Topic outline

  • Meet the Teacher


    My name is Mary Borders.  First, I want you to know that I LOVE teaching first grade.  There is no other job that I would rather be doing.  I have often heard people say that first grade is the most rewarding grade to teach.  I must agree!  First grade is a year filled with so much growth, both academically and socially.  It is exciting to have a part in that growth. 

    I received my Bachelor’s Degree in elementary education from Florida State University.  GO NOLES!  I also have a Master’s Degree in elementary education and my Rank I in elementary counseling from Western Kentucky University.

     In my spare time, I love being with family and friends, traveling, watching sporting events, and eating out! 

    I am looking forward to working with you and your child this year.  I know you will love being part of the Heartland family as much as I do!


  • My Philosophy



    I strive to make my classroom developmentally appropriate and centered around the needs of each individual child.

    Community of Learners: My classroom is a safe, supportive, and welcoming environment for all of my students. Students will develop independence as well as the ability to function as a member of a group.

    Positive Classroom Management: Children in my classroom will be expected to follow classroom rules and conduct themselves in a manner that is safe and respectful. Good behavior and manners will be positively recognized throughout the school day.

    Balanced Literacy Program: We will follow the Literacy First reading program.  Children will participate in a variety of activities exposing them to reading, language, and writing. Students will participate in whole group literacy instruction and differentiated small group instruction.  Instruction will include the use of literacy stations, modeled and shared skills, and independent practice.

    Hands On Math Instruction: Students' math knowledge will be supported through the use of a wide variety of materials and meaningful real world experiences.

    Thematic Studies: Science and Social Studies will be integrated into the curriculum.

    • Daily Schedule

      Our Daily Schedule


      Arrival - Breakfast- Agendas


      Attendance - Pledge-  Announcements


      Flexible Reading Groups/Literacy Centers

      9:20- 10:05

      Related Arts





      11:10 -11:40


      11:40 - 12:40


      12:40 –1:00


      1:00 - 1:45

      Whole Group Reading


      Science/Social Studies



      • Literacy Centers




        One of the main objectives of any teacher is to instill a love of reading and books in all students.  Reading requires much skill and practice, and to practice you need books.  It's simple, the more children are exposed to books, the more they learn to love them. 


        Centers are an important part of our language arts time.  Literacy centers are areas and activities in our classroom that support and enhance reading and writing. Some of our literacy centers include:

        sight word games such as bingo and concentration

         read around the room

        library area with trade books

        poem and song charts

        listening center

        spelling centers with beads, magnetic letters, finger paint, gel boards, wikki sticks, and other fun ways to practice spelling

        writing centers with various kinds of paper, crayons, markers, pencils, pens.


        • Weekly Newsletter




          April 11, 2014


          Dear Primary Families,

                  Welcome back!  I hope that you enjoyed spring break.  I heard about a lot of exciting adventures and trips. I was able to make a trip back to Florida to visit with my mom and dad for a few days.  Now that everyone is rested, we are ready for the last stretch of the school year!

                  We continued 2-digit subtraction in math.  The children have made great progress with this skill.  We will continue to review this throughout the rest of the school year.

                  The children had fun exploring with magnets this week. We have quite the group of scientists in our room.  Thanks for always supporting your child’s enthusiasm.

                  Our star of the week is Hunter.  Hunter is 6 years old. His favorite book is The Night Before Christmas and his favorite color is blue.  Hunter likes playing outside, riding bikes, and playing video games.  He also likes flying his new airplane.  One of his favorite places is the lake house. He enjoys fishing and swimming there.  If Hunter could have one wish, he would wish that is was summer all year.  Thanks for sharing your star poster with us, Hunter.  J

                   Wyatt celebrated his 7th birthday over spring break.  We wished him a happy belated birthday. 

                  This week began the last quarter of the school year.  Report cards will be sent home on Wednesday, April 16th.  It’s that time of year when everyone needs a little extra push. Please continue to encourage your child to put forth their best effort.

                  The school is collecting box tops again.  Please send in any extra ones that you may have around in your pantry.  We’ll keep our fingers crossed that our class collects the most box tops for this contest.   Thanks!

                                        Your partner in education,

                                                    Mary Borders




          • Reminders



            Homework in first grade is primarily about developing responsibility in our children. They are to bring home the assignment, complete it with a parent's guidance, and then return it. These skills will help to serve the child well later in his/her school life! 

            Homework will be given 4 days a week (Monday – Thursday).  I do not give homework over the weekend.  First graders should spend no more than 15-20 minutes each evening on homework. If your child is consistently spending more time than this, or if a particular assignment takes considerably longer, please let me know.  I have given each child a homework folder.  This folder should be returned to school daily with the homework papers.

            The following is a list of suggested supplies to keep at home for your child to use during homework time:  pencils, crayons, scissors, glue, and an eraser. 

            Please help your child develop responsibility.  After homework is completed, your child should put the homework folder in his/her backpack, ready to return to school.  Thanks for your help.


            Take-home books     

            Take-home books are sent home on Monday and Thursday.  Your child should be reading for 10-15 minutes each evening.  Each book should be read at least two times, helping to develop sight word vocabulary and fluency.  The book should be returned to school each Monday and Thursday so that a new book can be placed in the folder.  Don’t forget to sign the reading slip for your child.