A Day in the Life of a First Grader

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A Day In The Life Of A First Grader - Harwinton Consolidated School

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5 Things All First Graders Have in Common

Video of The Day. The Cat driver. I meet with this group for 20 minutes, or so…sometimes longer if we are really jamming with our Daily 5 choices! After our first choice or so , we meet back on the carpet for a 10 minute comprehension mini-lesson. This mini-lesson follows our comprehension skills for the week and is based on a book we read the previous day during read-aloud. Read more about how I use Duke on a Bike for making predictions. After this mini-lesson, we make our 2nd choices and I meet with my first grade-level group.

Students record their choices on this accountability log. Again, after this group, we will return to the carpet.

Reading help

Many times I will lead a writing or grammar mini-lesson but this is also the most flexible of our transitions. If students are working on something or reading something they want to share with the class, they know to bring it to the carpet. This is their signal to me that they need to share. This is one of my favorite times in the morning because it is so personal to the students and completely student driven. The last two reading groups have changed throughout the year.

Although at the beginning of the year, I had 4 guided reading groups that I met with every single day, I am at the point in the year where I will alternate my two highest groups based on how long our reading block is running. Both of these groups are reading Level J or higher and we work a lot in chapter books. Often times I will meet with one group for minutes and then, check in with the other group for minutes. I use a later read-aloud time for just-for-fun books, but this 10 minutes I love devoting to texts we will be using later in the week. There are 5 1st grade classes and during RtI we split students among all 5 classes.

These intervention groups are all small-group based. With these classes being so small, our other RtI groups are much larger, typically ranging from students. While these numbers make it tough, it pays off for our strugglers and we as a team make it work.

The Day in the Life of a 1st Grader

For reading, students are grouped by their independent Guided Reading Level. To allow for differentiation in spelling tests, we do give Spelling Tests in our RtI Reading classes. For math, we use the District Common Assessments to group students. Most weeks, this post-RtI time is devoted to writing as our team is really intentional about integrating science and social studies into our guided reading and read-aloud times. Our hands-on science experiences do happen during this time rather than the morning core. From sound experiments to testing magnets , we use the Next Generation Science Standards to guide our explorations.

1st Grade Schedule: A Day in the Life

Each afternoon, our school has a minute block of reflection built into our afternoon schedule. A Plus is something that went really well or something we are proud of. A Delta is not necessarily a negative, rather it is something we want to change in the future. You can read more about our school-wide reflection time in this blog post. From straightening crayons in a caddy to sharpening pencils, to organizing our classroom bookshelf, these classroom jobs keep our classroom looking neat. After students finish their job, they meet on the carpet with their friends or they can partner read.

We have a long but wonderful day. Sometimes it feels like a race, but I am blessed to teach in a school that values instructional time. What questions do you have for me? How does this compare to your schedule? Join me for weekly classroom updates and free resources that are just-right for your guided math classroom! Thanks so much for joining me. Happy Teaching!


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Thank you for sharing your schedule. One of the most difficult things our grade level has grappled with is scheduling everything into our day. I especially found the way that you incorporate your mini-lessons into your guided reading block of time is so helpful. I also want to check out the Lakeshore math journals.