This week the first grade students made a social studies connection with Señora Benagas. One topic of interest regarding first grade's recent bread unit, is that people from all over the world eat some type of bread. Señora Benagas introduced the children to corn tortillas, a type of thin, unleavened flat bread made from finely ground maize (corn), a staple eaten in Mexico and Central America. Each student had a turn to press their own ball of corn mesa in a tortilla press, watch it cook on a griddle, and then eat and enjoy it hot off the grill!
This week the first grade classes each visited The Montclair Bread Company for a behind the scenes look at the work of a baker. An overview of the doughnut and baking process was presented, as well as a close-up look at the tools used, and the ingredients and the process necessary to make delicious breads and doughnuts. Each child was treated to two undecorated doughnuts just waiting to be covered with icing and toppings! This trip certainly enhanced the first grade's study of food and how people in a community prepare food in large amounts for others to purchase.
Telling time, although logical to most adults, can be confusing to children. Clocks and time have been the topic of many recent math lessons in first grade. This week the teachers reviewed telling time for the exact-hour and for half-past on the analog clock. Telling time to the quarter-hour and quarter-after the hour was introduced. The introduction lesson demonstrated to the chidlren that a pizza can be divided into four equal parts and that was related to dividing a clock face into four equal parts.
The first grade classes will travel to The Montclair Bread Company next week to enhance their study of Bread Around The World. The children are expected to wear a white MKA logo shirt and khaki pants/skirt. The trip is after lunch. The schedule is as follows:
The students in first grade began the new year by thinking about long ago. Teachers explained that for centuries, people used their bodies and parts of their bodies as units of measurement. Children worked in partnerships to measure objects in the room using non-standard units such as finger widths, hand spans, paces, forearms, arm spans, and feet. They discussed how gaps between a unit cause inaccuracy, and that close attention should be given to marking the end of the unit in order to know where the next will begin. The book, How Big is a Foot? by Rolf Myller, helped children apply their understanding of why a standard unit of measurement is best.