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560 Concordia Avenue
St. Paul


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First Grade

Welcome to First Grade!
First Grade, where fun and learning go hand in hand!


Reader's Workshop: 
Teachers College Readers Workshop is the literacy curriculum we use to help our students learn reading strategies to become better readers. Reader's Workshop begins with a 10 minute whole group mini lesson focusing on a reading strategy followed by an activity on the focus and 30 minutes of independent reading. Students are given the opportuity to apply what they just learn and demonstrate independent growth by responsibly selecting appropriate reading level books. 

Writer's Workshop: 
We also use Teachers College curriculum, Writers Workshop, for writing instruction. It follows the large group mini lesson and independent writing time detailed above. We start the school year with the small moments personal narrative unit where students will explore who they are as writers.

Everyday Math:
We will be using the EVERYDAY MATH curriculum which was developed by the University of Chicago School of Mathematics project. Everyday Math uses a broad, rich, and balanced approach in giving our students the skills needed to be successful in math. This year we will also be doing a daily math review using the Five Easy Steps Curriculum. We augment the Everyday Math curriculum with a Math Facts program. Our Math Facts program focuses on assuring students reach automaticity with basic addition and subtraction facts.

Social Studies and Science: These subjects are integrated into our daily PYP units of study.

Scholar Coach Program

Your child’s classroom will have a Scholar Coach working alongside their teacher this year. Scholar Coaches provide 1:1 tutoring for K-3 students in reading skills. This tutoring may be provided virtually or in person depending on the current status of the SPPS district. Scholar Coaches are part of the AmeriCorps network of service and Reading Corps.

In addition to 1:1 reading tutoring, Scholar Coaches also support core instruction and social emotional learning in their classrooms. Examples of what support a Scholar Coach might provide are Read-A-Louds, math help, writing assistance, and small group or class-wide phonics interventions as well as participation in the classroom community though classroom meetings.

We are excited to offer the Scholar Coach program at Benjamin Mays and look forward to this partnership with families, students and teachers.

Our first grade Scholar Coach is Ms. Sohvi.

Learning at Home

Mays Family Days - Math, Reading, Writing support/resources for learning at home 

In This Section

Primary Years Programme

Throughout the year, students will explore six Transdisciplinary Themes:

  • How the World Works
  • How We Express Ourselves
  • How We Organize Ourselves
  • Sharing the Planet
  • Where We Are in Place and Time
  • Who We Are

Useful Links

Homework Policy

Students are expected to read to an adult, or older sibling, each night for 20-30 minutes. Students recieve a reading log every month, through the Pizza Hut Book It program, to be filled out each night.

The reason behind reading to an adult is so they can check for comprehension. Each student has been given a book bag to take between school and home each day. Students check their book bag in with the teacher and then change out books in the leveled library so they are reading books at their specific reading level.