First Grade

I Can Do It!

The foundation has been built and our First grade students are ready to demonstrate their skills and knowledge in reading, writing and arithmetic. Risk taking begins at this young age as students dive head first into challenging texts, begin writing clever stories, conduct developmentally appropriate research, and practice public speaking. Whether giving a speech dressed as a community helper or being a docent at the First Grade Dinosaur Museum, over and over again, the words “I can do it!” can be heard and confidence can be seen growing in each child.

 

A Double Dip of Academic Support

While each student at PS has a dedicated master teacher providing support and extension throughout the day, they also have access to a team of specialists trained in a diverse array of pedagogies who support, enrich and extend instruction as needed. The Academic Enrichment Team assist with assessments, monitor the development of foundational literacy and math skills, and join with the classroom teachers to further support academic development and foster critical and creative thinking. We lovingly call this extra bonus the Double Dip!

 

Kids Need to Move!

When was the last time you had to sit still for a long time? Hard, isn’t it?  At PS we believe students should have many opportunities to move throughout the long school day, so we make PE and recess a part of every day. Brain research tell us that these breaks in the day are necessary for optimizing a child’s social, emotional, physical, and cognitive development.  Where else can you build on fine and gross motor skills, learn patience waiting for a turn, negotiate rule interpretations, discover a new bug, or get lost in your own thoughts?  PE and recess, it not just about the fun.

 

See Specialists Every Day

It's not all just reading, writing and arithmetic. At PS, our team of specialists help our students to grow creatively, spiritually, and physically in Art, Chapel, Learning Commons, Music, and PE.  By reaching their hearts and minds through chapel once a week, our students develop an understanding of what it truly means to reflect God's love into the world. Whether it's molding clay into original sculpture, blending their voices in song, or discovering a new author during the weekly instruction with our specialists, our students are challenged outside of their comfort zones to recognize just how much they can accomplish.  

 

Navigating Social Well-Being

Young children, big emotions! At PS, we believe that we not only educate the mind but the heart as well. Teaching our students how to treat one another with respect, how to agreeably disagree, and how to show empathy and compassion is as important to us as the ABC’s.  If a child makes a mistake, they are always reminded that tomorrow is a clean slate and another opportunity to make better choices.  Focusing on the PS Core Values of Reflecting God's Love, Respect, Perserverance, Compassion, Courage, Integrity and Gratitude is what guides us as we grow young hearts and minds every day.

 

It's Not Just About the Test

We know that children learn by doing and that it is in the process where students learn the most.  Going beyond the standard paper/pencil test, students are invited to demonstrate their learning in a variety of ways.  Students can be found building structures, writing plays, designing obstacle courses, giving a speech, writing lyrics, or debating a point all in an effort to share their learning.  Learning is more than just supplying rote answers, it is about thinking deeply and creatively and then sharing that learning with others. 

 

Learning from the Community

Who doesn’t love a field trip? Climbing on a big yellow bus and taking off on an adventure is exciting at all grade levels.  Whether it is 4th grade heading to San Antonio to visit the Alamo or 2nd grade going to Dewberry Farm, all of our students expand their learning outside of the classroom walls. Students can just walk two blocks to get on the Metro Rail to head to the Medical Center or Downtown or walk across the street to visit the Museum of Fine Arts Houston or the Glassell School of Art. Walking to the Miller Outdoor Theater, Houston Zoo or the Museum of Natural Science is no problem either!

On Exhibit: 1st Grade Dinosaur Museum

Houston is home to one of the largest museum districts in the nation and PS is located right in the heart of it. Our goal is to one day be featured as an official Museum of Learning in the Houston Museum District but until that happens, we will continue to create our own Presbyterian School Museums. Each year every grade in the School determines a focus, completes research, learns from local experts, and then designs, creates, and installs their own grade level museum on campus. Do you enjoy the Natural History Museum? Then you won’t want to miss 1st Grade's interactive Dinosaur Museum. 

1st grade is going back in time for a month-long study of dinosaurs, paleontology, and prehistory. Each student chooses a dinosaur to research, makes use of iPads and “Dino” apps, and learns how to differentiate between fact and fiction as they discover more about their chosen dinosaur. The study culminates in individual creations of a “dino-rama” to be put on exhibit. Students also write an informative speech that is recorded to accompany their dino-rama. Each dino-rama will feature a dinosaur in its natural habitat. Be sure to check out the Dinosaur Museum - you’ll have a roaring good time!

Research is hands-on at the Natural History Museum
Dino Apps let us share our research
learning to distinguish between Fact and Fiction
Dino-ramas come in all shapes and sizes
Our Dinosaur museum has a dinosaur dig too!
everyone learns from 1st grade research