A quick overview of kindergarten Common Core Standards

Parents may be surprised to learn that even kindergartners’ classroom work will be changing under the new standards. For students to be successful, teachers and parents need to be strong partners and have a clear understanding of the learning goals. (Download our Common Core cheat sheet for parents of kindergartners.)

Examples of skills kindergartners should learn under Common Core

Kindergarten reading skills

1) Read all 26 letters — lowercase and uppercase — and say their sounds, including both short and long vowel sounds.
2) Answer questions about details in a book by pointing to where those answers appear in the text or illustrations.
3) Read dozens of three-letter, often rhyming, words (e.g. pot/hot, bed/red).

Want more? Read our complete article, Your kindergartner’s reading under the Common Core Standards.

Kindergarten writing skills

1) Print most lowercase and uppercase letters.
2) Correctly write their names and many consonant-vowel-consonant words (e.g. cat/hat, pet/wet), and phonetically or inventively spell simple high-frequency words they often see or hear (e.g. the, go, she, like, play).
3) Understand the three types of writing — opinion, explanatory, and storytelling — and write a couple of sentences of each type. (At this age, drawing and dictating sentences count as writing.)

Want more? Read our complete article, Your kindergartner and writing under the Common Core Standards.

Kindergarten math skills

1) Count to 100 by 1s and by 10s, write numbers 0 to 20, and compare two numbers between 1 and 10.
2) Figure out the number to add to any number from 1 to 9 to make 10 — using objects, fingers, or drawings.
3) Use names of shapes to describe objects in the environment. (e.g. The window is a square; the plate is a circle.)

Building skills at home

1) Cook with kids! Ask them to help count out the ingredients, which helps them learn words and concepts like half.
2) Ask questions while reading together, such as: What is the character feeling? Why is he reacting that way? What do you think will happen next?
3) Model patience with homework. Especially at first, kids (and parents) may feel confused by new homework. When parents set the example, children learn to work hard, persist, and stay positive.

See skills in action

Go to Milestones.GreatKids.org to watch videos of kindergartners demonstrating strong reading, writing, and math skills.

What’s next?

Wondering what’s in store in first grade? Check out Your first grader and Common Core: a cheat sheet.

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Updated: February 8, 2016