Grade 1 @ Mano
Students in Grade 1 engage in a two-hour Literacy block daily. This includes a consistent and integrated approach to Reading, Writing, Structured Literacy and Speaking & Listening. All components of the Big 6 areas—oral language, phonological awareness, phonics, vocabulary, fluency and comprehension—are carefully integrated and embedded into our comprehensive literacy program.
Students participate in handwriting, sound pack review (Daily Review), Heggerty (Phonemic Awareness), decoding and encoding practice and spelling of Red Words (multi-sensory approach to words that do not follow a specific rule). Students also participate in shared and modelled writing and independent, small group and 1:1 conferencing during Writing.
In Grade 1, students are developing their understanding of numbers and patterns, whilst also developing other mathematical skills. They participate in open-ended tasks and Launch, Explore, Summarise lessons where students understand the mathematical concept being taught through a self-exploratory lesson. Students enjoy using hands-on materials to solve problems and will solve mathematical questions in a range of ways.
Students will also be introduced to and encouraged to apply a range of problem-solving strategies including: find and highlight key words, draw a picture, make a model, draw a table, write a number sentence and draw a number line.
In Grade 1, students explore an overarching ‘big question’ each term. This culminates in an authentic action task by the end of the term, allowing students to explore an interest of their own. Some topics covered include Geography, History and Cultural Diversity.
Student wellbeing is at the forefront of everything we do. We have dedicated sessions to support our students’ wellbeing in addition to consistent strategies and visuals in each of our classrooms. Some examples of how this can look in Grade 1 include our:
- Ready to Learn Scale – Students ‘check in’ with their emotions each morning on our Ready to Learn Scale. This becomes a springboard for discussion, support and strategies that can be implemented to best support our students.
- Ready to Learn Plans – Students will co-construct a Ready to Learn Plan with strategies that they can draw upon to assist them in de-escalating and return to a ‘Ready to Learn’ state.
- SWPBS Matrix, Milestones & Rewards – Students can individually, and collectively, work to display and model our SWPBS expectations. Students redeem tokens for stars on their Individual and Class Star Charts. Upon reaching different milestones, students can ‘cash’ these tokens in for a reward.
- Weekly SWPBS and SEL sessions – Students will engage in a 1-hour session weekly that encompasses our SWPBS expectations (around positive behaviour), includes knowledge and skills from Resilience, Rights and Respectful Relationships (Department SEL program) and draws upon the Berry Street Education Model.
- Lunch Time Clubs – We offer seven clubs throughout the week that provide students an inclusive, supportive and fun environment to create new friendships and social connection during each lunch time.
Every class during the week has the opportunity to participate in a Library session. While in the Library, a book is read to the students to encourage a love of reading. Students are then encouraged to explore the Library, borrow a book and take that book home to enjoy it with their family. Books are normally borrowed for a week and students must have a library bag to borrow.
Students participate in a one-week swimming program during Term 4. This program is held at the Geelong College Pool facility. Students are placed into groups based on their individual levels and are taught a range of survival strokes and skills in the water.
Big Day Out
During Term 1, students participate in a Big Day Out, where students spend the day engaging in a range of fun activities that promote friendship and collaboration with their new classmates and wider cohort. Within this day, the Grade 1 students partake in an excursion, where they will spend time exploring and playing, before being treated to a delicious lunch back at school and fun afternoon activities like a movie, games or a dance party!