“The best schools keep their eye on the prize—the kids—not just whether they are pleasing higher civil authorities. They see the job of adults as one of nurturing intelligence and empathy, openness to the world, while cherishing their children’s uniqueness. They stay close to families, and see teachers and parents as allies not adversaries. Schools for democracy are quintessentially always an act of collaboration with families and communities — expression of the grassroots vitality and ingenuity that has always made our nation great.”
– Deborah Meier
Grade 1 students’ first unit is titled Organisms. They will build on the foundation of living things by studying simple organisms at a deeper level. This week we talked about what living things need to stay alive and be healthy (food, shelter and water). We also talked about how all plants and animals are alike and different. We have been learning about the engineering process (ask (what is the problem), imagine (what are some solutions), plan (draw a diagram or make a list of materials), create (follow your plan and create something, test it out), improve (what works and how you can make it better) and students built organisms using different materials. Students are observing similarities and differences among goldfish and guppies, land and water snails, and earthworms and red worms.
Kindergarten students are working together to build structures! These students wanted to build a tall tower. They started with ideas from a book where other kids had built towers, and then translated and modified those ideas into their own tall towers.
The first grade students are working as a team to observe trees and draw the parts of the tree. They are learning vocabulary about tree parts, diagramming the trees in their
schoolyard, and supporting each other with labeling.