Breaking down literacy goals for grades K-2

Little girl reading

Early literacy education is crucial when it comes to developing the whole child, as learning these skills helps children with reading comprehension, vocabulary, creativity and self-expression. At the end of each grade level, your child should hit certain benchmarks to ensure they are ready for the following grade. Below, we’ve outlined the literacy goals our team sets for students to master by the end of kindergarten, first and second grade.  

By the end of kindergarten, students who work with ALLMemphis will learn the following literacy skills – which lay the foundation for their future learning:

  • Manipulating phonemes (individual sounds) in words.
  • Correctly naming all individual letters.
  • Correctly identifying sounds of all individual letters.
  • Reading words with short vowel sounds.
  • Reading and spelling some common irregular (sight) words.
  • Identifying and reading common consonant digraphs.
  • Starting to identify and use some suffixes. 
  • Starting to identify and use some spelling rules. 
  • Writing a complete sentence that starts with a capital letter and ends with a period.

By the end of first grade, children should read with fluency and accuracy, excelling at the following skills:

  • Reading words with long vowels. 
  • Distinguishing long from short vowel sounds in single-syllable words.
  • Identifying and spelling common consonant digraphs.
  • Understanding that a syllable must have a vowel sound.
  • Reading and spelling two-syllable words following basic patterns.
  • Writing many common, frequently-used and irregularly-spelled words.

By the end of second grade, students should decipher the meanings of more complex words, incorporating the following skills into their daily learning:

  • Distinguishing long and short vowels when reading regularly-spelled, one-syllable words.
  • Knowing spelling-sound correspondences for common vowel terms.
  • Reading and writing regularly-spelled, two-syllable words with long vowels.
  •  Reading and writing words with common prefixes and suffixes.
  • Reading and writing common compound words.
  • Identifying words with inconsistent but common spelling-sound correspondences.
  • Recognizing and reading grade-appropriate, irregularly-spelled words.
  • Decoding grade-level texts with purpose and understanding.

No two children are alike when it comes to learning and it’s important to understand that these literacy goals are benchmarks for each grade level. No matter the skill level, our team is here to help ALL children reach a level of literacy that will allow them to thrive inside and outside of the classroom. Is your school interested in learning more about how you can work with our team to bring our approach to your classrooms? Contact us today.