Growing Readers Together

May Tips for First Grade Parents

Help Your Child With Compound Words

A compound word is one word created by the joining of two smaller words. Help your child learn to see the small words within these longer words. Write the word "into" on a piece of paper. Using your thumb, show your child the word "in" as you cover up the word "to" with your thumb. Then cover up the word "in" and show him the word "to". Have your child do this with other compound words.

How to Help Your Child Work With Words

Help your child learn to read words that end with a consonant-le. We call this a final stable syllable.


* Have your child listen for the final stable syllable in words. He can put a thumb up if he hears it and a thumb down if he doesn't (ex. basket -thumb down, bubble - thumb up). Sample words: pickle, apple, saddle, gallop, lemon, waffle, pepper, popsicle, stable, ladder, puzzle, bridle, blanket, bucket, riddle, little, ankle, jungle.


* Write the word 'candle'. Read it aloud to your child and point out the pronunciation of the -dle syllable. Show your child how to pronounce these final stable syllables:

-ble, -cle, -dle, -fle, -gle, -kle, -ple, -sle, -tle, -zle.

Write these words on a piece of paper for your child to practice: bubble, uncle, paddle, ruffle, wiggle, buckle, ripple, missle, battle, puzzle

Help Your Child Think About the Author's Message

Many fictional stories have a lesson or moral to be learned. We are helping your child learn to think about the lessons in these texts. Here is how you can help your child learn to think about the overall message in a story.


* As you read to your child each evening, ask your child, "What is the author trying to teach you in this story?" Be sure to model this for your child as you share your own thinking about the author's message. (ie. After reading your child the story of The Three Little Pigs, you might tell your child that one lesson we can learn from this story is time and effort pay off. Be sure to explain your thinking by saying, "The first two pigs were lazy and built their homes quickly, but the third pig put in a lot of time and built a strong house that ended up saving the pigs' lives.")


Most fairy tales and fables have an overall lesson or moral. Read lots of these texts and talk, talk, talk with your child about the author's message. You are helping your child learn to think and analyze as he reads.