A strong emphasis is placed on number sense using several concepts such as place value through the millions, rounding, and estimating. Students continue to build basic math functions of addition and subtraction while being introduced to multiplication and division and the relationships between each.  Strategies for solving word problems are introduced using several methods that include but are not limited to identifying extra and missing information, checking for reasonableness, and working backwards.

Science – Combined Third and Fourth Grades
Students develop scientific skills and build enthusiasm for science through hands-on indoor and outdoor activities. Students conduct simple experiments, predicting, observing, drawing what they observe, and describing what they learn.

Students learn about the seasons and the movement of the earth around the sun. Students work with simple maps and learn about cardinal directions. They conduct simple experiments with safe household powders and liquids and work with the metric system measuring volume with graduated cylinders and length with centimeter rulers. In addition, students work with vegetables:  planting seeds, caring for seedlings, and observing and drawing changes they observe.

Students are introduced to proper use of scientific tools including: microscopes, hand lenses, test tubes, beakers and graduated cylinders.  While the skills focus is constant, content will rotate from year to year so students will not repeat subject matter in grades 3 and 4.

The Fine Arts
Students explore the vocabulary of art through guided art projects.  They create a fine art reference book containing tools, vocabulary, images of representational and abstract art, art genre, and art media.

Fourth Grade

English Language Arts
Fourth grade year theme is Risks and Consequences.  Students read a variety of fiction and non-fiction, biography, suspense, poetry, and humor.  In addition to the textbook students also read class sets of chapter books.  Students learn the different skills used according to the purposes of reading:  reading for aesthetic and personal response, reading for critical analysis and evaluation, and reading for acquisition, interpretation, and application of information.  Students expand their knowledge of terms for identifying figurative language.  Student workbooks accompany the text and are used to develop vocabulary, grammar, and spelling skills.

Students continue to build vocabulary that is specific to each discipline of academic study as well as general expressive vocabulary.  Learning to write organized short paragraphs, the students will practice three of the five modes of composition: narration, description, and explanation.  Students will also expand their knowledge of parts of speech to include adverbs, adjectives, pronouns, and prepositions.

Math
While still maintaining a focus on number sense the students expand their knowledge to include using place value through the billions, rounding, and estimating. Students continue to use basic math functions of addition, subtraction, multiplication and division.  In this year a strong focus is placed on multi-digit multiplication and long division.  Students expand their skills in solving word problems through the methods of identifying extra and missing information, checking for reasonableness, and working backwards.

Social Studies
For half of the year students study regions of the United States through the eight strands of Social Studies.  The second half consists of an in-depth study of Vermont history.  The class will visit such historic sites as Fort Ticonderoga and Crown Pointe, Chazy Fossil Reef in Isle LaMotte, Hope Cemetery in Barre, and the Barre Granite Quarry.  Students actively participate in the broader community through a variety of community service events such as the Youth Shelter Walk, singing at the Darling Inn retirement home, Simple Gifts in St. Johnsbury, Veteran’s Day, and other events as they arise.

Science: Combined Third and Fourth Grades
Students will develop scientific skills and build enthusiasm for science through hands-on indoor and outdoor activities. We will focus on simple experiments where students will be asked to predict, observe carefully, draw what they observe, and describe what they have learned.

Students will learn about the seasons and the movement of the earth around the sun. Students will work with simple maps and learn about cardinal directions. They will do simple experiments with safe household powders and liquids. Also, they will work with the metric system measuring volume with graduated cylinders and length with centimeter rulers. In addition we will work with vegetables:  planting seeds, caring for seedlings, and observing and drawing changes we observe.

Students will be introduced to proper use of scientific tools including: microscopes, hand lenses, test tubes, beakers and graduated cylinders.  While the skills focus is constant, content will rotate from year to year so students will not repeat subject matter in grades 3 and 4.

The Fine Arts
Students explore the vocabulary of art through guided art projects.  They create a fine art reference book containing tools, vocabulary, images of representational and abstract art, art genre, and art media.

Leave a Reply