1st Grade ELA Standards


1.0 Word Analysis, Fluency, and Systematic Vocabulary Development

Students understand the basic features of reading. They select letter patterns and know how to translate them into spoken language by using phonics, syllabication, and word parts. They apply this knowledge to achieve fluent oral and silent reading.

Concepts About Print

1.1  Match oral words to printed words.

1.2  Identify the title and author of a reading selection.

1.3  Identify letters, words, and sentences.

Phonemic Awareness

1.4  Distinguish initial, medial, and final sounds in single-syllable words.

1.5  Distinguish long- and short-vowel sounds in orally stated single-syllable words (e.g., bit/bite).

1.6  Create and state a series of rhyming words, including consonant blends.

1.7  Add, delete, or change target sounds to change words (e.g., change cow to how; pan to an).

1.8  Blend two to four phonemes into recognizable words (e.g., /c/a/t/ = cat; /f/l/a/t/ = flat).

1.9  Segment single-syllable words into their components (e.g., cat = /c/a/t/; splat = /s/p/l/a/t/; rich = /r/i/ch/).

Decoding and Word Recognition

1.10  Generate the sounds from all the letters and letter patterns, including consonant blends and long- and short-vowel patterns (i.e., phonograms), and blend those sounds into recognizable words.

1.11  Read common, irregular sight words (e.g., the, have, said, come, give, of).

1.12  Use knowledge of vowel digraphs and r-controlled letter-sound associations to read words.

1.13  Read compound words and contractions.

1.14  Read inflectional forms (e.g., -s, -ed, -ing) and root words (e.g., look, looked, looking).

1.15  Read common word families (e.g., -ite, -ate).

1.16  Read aloud with fluency in a manner that sounds like natural speech.

Vocabulary and Concept Development

1.17 Classify grade-appropriate categories of words (e.g., concrete collections of animals, foods, toys). 

2.0 Reading Comprehension

Students read and understand grade-level-appropriate material. They draw upon a variety of comprehension strategies as needed (e.g., generating and responding to essential questions, making predictions, comparing information from several sources). The selections in Recommended Literature, Kindergarten Through Grade Twelve illustrate the quality and complexity of the materials to be read by students. In addition to their regular school reading, by grade four, students read one-half million words annually, including a good representation of grade-level-appropriate narrative and expository text (e.g., classic and contemporary literature, magazines, newspapers, online information). In grade one, students begin to make progress toward this goal.

Structural Features of Informational Materials

2.1 Identify text that uses sequence or other logical order.

Comprehension and Analysis of Grade-Level-Appropriate Text

2.2  Respond to who, what, when, where, and how questions.

2.3  Follow one-step written instructions.

2.4  Use context to resolve ambiguities about word and sentence meanings.

2.5  Confirm predictions about what will happen next in a text by identifying key words (i.e., signpost words).

2.6  Relate prior knowledge to textual information.

2.7  Retell the central ideas of simple expository or narrative passages.

3.0 Literary Response and Analysis

Students read and respond to a wide variety of significant works of children’s literature. They distinguish between the structural features of the text and the literary terms or elements (e.g., theme, plot, setting, characters). The selections in Recommended Literature, Kindergarten Through Grade Twelve illustrate the quality and complexity of the materials to be read by students.

Narrative Analysis of Grade-Level-Appropriate Text

3.1  Identify and describe the elements of plot, setting, and character(s) in a story, as well as the story’s beginning, middle, and ending.

3.2  Describe the roles of authors and illustrators and their contributions to print materials.

3.3  Recollect, talk, and write about books read during the school year. 



1.0 Writing Strategies

Students write clear and coherent sentences and paragraphs that develop a central idea. Their writing shows they consider the audience and purpose. Students progress through the stages of the writing process (e.g., prewriting, drafting, revising, editing successive versions).

Organization and Focus

1.1  Select a focus when writing.

1.2  Use descriptive words when writing.


1.3 Print legibly and space letters, words, and sentences appropriately.

2.0 Writing Applications (Genres and Their Characteristics)

Students write compositions that describe and explain familiar objects, events, and experiences. Student writing demonstrates a command of standard American English and the drafting, research, and organizational strategies outlined in Writing Standard 1.0.

Using the writing strategies of grade one outlined in Writing Standard 1.0, students:

2.1  Write brief narratives (e.g., fictional, autobiographical) describing an experience.

2.2  Write brief expository descriptions of a real object, person, place, or event, using sensory details. 


Written and Oral English Language Conventions

The standards for written and oral English language conventions have been placed between those for writing and for listening and speaking because these conventions are essential to both sets of skills.

1.0 Written and Oral English Language Conventions

Students write and speak with a command of standard English conventions appropriate to this grade level.

Sentence Structure

1.1 Write and speak in complete, coherent sentences.


1.2  Identify and correctly use singular and plural nouns.

1.3  Identify and correctly use contractions (e.g., isn’t, aren’t, can’t, won’t) and singular posses­sive pronouns (e.g., my/mine, his/her, hers, your/s) in writing and speaking.


1.4  Distinguish between declarative, exclamatory, and interrogative sentences.

1.5  Use a period, exclamation point, or question mark at the end of sentences.

1.6  Use knowledge of the basic rules of punctuation and capitalization when writing.


1.7 Capitalize the first word of a sentence, names of people, and the pronoun I.


1.8 Spell three- and four-letter short-vowel words and grade-level-appropriate sight words correctly. 


Listening and Speaking

1.0 Listening and Speaking Strategies

Students listen critically and respond appropriately to oral communication. They speak in a manner that guides the listener to understand important ideas by using proper phrasing, pitch, and modulation.


1.1  Listen attentively.

1.2  Ask questions for clarification and understanding.

1.3  Give, restate, and follow simple two-step directions.

Organization and Delivery of Oral Communication

1.4  Stay on the topic when speaking.

1.5  Use descriptive words when speaking about people, places, things, and events.

2.0 Speaking Applications (Genres and Their Characteristics)

Students deliver brief recitations and oral presentations about familiar experiences or interests that are organized around a coherent thesis statement. Student speaking dem­ onstrates a command of standard American English and the organizational and delivery strategies outlined in Listening and Speaking Standard 1.0.

Using the speaking strategies of grade one outlined in Listening and Speaking Standard 1.0, students:

2.1  Recite poems, rhymes, songs, and stories.

2.2  Retell stories using basic story grammar and relating the sequence of story events by answering who, what, when, where, why, and how questions.

2.3  Relate an important life event or personal experience in a simple sequence.

2.4  Provide descriptions with careful attention to sensory detail.