• Grade One

    English Language Arts

    Students in Grade One are emergent readers and writers on the path to becoming fluent in the uses of many different forms and genres of text.  Using the components of a Balanced Literacy Approach, students in grade one receive a daily 90 minute literacy block during which they are challenged to read, write, listen, and speak independently, in pairs and small groups, and in whole group settings. 

    Specifically, in grade one, our focus remains on the basic skills of phonemic and print awareness, letter and word recognition including sound identification, and using beginning and ending consonants, as well as vowel sounds, to identify words.  We work toward this end using a variety of literacy centers, by providing direct instruction in the Magic Penny Reading Program, and by using the Fountas & Pinnell Benchmark Assessment system to insure prescriptive instruction at each student’s individual reading level.

    The focus of English Language Arts instruction at any level remains NYSED Core Curriculum and challenges students to read, write, listen, and speak for information and understanding, for literary response and expression, for critical analysis and evaluation, and for social interaction. 


    The Elementary Math Program in the North Tonawanda City School District provides a comprehensive curriculum that is aligned to the New York State Standards for Learning. The Elementary Math curriculum focuses on foundational mathematical reasoning skills beginning with number sense and operations, geometrical shapes, measurement, patterning and sequencing, problem solving, and reasoning. Building on these foundational skills each year, we provide students with explicit, grade level instruction in our daily 60 minute math block.

    Specifically, in grade one, our focus remains on the basic skills of number and geometric shape recognition, counting, number systems, problem solving, reasoning and proof, and patterns, relations, and functions.  We work toward this end by providing instruction using visuals and manipulatives while encouraging students to communicate using the universal language of math.

    The focus of Mathematics instruction at any level remains the NYSED Core Curriculum through which teachers provide students with the knowledge and understanding of mathematics necessary to function in a world very dependent upon the application of mathematics.  Instructionally, this goal translates into three components:

    �� conceptual understanding

    �� procedural fluency

    �� problem solving. 

    Social Studies

    The Elementary Social Studies curriculum provides students with opportunities to confront questions about humankind and the world. As part of the New York State Core Curriculum, students engage in the study of history, geography, economics, government, citizenship and civics.  Concepts and themes explored at the elementary level begin with the study of families, communities, local places in the North Tonawanda community and the Western New York region, citizenship, rights and responsibilities, and rules and laws.

    Specifically, in grade one, students learn about the many aspects of their school community and the community in which they live and the accepted behaviors and rules that govern them.  Students also learn about the economy or how people earn money to purchase goods and services thereby supporting their community.  They also learn about the many types of families that make up a community.  Finally, students are exposed to national symbols and how to navigate and read a map or globe.


    The Elementary Science Program in the North Tonawanda City School District provides a comprehensive curriculum that is aligned to the New York State Standards for Learning. The Elementary Science curriculum uses Scientific Inquiry to explore broad topics of the physical setting and the living environment. Students use simple equipment and tools to gather data and extend their senses acquiring simple skills such as how to observe, measure, connect, record and report data, and to classify objects using their own rules. From their own observations, they begin to ask questions and make predictions. Students' investigations are largely based on systematic observations and simple classifications to bring order and organization to their understanding. As students develop concepts and vocabulary from such experiences, they develop the ability to ask meaningful questions, investigate aspects of the world around them, and use their observations to construct reasonable explanations for their questions.

    Specifically, in grade one, students learn about the Earth, its natural cycles and patterns and the weather; the concept of matter and its three stages; motion, energy, magnetism, and the forces of gravity; the concept of measurement and the attributes of length, capacity, volume, weight, temperature, and time; and animals and plants in the living environment.  In addition, grade one students also begin learning about how they can make a difference in the world through the areas of science such as going green and recycling.

    In addition to academics, the North Tonawanda City School District provides instruction in an experiential setting by offering one mandatory field trip per grade level for each elementary student.  Grade One students visit the Buffalo Zoo.