Once your child has mastered writing the letters and begins to improve her spelling skills, she can take the next step in 1st grade and write longer pieces in a variety of genres. In other words, in 1st grade your child progresses from knowing how to write words to becoming a “writer.” This is not to say that your 1st grader should be a perfect speller; instead she can practice her spelling skills as she further develops her writing skills. 1st grade is also the time when students begin to use technology, specifically for their writing and research. Help support this by using technology at home with your child, in an appropriate and supervised manner.
Similar to reading, writing occurs throughout the day as students learn a variety of subjects in addition to the specific writing lessons or times in class. For example, students may write about a math problem, explaining how they solved it or write about a topic they learned in science or social studies. All of this work makes them better writers overall.
In order to build writing skills your 1st grader:
- Writes a variety of texts including, opinion pieces, narratives, and explanatory/informational pieces.
- Writes with structure including an introductory sentence, supporting or accurate details and some sense of closure.
- Begins to use digital tools, including computers, to practice and “publish” writing.
- Gathers information as a class, with the aid of a teacher, to answer a question or create a shared research or writing project.
- Write Your Own Stories: After you experience something together or your child has an important moment or event, he can write a about it and illustrate it as though it is a story and share it with your family and friends.
- Answer a Question: When your child asks a question, research the answer together using books or computers (under your supervision). Then create an informative poster or collage which tells the question the answer and uses both texts and illustrations to show what you learned.
- Make a Family Magazine or Book: Your child can illustrate a book using drawings and text to describe different family members or friends. Each person can have their own page.
- Write Cards and Letters for Special Events: On birthdays and holidays your child can send people cards or letters he writes.