An Example of a First Grade Science Block

I am a Waldorf homeschooling mother, just like YOU!  This was a block I made up for First Grade (a January block) and thought it may give some of you inspiration for working science in with all the writing, math and form drawing of First Grade.  This is not to tell you how to do a block, but to inspire you that it is possible to write your own blocks!  It is doable!

Songs:  We learned a song in German about the Four Seasons and practiced it every day when we started school

Festival Celebration:  Epiphany (Three Kings’ Day) – we made a Twelfth Night Cake

WEEK ONE:

Day One –  Call to school with singing and verses

Warm up with singing, pennywhistle,  bean bag math

I recited a poem about the 12 months of the year and also the standard Mother Goose rhyme regarding the number of days in each month

We went through the names of each month in order, what each month made us think of, the four seasons

Made a calendar in English and German

Finished by telling Dorothy Harrer’s “The Four Seasons”

Movement Games

Wet on Wet Painting

Closing Verses

Day Two –  Call to school with singing and verses

Warm up with singing, pennywhistle,  bean bag math

Recited poems from yesterday and looked at calendar

We wrote  a title page for the Main Lesson Book:  The 12 Months, The 4 Seasons on a golden path, all capitals for the First Grader

Re-visited story and children dressed up parts in the story

Movement Games

Wet on Wet Painting

Closing Verses

Day Three –   Call to school with singing and verses

Warm up with singing, pennywhistle,  bean bag math

Recited poems again, revisited calendar

Had pictures drawn on the blackboard of the Four Brothers from the story which my child drew into her Main Lesson Book and captioned the names of each of the brothers

Movement Games

Wet on Wet Painting

Closing Verses

Day Four – Call to school with singing and verses

Hiking in the morning to really feel the weather and see its effects on the plants and animals of our area

Nature Arts and Crafts – made ice bowls, told the story of Dorothy Harrer’s “The Snowflake” after crafting

Closing Verses

WEEK TWO

Day One-  Call to school with singing and verses

Warm up with singing, pennywhistle,  bean bag math

Recited poems from last week

Talked about looking at each Season separately, this week we thought about fall, what season fall came before,  what season comes after fall, what months are in fall, what we associate with fall

Told the story “The Littlest Gnome” and “The Second Gnome” together as one story from Margaret Peckham’s “Nature Stories”

German Practice

Nature Arts and Crafts

Closing Verses

Day Two –  Call to circle with singing and verses

Warm up with singing,  pennywhistle, bean bag math

Recited poems from last week

Re-visited the story and modeled with beeswax elements from the story while I recited some gnome verses!

Movement Games

Nature Arts and Crafts

Closing Verses

Day Three – Call to circle with singing and verses

Warm-up with singing, pennywhistle,  bean bag math

Recited poems from last week

Re-visited story

Drew picture in Main Lesson Book of scene from story representing Fall and captioned scene with part of a poem, “ Summer is flying,/Autumn is here,/This is the harvest of all the year.”  (written with all capitals for the First Grader).

Started to move into Winter…what the animals do in Winter?  What animals do we see in Winter?  How do we help our animal friends in Winter in our backyard?  Where are the flowers?  What is Mr. Sun doing?

Told the story of “Shingebiss” – this story is  in many sources, Winter Wynstones has it, the Waldorf Association pink Kindergarten book has it, it may be  available on-line, but the music with it is wonderful and I don’t think that is posted on-line anywhere.

Spanish Practice

Nature Arts and Crafts

Closing Verses

Day Four  – Call to circle with singing and verses

Warm up with singing,  pennywhistle, bean bag math

Revisit Shingebiss, act it out!

(We live in a fairly snow-less area, so we made “snow” in a plastic sensory table, but if you had real snow it would be great to go and build snow forts).

We also cut out paper snowflakes.

Movement Games

Nature Arts and Crafts

Closing Verses

DAY Five – Shortened Day

Call to circle with singing and verses

Revisit story

We drew in our Main Lesson Books a winter scene from Shingebiss and wrote this caption, “Now that Winter’s/Come to stay/Little Birds must fly away.”

We did some wet on wet painting in blue and coated it with Epsom salts that leaves crystals behind as it dries.

One thing we did over the weekend was to make a little diaroma in a shoebox with Shingebiss (made out of beeswax)  in his lodge and the lake…Lots of fun!

WEEK THREE

Day One – Call to circle with singing and verses

Warm up with pennywhistle, singing, bean bag math

See if we can recite poems from beginning of block

Tell story of  “The Prince of Butterflies” by Dorothy Harrer

We moved like butterflies, rolled each other up in silk cocoons and otherwise had a great time!

German Practice

Candlemas Crafts

Closing Verses

Day Two – call to circle with singing and verses

Warm up with pennywhistle, singing, bean bag math

Recited poems orally from beginning of the block

Make a caterpillar/butterfly puppet show from Suzanne Down’s book “Around the World with Finger  Puppet Animals”

Re-visited our story!

Spanish Practice

Candlemas crafts

Closing Verses

Day Three – call to circle with singing and verses

Warm up with pennywhistle, singing, bean bag math

Recited poems

Revisited story and drew a picture of Twig and Dame Nature from the story with the caption, “Trees get back their leaves/And out came bees and birds.”

We cut out felt shapes of waterfall, pool, wide stream, wide river with boats, ocean and then I told the story, “The Lazy Water Fairy” with these props about Summer.

Candlemas Crafts

Baking

Closing Verses

Day Four – call to circle with singing and verses

Warm up with pennywhistle, singing, bean bag math

Recited poems

Revisited story and acted out the parts of the different kinds of fairies

Candlemas Crafts

Closing Verses

Day Five – call to circle with singing and verses

Warm up with pennywhistle, singing, bean bag math

Recited poems

Revisited story

Drew in Main Lesson Book with caption, “The Golden Sun so great and bright/Warms the world with all its might.”

Candlemas Crafts

Closing Verses

 

Unfortunately, I am not sure from my notes at this point where the poetry came from.  I am wondering if these came from poems from Eric Fairman’s Grade One Path of Discovery book which I lent out to someone so I cannot check and see if they are in there!    If anyone knows, I would love to post the reference!

The point of this is NOT to say this is how you should do a block or whathaveyou but to point out it is possible to create your own blocks!  Get inspired in your planning!  For example, there are so many different ways one could have approached this block!

I am up to February in writing lesson plans for a second grader and a kindergartner, where are you these days??

Many blessings and peace,

Carrie

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6 thoughts on “An Example of a First Grade Science Block

  1. I think this has some good ideas for a mixed age block with with a 3rd grader doing a main lesson on time and a K or 1st grade child. (obviously without any writing for the K child.) I have gotten pretty well through December with my planning for 3rd grade with my oldest daughter. Haven’t filled in yet with any kindergarten activities for my 5 year old, but I will certainly not forget her! We love Dorothy Harrer’s stories too. Thank you for sharing.

  2. This is lovely Carrie, thank you – I have a son in a Waldorf School – Class 1 and a 4.5yr in K. Reading this really makes me feel like I am missing out since I don’t homeschool. At times I think I would like to and other times I think defintely no. I do do activities/nature stuff/andwork/painting with my boys on the weekend and they mostly freeplay together afterschool – maybe baking or handcraft if they request it. Plus I am aware of not giving them another ‘shift’ of work after school, just for my sake. I subscribe to Melissa’s and Mrs M’s waldorf homeschool Ed groups. I do wonder though how Waldorf Mums (who don’t homeschool) can incorporate some of this wonderful learning without overdoing it with the child.
    In the start of the holidays I usually do a pictorial mind map with the family with what we would like to do and place it on the wall in the kitchen. When there is a lull during the holiday it helps remind me. Maybe I should ‘plan’ activities for our weekends so we actually do some of these things??
    What are your thoughts?
    Alison-NZ

  3. Pingback: Planning 101: Planning for Fall « The Parenting Passageway

  4. Thanks Carrie ,this is awesome.Wondering which Dorothy Harrer book has “The four season story”.I have her nature story book but it is not there.
    Thanks

    • Ba, I think I got it out of her “verses and stories” book – it is spiral bound.
      Hope that helps,
      Carrie

  5. Oh, this is such a treasure! I’m hoping to write my own lesson blocks as well for the first time this upcoming year, with a 3rd and Kindy. After using a Waldorf curriculum for K-2 with my oldest I feel like I have a grasp on how to layout my blocks, but this helps me see where to use all those verses I’ve been collecting! Thank you very much for posting this! I really love that you write your own blocks- you’re so inspiring! I would love to see more examples like this, if you have any that I may be missing in my search here.

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