Lower School Curriculum Overview

1st Grade

Reading - Letter sounds (consonant, consonant blends, long and short vowels, schwa sounds, dipthongs), blending sounds to form words, plural endings, rhyming words, alphabetical order to the second letter, reading sentences, paragraphs, and books at differentiated levels. Accelerated Reader program is used to encourage reading and to improve reading comprehension.

Grammar - Capitalization, punctuation, contractions, plurals (regular and irregular), simple sentences structure, recognizing nouns, action verbs, adjectives, pronouns, possessive nouns, possessive pronouns,subject/verb agreement.

Vocabulary - Compound words, synonyms, antonyms, homonyms, dictionary skills, vocabulary as needed in the current Open Court curriculum reading series.

Handwriting - Special emphasis on handwriting accuracy as an instrument to teach and reinforce concentration and self-discipline.

Writing Process - Listen to and begin (1st quarter) and write (2nd quarter on) stories having a beginning, middle, and end with subject/verb, proper spelling, and punctuation using the different sentence structures.

SpellingBegin the year with teacher-created words lists which reflect the incremental phonics development paralling to the reading curriculum, spelling embedded in the reading stories.

Mathematics - Addition and subtraction 1-20, skip counting (by 2s, 3s, 5s 10s, 100s), tell time to the minute, word problems, comparison of numbers, writing word problems from number sentences, collect data/ create/interpret graphs, recognize/count money, volume and measurement, fact families, place value,calendar skills, addition of 3 digit numbers with and without regrouping, create polygons, geometric shapes, factions, ordinal numbers, congruency, patterns, number relationships, number order to 100, tally marks.

Science - Our bodies, magnetism, temperature cycles, moon phases, animal kingdoms, plant life, water cycle, weather, Earth Day (conservation, ecology), growth and development, insects parts, teeth, pets. Curriculum is supplemented with fiction and nonfiction literature, educational videos, field trips, and hands on experiments.

Social Studies - All about me, families, Columbus Day, Fire-Prevention/Safety, Book Week, Government (voting, patriotism, laws)American Symbols,Veterans Day, Thanksgiving (Pilgrims and Native Americans) Christmas, Martin Luther King Jr., Presidents Day, map skills, Life/Industry/Technology now and then comparison. Supplemented by fiction and nonfiction literature, educational videos, field trips, demonstrations and artictic modeling.

Spanish

In First grade, more in depth Spanish vocabulary is practiced orally through songs, finger play, books, videos and games. Children learn greetings, numbers, the alphabet, colors, parts of the body, clothing, animals, transportation, classroom terms, family, food, household terms, directional and question words. We use a workbook to read and write simple Spanish words. Computer programs provide a more interactive experience. A visit to a Mexican restaurant is one of the highlights of our unique Spanish program!

2nd Grade

Reading and Language Arts - Accelerated Reader, Scholastic Weekly Reader
Guest Speaker- local author conducts writing workshop
We use Open Court Reading published by McGraw-Hill. It is considered a comprehensive reading and writing program and is known for its systematic instruction in phonics, decoding, and comprehension. The components of Open Court include:
Phonics and Decoding
Reading and Responding to Reading
Language Arts: grammar, creative writing (using the 6 traits model), spelling, and penmanship

Handwriting - Refine printing skills 1st semester; begin cursive writing 2nd semester.

Mathematics - Reflex Math Program
Number Concepts
Computation Skills
Graphing
Place Value
Geometry
Fractions
Measurement: money, time, calendar, length, weight, capacity, temperature

Science - Scholastic Science Spin
Scientific Method, Science Fair
Life Science Field Trip to Savannah River Ecology Lab- Ecologist for a Day
Plants, Animals, Habitats of Plants and Animals
Earth Science Guest Speaker-Meteorologist
Weather
Changes in the Earth
Dinosaurs and Fossils
Sun, Moon, Stars, and Planets
Physical Science Field Trip to Ruth Patrick Science Center
Matter
Motion
Simple Machines
Magnets

Social Studies - Guest Speaker- Mayor Osbon, Field Trips: City Council Chamber, Trolley Tour of Aiken, Aiken County Historical Museum, Aiken Department of Public Safety
Study of the City of Aiken, SC
Study of the state of South Carolina
Study of the United States
-Within each of the above areas we study the following:
Geography and Map Skills
Communities
Local, State, National governments
Jobs
Community Workers
Goods and Services
Producers and Consumers
Supply and Demand
Jobs
Transportation

Spanish -
In Second grade, more in depth Spanish vocabulary is practiced or ally through songs, finger play, books, videos and games. Children learn greetings, numbers, the alphabet, colors, parts of the body, clothing, animals, transportation, classroom terms, family, food, household terms, directional and question words. We use a workbook to read and write Spanish words. Simple verb conjugation begins in second grade. Computer programs provide a more interactive experience. A visit to a Mexican restaurant is one of the highlights of our unique Spanish program!

3rd Grade

Reading - We use Open Court Reading published by McGraw-Hill. Students become fluent readers by applying comprehension, vocabulary, and word analysis skills. Students are expected to read 100 minutes per week independently and Accelerated Reader is encouraged.

Grammar - Compound/run-on sentences, paragraphs (main idea, topic sentence), contractions, parts of speech, punctuation rules, singular and plural nouns and pronouns, subject-predicate agreement, possessives, capitalization.

Vocabulary - Vocabulary drawn from reading curriculum, build on dictionary skills.

Handwriting - Refine cursive skills.

Writing Process - Students will learn the steps of the writing process (using the 6 traits model). Students will also learn about audience, purpose, genre, main idea, and details while writing opinion, narrative, and informative paragraphs.

Spelling - Weekly spelling assignments. Words generated from reading curriculum.

Mathematics - Place value to hundred thousands, rounding numbers and money, counting and comparing money amounts, addition/subtraction up to four-digit numbers, graphing and analyzing data, probability, multiplication and division by 1-digit numbers, time and temperature, customary and metric measurement, plane and solid figures, congruence, symmetry, and transformations, perimeter, area, and volume, fractions and decimals.

Science - Environment and living things, forces and motion, weather and climate, life cycles and traits.

Social Studies - Students will study from the early explorers to the Missouri Compromise in 1815. This curriculum includes the 13 original colonies, the American Revolution, and our Founding Fathers.

Spanish -
In Third grade Spanish, we continue to reinforce recognition and pronunciation of the vocabulary adding new grammar structures to build a higher level of communication in the foreign language. The emphasis is placed on a beginning level of reading and writing. The oral experience is the basis of each class. Fluency improves through story telling as students move beyond simple comprehension of pictures to thinking in Spanish as they retell a story. The activities are presented in fun and exciting ways as students increase skills: word recognition, comprehension, and conversation. The successful participation of the students in the Spanish contest in Augusta State University is already a tradition.

4th Grade

Reading - Novel reading which includes novel studies, daily reading logs, book reports, poetry, teacher read-alouds and Accelerated Reader.

Grammar - Grammar Workshop (nouns, pronouns, subjects and predicates, compound and complex sentences, verbs including progressive form and irregular verbs, adverbs, adjectives, prepositions and prepositional phrases, using good and well, negatives, possessive pronouns, contractions, capitalization and punctuation, dialogue, titles, commas in a series, parts of a letter, quotations, demonstrate and understand figurative language)

Vocabulary - Wordly Wise, vocabulary from curriculum, dictionary skills.

Writing Process - Six Traits is a model used as a tool for writing and using the writing process. The six traits include ideas, organization, word choice, sentence fluency, voice, and conventions. Types of writing include persuasive, informative, narrative, descriptive and expository. Journal writing, poetry writing, note-taking skills, publishing, and research papers are part of the curriculum as well.

Spelling - Sitton Spelling research based instructional design to ensure that students learn to spell for writing and for a lifetime. Weekly class assignments and take home task.

Mathematics - Geometric figures, organizing data, multiplication, division, basic algebra, decimals, estimation, angles, fractions, probability, perimeter and area, percents, reflections, symmetry, weight, volume, capacity, rates, metric conversions, measuring skills, map skills.

Science - Bring Science Alive! is a new curriculum that covers Plant and Animal Structures, Energy, The Earth's Changing Surface, and Waves and Information. Ecological Studies: 3-day fieldtrip to Barrier Island.

Social Studies - Veritas Press with History Cards from 1815 to the Present which include The Cotton Gin, Remember the Alamo.Great Generals of the Civil War, Cowboys and the West, The Great World War, The Space Race and many more.
Fictional and nonfictional books are assigned for book reports every nine weeks. Timeline song and chants are used as well.

Spanish - In Fourth grade Spanish, the oral experience is the basis of each class. Students are exposed to high frequency vocabulary from their lives and new vocabulary through flash cards, games, rhymes, puzzles, and story telling. CD?s and videos reinforce correct language. The activities are presented in fun and exciting ways as students increases skills: word recognition, comprehension, and conversation. The students practice pronunciation and intonation, through repetition. Fluency improves through storytelling as students move beyond simple comprehension of pictures to thinking in Spanish as they retell a story.