TheLastWate... , Parent asks:

1st grade readiness

My son is going into 1st grade next year, and I need some help on supplies and what the expectations usually are in 1st grade.
In Topics: Back to school
> 60 days ago



Jul 3, 2014
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What the Expert Says:

Hi! This is a good question, and it is one that I wish more parents consider.  

Much of the country is moving towards the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) or a version of them.  I suggest you read through the standards for first grade.  You can find the CCSS at  This site has not only the standards, but also information for parents.  

Also, LessonPop (my company) has a tool that you might find helpful called Common Core Discussion Stems.  It has discussion starters that you can use when you are reading any type of text with your son.  It is easy to use.  You can check it out by going to  This product focuses on the reading standards.

It is also important to read, read, read to your son.  Go to the public library and check out lots of books.  Most libraries allow children to get their own library card at the age of 5.  Not only will your son love to check out his own books, it teaches responsibility.  Select books you can read to him and books he can read on his own.  Even if he hasn't learned to read yet, he will "read" by learning to handle the book the right way, turn pages, tell you want is happening based on the pictures or illustrations.  Have both fiction and nonfiction (informational text).  Have a discussion after reading.

While at the library, check out some audiobooks.  This is a great way to pass time in the car and for your son to practice his listening skills.  There is so much going on when listening to books - fluency (how the reader is reading the text), sense of story (knowing there is a beginning, middle end), understanding problem solution, etc.

I don't have many ideas for math, but one thing you can do is start to develop a sense of numbers.  What I mean by this is when you are in the kitchen, fill up the sink and allow your son to use measure cups, spoons other containers to see what holds more, what holds less or even the same.  

You can also have a list of numbers and have your son add one more to that number and say it out loud.  for example, you point to the number 5 and your son says 6.  Once he gets the hang of that, have him add 2 or double that number.  You can also have him do this activity by subtracting 1 or divide half.  If he has a competitive edge, time him and the chart his results.

When you are at the grocery store, talk about money.  What is the price of the cereal he wants?  Which eggs cost the most?  Talk about coupons.  

Hope I've given you a few ideas.  Have fun!

Barb Kruger

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