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First Grade | Writing Skills

How is My Child Performing in Writing?

Your child’s teacher should be able to provide samples of student work and describe if they are meeting the goals for writing. If you are worried that your child’s writing is not developing, schedule an appointment to meet with the teacher immediately to tell them your concerns.

1st Grade Writing Goals

While all children develop at different rates, these are goals to help you understand how writing should be progressing during the school year.

Beginning-of-year Goals

  • Write their first and last names.
  • Hold a pencil correctly (Check out “The Pinch & Flip Method” if they need practice.)
  • Write from left to right on paper and continue to the next line.
  • Use “invented spelling” or write down the sounds they hear in words. For example, journal might be spelled “drenurl”.
  • Create a story using pictures and words.

Middle and End-of-the-year Goals

  • Instead of a few words, stories have sentences.
  • Children can practice the three kinds of writing: opinion writing, informative writing (stories that are true with facts, recipes or explaining how to do something), and story writing (called “narrative writing”).
  • Students can go through the writing process, meaning they think about what they want to write, write down their first ideas, look back over their work to fix mistakes, and then add details and pictures. At the end, they read it to a friend, the teacher, family member or the entire class.
  • They are able to write their answers to questions. They can begin to look up facts and write down their observations.


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