The number of words your first grader can read and spell increases dramatically during this year. Children can achieve this through lots of practice, at school and at home. Through talking with adults, listening to books read aloud, and discussing everyday experiences, they continue to develop the language skills that help them learn to read and write.


1. Able to recognise capital and lowercase letters and their sounds

2. Recognizes small frequently used words. Such as ‘go’, ‘have’, ‘said’. Begins to look through books at home and find words that he/she knows. The child may also make up a story using the word clues and picture cues.

3. Your child will love stories being read to them.

4. Match letters to sounds, make rhymes and recognize some sight words without having to sound them out.

5. Your child will be able to write their name.

6. Can write many familiar words. Sometimes you would notice that they reverse the direction of their lower-case letters, with the most common being ‘b’ and ‘d’. But they get most of the upper-case letters correct.

7. Participate in shared reading and writing activities (such as a parent reading a big picture book aloud and children taking turns sharing ideas about it)…

Listening & speaking

1. Learn and use new words to express thoughts, feelings and ideas clearly.

2. Your child’s vocabulary is improving in subtle ways. Their tone of voice and inflection is more natural, and they can construct passive sentences adding more variability to their speech.

3. They begin adding many more new words to their vocabulary and move beyond using single words.

4. They can listen to others for short periods of time without interrupting.

5. They understand the difference between asking and telling. And speak clearly to convey messages and requests.

6. Ask and answer questions about a story the teacher reads aloud, as well as talk about the characters, settings and major events in the story.

7. Name the person, place, thing or idea in a picture.

8. Follow the rules of conversation by listening and taking turns talking.

9. Give information about an event, topic or opinion by drawing, talking and writing about it.


1. Read contractions, such as “don’t,” and some compound words, such as “rowboat”

2. Use basic punctuation — for example, writing a sentence with the first letter of the first word capitalized and a period, exclamation point, or question mark at the end

3. Use adjectives when writing a sentence. (“The big brown dog chased my mom’s car.”)

4. Write clear and coherent sentences and paragraphs that develop an idea

5. Use correct capitalization

6. Understand the difference between words, sentences, and paragraphs

7. Able to understand the concept of more than one.

Finally, encourage your child to correct their own mistakes. When your child misreads a word, you might ask, “did that make sense?” or “does that sound right?” Then encourage her to reread a word or sentence. Of course, if your child can’t figure out a word and is becoming frustrated, simply read the word for her. If she makes an error that does not change the meaning of the book, you need not do anything. These kinds of errors show that she is reading for meaning.