First Grade

First Grade

The first grade curriculum at Rutgers Preparatory School strives to instill the basic skills in all curriculum areas.  With this foundation intact, enrichment experiences are offered so that the child can apply her/his knowledge through exciting activities.  For example: our mammal unit affords the children experiences not only in science but also incorporates art, math, writing, IDEAS and literature.  The children write mammal reports, create mammals, and read mammal stories.  There are ongoing discussions in the classroom where children and teachers explore the learning process together.   

Reading/Language Arts
The first grade reading curriculum combines phonetic instruction and literary activities.  Strategies that develop both literal and inferential comprehension are stressed, as well as decoding skills and vocabulary development.  Students respond to literature in a variety of ways.  They present plays, rewrite story endings, create book reports, and examine the story elements (setting, characters, problem, events, and resolution) of a book.  The children are encouraged to read at home every day.

Much emphasis is given to the writing process.  The children make their own books and keep journals.  Verbal and written expressions are important life skills and are encouraged throughout the first grade.  Students learn and practice the Zaner Bloser manuscript formation of letters and numbers.  Keyboarding and word processing skills are introduced and students explore various computer software programs that help in the writing process.  

The first grade program emphasizes the basic concepts of addition and subtraction, measurement, geometry, estimation, problem solving, telling time, graphing, and counting money.  Base 10 Blocks, Unifix cubes, tangrams, pattern blocks, and calculators are just a few of the manipulatives students use to develop their understanding of concepts and learn problem solving strategies.  How one arrives at an answer is as important as the correct answer.  The children talk about the processes they use and learn to apply their skills in a variety of problem solving activities. 

Students learn to observe and explore their surroundings, to test their observations, and to “discover” basic concepts utilizing the campus as a laboratory.  The children learn to conduct simple experiments.  The following units are studied and integrated throughout the curriculum: mammals, pumkins, water cycle, birds, trees, the solar system and matter.  Seasonal changes, environmental concerns, nutrition, and the weather are also addressed.  Nature walks are taken around campus.  

Social Studies
Social Studies is integrated throughout the program.  Many lessons reflect a multicultural theme to foster an awareness and appreciation for different cultures.  Other units of study include; feelings, map skills, holidays, safety issues, and our state: state bird, tree, capitol, and seal.  A student’s personal development and respect for others are also important elements of the curriculum.

Special Subjects
STEAM - twice a week
Art – once a week                        
Physical Education – five times a week
Spanish – twice a week
Music – twice a week
Library – formal class once a week
Computer Lab – once a week Guidance – biweekly

First Grade Faculty

Barbara Corbin