Dr. Joseph A. Whelan Elementary School

1440 Mineral Spring Avenue, North Providence, RI 02904
Phone: (401) 233-1180  |  Fax: (401) 353-1465

Principal: Mrs. Amanda Donovan 

                          Quick Links

Grade 1

The social, cognitive, and scholastic development of Whelan’s 1st-grade students is apparent. They’ve started to realize the school is not only a place they go to have fun and spend time with their peers – it’s also a place where they can ask questions, inquire about a range of subject areas, and make discoveries for themselves.

Children’s love for learning starts to flourish in 1st-grade, where they dig into critical thinking skills, reading and writing comprehension, problem-solving techniques, experimentation, and build strong friendships while doing so. First-grade students at Whelan feel a sense of ownership over their education.


Grade 1 Mathematics

First-grade students at Whelan start to see that math makes everything come alive. In 1st-grade, students grow rapidly in their ability to identify math concepts, use problem-solving approaches, and interpret data mathematically. With arithmetic, we know that process is everything, and teach our students the significance of clean copy, double-checking answers, and following steps to determine the correct solutions.

Student confidence is important to us at Whelan, and we instill self-assurance into our children’s everyday routines in school. That translates directly into subject areas including math, where confidence paired with accuracy is key.

Grade 1 English Language Arts

To help our 1st-grade students at Whelan become proficient and independent readers, we make sure they have a wealth of literature within reach. The youngest students at Whelan learn the value of letters, words, and whole thoughts through attentive discussions and learning about the “power of the pen” – or pencil. We all need an eraser sometimes.

Students in 1st-grade make the discovery that when reading, they can be “transported” anywhere in the world – stories allow readers to do that. Reading also introduces them to new people – characters – with their own stories to tell. Students start to notice that text and literature is surrounding them everywhere, and will be the first to tell (or ask you) about the words, directions, and phrases they see.

Grade 1 Science

Walk into a 1st-grade classroom at Whelan, and walk into a “work” zone, where students are building, deconstructing and testing. You can feel the excitement in the room when students share their findings, and can hear the follow-up questions students have for one another when discussing what they’ve created or discovered.

We offer plenty of hands-on activities and allow students to dig deeper, ask more questions, and truly act as engineers and scientists. Our educators know when to guide students through their scientific explorations, and when to move out of their way. Teachers at Whelan encourage students to share their ideas and theories and promote open dialogue with their fellow student scientists. At Whelan, our students aren’t just at the table when it comes to their education – in many ways, they’re learning how to lead the table.

Grade 1 Social Studies

Evolve. What exactly does that mean? To 1st-grade students at Whelan, it means a number of things: Students are adapting to their surroundings more and more at school, they’re learning to open their minds when learning about new content areas, and they are taught about ways society has progressed when learning about world events of the past and how those timestamps are important to present day.

Students start to see that history is more than a date in time – they see how people can and do make an impact on their communities, and start to realize they can do the same even at their young age. Diversity and historical figures become more than just key words in a textbook.

Grade 1 Teachers

Mrs. Cheril Smith


Mrs. Cathryn Mariorenzi