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Typical Kindergarten Language Arts Curriculum

Goals for Reading and Writing


Updated April 17, 2014

What will children learn about reading and writing in kindergarten? What are they expected to know at the end of the kindergarten year? While the goals may vary somewhat from state to state, there are some typical expectations. This list can give you a good idea of what your child will learn in kindergarten -- assuming he or she doesn't already know most of it!


  • Recite the alphabet in order
  • Recognize and name all the letters of the alphabet, both upper and lower case in random order
  • Know the sounds corresponding to each letter of the alphabet

Reading Readiness

  • Identify the front, back, title, and author of a book
  • Understand the functions of both the author and illustrator of a book
  • Understand the difference between fiction and nonfiction
  • Name and imitate the sound heard at the beginning and ending of words
  • Blend consonant-vowel-consonant sounds orally to make words (h-a-t = hat m-e-n= men)
  • Distinguish letters from words and words from sentences
  • Indicate where a sentence starts and ends
  • Count the number of sounds in a syllable and the number of syllables in a word
  • Recognize and use rhyming words


  • Use left to right and top to bottom motion when reading
  • Read one syllable words (i.e. cat) and recognize common and color words (I, the, red, blue) by sight
  • Use picture clues to read
  • Make predictions
  • Identify the characters, setting, and main idea of a story
  • Understand the simple structure of stories (beginning, middle and end)
  • Retell a story with details


  • Write all of the letters of the alphabet in both upper and lowercase
  • Correctly write first and last name
  • Print correct letter symbols to correspond with pictures
  • Write and correctly spell some simple consonant-vowel-consonant words (i.e. cat)
  • Write longer words spelled the way they sound (phonetically)
  • Write from left to right and from top to bottom
  • Use writing (letters, pictures, and words) to express own meaning
  • Write simple sentences, showing the spacing between words.
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