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2801 E. 16th St. | Muncie, IN 47302 | PH 765-216-7980
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First Grade

Each Expedition is approximately 6 - 8 weeks in length and challenges students to learn new skills and apply them in a way that makes learning fun.  When learning is fun, students absorb and retain more.


Expedition #1: Tools and Work

Students first learn about how tools help to do a job. Building on the understanding of what it takes to do a job, they learn how the Habits of Scholarship: empathy, perseverance, integrity, curiosity, and quality help them do work. Through "tool challenges" student learn about different simple tools. In each challenge, students are presented with a dilemma and the question, "Which tool is best for the job?"

Comparing their experiences with tools with the way people use tools for different jobs, student construct a definition for what a tool is. Students use their classroom tools and Habits of Scholarship to collaboratively create a "magnificent thing" that fulfills an authentic classroom need (e.g., pencil holder for classroom use).



Expedition #2: What's Up in the Sky; A Study of the Sun, Moon, and Stars

Why do the sun, moon, and stars inspire authors and poets? Students investigate observable patterns in the sky as they relate to the sun, moon, and stars. They track their observations of the sun, moon, and stars in pictures and videos in a Sky notebook.

Students use What the Sun Sees, What the Moon Sees by Nancy Tafuri as a mentor text to study the author's craft of writing a narrative poem. Students use their growing understanding of descriptive language, author's craft, and patterns of the sun and moon to compose a narrative poem. After completing a first draft of this poem students give feedback to one another and revise and edit their poems.



Expedition #3: Growing as Researchers: Birds' Amazing Bodies

This Expedition focuses on the big ideas: "Animals have physical features that help them survive. Animals behave in ways that help them survive."

Students build knowledge about birds as they answer the guiding question: “How do birds use their bodies to survive?” Students participate in both whole group and small group research to learn more about the form and function of key bird parts: beaks and feathers. As a culmination of their reasearch, they create and revise a scientific drawing of a specific bird.


Expedition #4: Caring for Birds

Students continue to build on their knowledge of birds, this time guided by the question: “Why should we care about birds?” Central to this Expedition are the Habits of Scholarship: empathy and integrity.

In the previous Expedition students learned about some of the problems birds face more generally and what humans can do to help them live and grow. To build on this, students learn about the many ways birds are helpful to plants, other animals, and people. Students create a piece of artwork and writing that serves an authentic needin their school or local community: a Feathered Friends Saver! This product includes a high-quality scientific drawing of a local bird that is formatted to attach to a window. When displayed in a window, the portrait helps to prevent birds from flying into the window. Students also individually create a short piece of writing to teach the recipient of the Feathered Friends Saver facts about birds.




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