As we come to the end of another school year, parents are understandably curious about whether or not their children adequately learned the material they were taught. One area we often overlook is literacy, even though these skills are strongly correlated to a child's academic achievement. So, what should your kindergartener know in terms of their literacy skills?
According to the American Speech Hearing Association*, children should be able to match rhyming words, such as "pop" with "hop." Also, they should know that certain words contain the same sounds, like the /h/ sound in "ham" and "hot." By this time, children should be able to identify some common sight words, such as "play", "the," and "have." They should understand that letters stand for certain sounds; the letter "D" sounds like /d/ as in "dog." Finally, they should be able to understand and tell a story simply by looking at the pictures in a book.
From a writing perspective, children should be able by print their first and last names. They should also be able to draw a picture that tells a story. Additionally, they should be able to name and write the words about the picture. It's always fun to listen to a kindergartener's stories, and the back-and-forth discussion allows them to build and strengthen their speaking and listening skills, too.
These are good milestones to measure your kindergartener's literacy progression. Spend some time gauging your child's literacy skills. You might find an issue that can be defeated with early intervention, or you may find your child has taken the first step to academic success.
* "Watch My Literacy Skills Grow: Kindergarten.", American Speech Hearing Association. 23 May 2018. https://www.asha.org/uploadedImages/Literacy-Skills-Kindergarten.jpg