Wednesday, 20 November 2013

How would Common Core Standards Affect Your First Graders Writing Skills?

As a parent you must have felt amazing when for the very first time your child scribbled something on paper. What is more amazing is how quickly children grow up. If your child entered first grade this year, you will see him/her not just write words but will be amazed at his/her capability to use daily vocabulary. 

The first graders will learn to organize entire sentences and form paragraphs too as per the Common Core Standards.

As per the standards for writing skills in English, the first graders need to learn formation of spellings and basic grammar. They will learn to express themselves through language. They will also learn to organize, reorganize, revise and edit their thoughts in writing with help and guidance from adults.

The Common Core Standards lay a clear guideline on what students should learn in which grade. They carry a detailed description on the Mathematics and English teaching. The Common Core Standards have been adopted by 45 states across entire United States.

My child has yet not mastered all that was taught in kindergarten

If your child is a bit weak and still needs more practice with alphabets or sounds, you need not be tensed or worried. Though the guidelines for the first graders do set the standards seemingly high, grade one is a progression to the kindergarten.

The year begins with scoring the alphabets and the sounds combined to create the words. He/she will be able to refresh a few words that are used on daily basis (we, me, he, now, etc) that were taught in the kindergarten as well. 

First grade is the final destination to master ABC fluently along with all the capital letters (uppercase) and small letters (lowercase). Thus, by the end of first grade your child will be able to capitalize names of people and hyphenate dates.

With the clear availability of what is expected from the child as a first grader you can get him/her more help and mentoring. You can even enroll at websites such as PracTutor and spend some quality time having fun with your child while he/she catches us.  

What more will my first grader learn to write?

Next he/she will learn to use conventional spelling for common spelling patterns and irregular words. It is believed that irregular words such as ‘nt for not’ or ‘gp for gap’ help children learn better and faster before they begin using sound words.

Once they gradually transit to use of conventional spelling for irregular spellings, you should be able to see him/her write clear and definitive words. If the child has trouble forming or grasping formation of spellings even after ample amount of practice he/she might be facing a leaning disability and might need help.

As per the common core standards a first grader must continue to use the phonemes (letter sounds) and you must not think of banishing them at all. He/she will also grasp use of frequently occurring affixes as a clue to the meaning of a word, identify root words (e.g. look) and their inflectional forms, sort words into categories to gain a sense of the concepts, define words by category and by one or more key attributes, identify real-life connections between words and their use, and distinguish verbs differing in manner and adjectives differing in intensity.

He/she will also learn to use sentence-level context as a clue to the meaning of a word or phrase.

The leap ahead - From words to grammatically correct sentences!

In grammar, he/she will learn to use 

  • Common, proper, and possessive nouns
  • Singular and plural nouns with verbs in sentences
  • Personal, possessive, and indefinite pronouns (e.g. I, me, my)
  • Verbs to convey a sense of past, present, and future
  • Frequently occurring adjectives
  • Frequently occurring conjunctions (e.g. and, but, or, so)
  • Determiners (e.g., articles, demonstratives)
  • Frequently occurring prepositions (e.g. during, beyond, toward)
  • Declarative, interrogative, imperative, and exclamatory sentences
You can think of first grade as a ‘complex year’ as your first grader will learn to make compound as well as ‘complex sentences’. He/she will also get to know the use of proper punctuation marks as he/she learns about statements to questions to exclamations!

You can expect more joined sentences by the end of first grade as he/she masters his/her conjunctions with use of ‘but, so, because, etc.’ 

See him/her go from alphabet to sorting of separate single words in a series, all in just grade one!

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