Change is the unifying science theme for the grade one science curriculum. Students begin the year with an introductory unit on FOSS Next Generation Air and Weather. The Earth Science unit is designed to introduce concepts in weather and how it affects their lives. Throughout the unit and during the course of the school year the students learn about various weather features including clouds, precipitation, wind and temperature. The students make weather observations, use simple tools to collect and record weather data, and look for weather patterns. Students also observe and describe changes that occur in weather over time, organize and communicate observations through drawing and writing, and acquire vocabulary associated with properties of air and weather conditions.
The Physical Science, FOSS Next Generation Solids and Liquids provides investigations that heighten students’ awareness of matter which makes up our physical world. Matter exists in three fundamental states: solid, liquid, and gas. In this unit students have introductory experiences with two of these states, solids and liquids. Students also explore how some kinds of matter can change from one state to another.
The Life Science unit focuses on life cycles and how organisms grow and change. Students gain first hand observations of metamorphosis as they raise painted lady butterflies and wood frogs. The students observe and study the basic structures and parts of the butterfly and learn that as with all insects, butterflies have six legs and three body parts. In early April wood frog eggs are added to the classroom aquarium and for the next several weeks the students observe, describe, study and record the life cycle of the wood frogs from egg to adult. The students compare and contrast the life cycles of the butterflies and frogs and learn that organisms have basic needs that are met by their environments.