Reading Milestones, Challenges and Possibilities for First-, Second- and Third-Graders - Kumon

Reading Milestones, Challenges and Possibilities for First-, Second- and Third-Graders

First grade student practicing their reading skills

Reading is one of the most important skills a child will learn during the early elementary years, and it impacts every subject in school. Strong readers often excel in other subjects, like math, science and history, because they built strong reading comprehension skills early in their learning.

While every child learns to read at their own pace, there are basic milestones* that can be used as a gauge to see if your child is on track.

First- and Second-Graders

  • Read familiar stories.
  • “Sound out” unfamiliar words.
  • Use pictures and context clues to figure out unfamiliar words.
  • Self-correct when they make a mistake while reading aloud.
  • Identify the beginning, middle and end of a story.

Second- and Third-Graders

  • Read longer books independently.
  • Understand the concept of paragraphs.
  • Understand humor in text.
  • Identify the points of view of different characters.
  • Recount stories and say what the moral or lesson is.

Reading Challenges for Early Elementary Ages

Parents are often the first to notice struggles with reading. Parents often notice in first grade because a child who is just learning to read may have trouble making associations between sounds and letters. Problems include detecting differences in speech sounds and performing tasks that require this skill, such as: pronouncing new words, remembering sight words, breaking words apart into sounds and blending sounds together.

A child with weak phonological skills often prefers to guess at unknown words while reading because it’s frustrating to figure out sounds or blend them together. Sounding out unknown words is a critical skill your child needs to read. Beyond third grade, text contains more difficult words that often cannot be deciphered from context clues or limited images or pictures.

If you notice that your child is stressed while reading, is falling behind or shows a lack of desire to read, these can be warning signs that there is a problem. A struggling young reader often avoids reading because the activity is too exhausting.

And remember, just because your child may be struggling with reading does not indicate that there is no hope. Reading is complex. It takes time and plenty of direct, systematic instruction.

How the Kumon Program Can Help

All parents want their children to be confident and successful readers. At Kumon, we instill the importance of practice. At the core of all accomplishments is the art of practice. Top scientists, artists, athletes and scholars – none achieves greatness by accident. They practice. Imagine what your child can achieve with mastery in reading at an early age.

Kumon Establishes a Pattern of Success

The fundamentals instilled by Kumon over time lead to accelerated learning throughout life. Kumon Parents find their children performing above grade level, which increases educational opportunities and opens a world of possibilities through advanced and gifted schooling.

Kumon Sparks Your Child’s Critical Thinking

While book learning is a pillar of student success, other factors can boost academic skills to new levels. By teaching critical thinking skills, our self-learners break free from the limitations education often requires.

Kumon Helps Build Your Child’s Self-Confidence

Self-confidence in a child is priceless – and the earlier it begins, the stronger it can grow. The Reading Program at Kumon was created to build this important strength, with each progressive lesson. Kumon shows children how to conquer challenge after challenge; that’s the key to starting the path to achievement. While advancing the program and achieving new successes every day, children learn, flourish and build self-esteem.

Kumon Designs an Individualized Reading Program Based on Your Child’s Abilities, Needs and Goals

It’s essential to your child’s long-term success in Kumon that they succeed from the start and progress through the very first level with confidence. Soon, usually within the first few weeks, you’ll see your child develop better study habits, improved concentration, and a more positive attitude toward reading.

Equip your child with the tools to succeed in reading at an early age. Open a world of opportunities with the gift of reading mastery.