What First Graders Should Know

The expression “to prepare a child for school” is not just buying a brand new form, a bag and notebooks. It is also a certain level of knowledge which future first-graders must master before they cross the threshold of the school.

First-graders must have basic knowledge about themselves, their parents and the surrounding world, have basic skills of maths and reading.

General Knowledge

First-graders must know their name, surname, age and date of birth, parents’ surnames and names, their occupation and place of work; the names of other family members; the address – city / town / village, street, house, floor, apartment – and a home phone number (if available); country where they live, and its capital; major attractions of the city / village; basic colors and shades; parts of the human body; clothing, footwear, professions, sports; types of land, water, air transport.

Speaking Skills

The level of speaking skill development is the basis for reading and writing. A first-grader should be able to:

  • pronounce clearly all the sounds and have a good articulation;
  • determine the number of sounds in short words;    
  • distinguish between singular and plural, feminine and masculine;
  • know the difference between vowels and consonants;
  • name the group of objects with a generalizing word (a cup, a spoon, a plate are dishes);
  • answer questions and be able to ask them;
  • make up a story with a picture or retell a familiar one;    
  • understand the multiple meanings of words;    
  • make up a sentence with 3-5 of proposed words;

guess riddles.


The preschooler should:

  • know the numbers from 0 to 10;
  • be able to identify the number of objects with numbers;
  • be able to compare the number of objects in two groups;
  • solve problems and make simple addition and subtraction within 10;
  • know the names of geometric shapes (circle, square, triangle, rectangle, oval, diamond);
  • be able to compare objects by size, shape, color and group them on this basis;

Motor development

Future first-grader should be able to:    

  • hold a pencil, pen, brush in a proper way;   
  • draw geometric shapes, animals, and people;    
  • write the pattern of printed letters;
  • neatly cut paper (into strips or geometric shapes – squares, rectangles, triangles, circles, ovals, cut along the contour of the figure);    

glue and make applications.

Motor development helps the child not only do necessary creative tasks at school but is also closely linked with the mastery of writing skills and the quality of speech.

Other important skills

The first-grader should:

  • greet the first;
  • politely say goodbye;
  • thank for the help;
  • speak quietly, without attracting attention;

not interrupt the speaker.

Remember that the main thing is child’s psychological readiness for school and eagerness to get new knowledge. Train and test without fanaticism. Believe in the future success of your first-grader.