Skills Checklist for First Grade

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Is your child headed for ‘big school’? Give them a positive experience in their new school and help to build their confidence by equipping them with the skills they need to shine. Whether they have attended kindergarten or not, first graders are expected to have certain skills before they arrive in the classroom. Use this summer to hone these skills so your child is ready when the school year starts.

Social Skills

  • Able to follow simple rules and instructions
  • Children must be confident and able to deal with change
  • Use resources and materials without breaking them
  • Is able to focus and maintain attention until a task is done
  • Must share with others and participate effectively in group activities
  • When conflicts arise, must use words to find a resolution
  • Is able to interact with familiar adults and seek their help

Writing Skills

  • Must be able to read and write their own names and some basic words
  • When given a picture, can tell a story about it
  • Must be able to perform a left to right and top to bottom progression
  • Holds pens and pencils properly
  • Must be able to say the alphabet in order
  • Must know both capitals and lowercase letters
  • Is able to sound out the letters phonetically
  • Understands a period and question mark

Reading Skills

  • Must be able to sit quietly and listen to stories read by the teacher
  • Can retell the story read by the teacher
  • Is able to differentiate the real world from fiction
  • Understands the link between written and spoken words
  • Is able to repeat simple rhymes
  • Can make predictions about what will happen next in the story (these can be prompted by pictures)
  • Is able to relate the where, when, what, who and why of the story
  • Is able to relate the story to their own lives

Language Skills

  • Must be able to sort objects e.g. by color, size etc.
  • Is able to listen for a reasonable period without interrupting
  • Able to sing songs
  • Must be able to ask questions in class and participate in discussions
  • Must use complete sentences

Math skills

  • Must be able to count to 30, write numbers to 20 and add objects to a total of 10
  • Is able to extent mathematical patterns
  • Understands how to use a ruler and a thermometer
  • Can use comparatives e.g. longer, heavier, shorter, darker etc.
  • Able to identify basic shapes
  • Is able to identify money and count it
  • Must be able to tell the days of the week and months in a year
  • Must be able to tell the time

Social Studies

  • Knows basic history and important historical figures
  • Understands that there are different cultures and traditions in the world
  • Knows the basic symbols of their country
  • Knows a world map and is able to find their country and other important countries

Science Skills

  • Displays curiosity and likes to explore and observe
  • Must understand that the sun is our source of heat and light
  • Is able to tell the weather
  • Knows basic concepts of reducing pollution, recycling and conserving nature and wildlife
  • Understands the basic structures of animals and plants
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