Writing sentences in first grade


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Does the thought of teaching beginning of the year writing in first grade sound less pleasant than a staff meeting that has gone into overtime?

Teaching first-grade writing is not for the weak. It’s no easy task.

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like for real.

Teaching first grade writing at the beginning of the year…even trickier.

I remember my first year as a teacher. So excited and full of energy. Writing was absolutely, without a doubt, the one topic I looked most forward to lớn teaching.

Then…not so much.

I had students who struggled to lớn hold a pencil. Students who ran all their words together. I’m talkin’ absolutely no spaces between words whatsoever.I had students who began every. Single. Sentence.

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with the word ‘and’. Worse yet, I had students who wrote an entire paragraph using just one sentence and a whole lot of ‘ands’.I had students who cried because they didn’t know what khổng lồ write about, didn’t know how khổng lồ spell words, or simply didn’t lượt thích to write.The danh sách goes on. 

Let’s just say that the image of myself being a champion writing teacher on year one was trampled by a gigantic stampede of wildebeests.



Fast forward lớn today. I can honestly say that writing is easy to teach, and it’s oh so rewarding to watch as my 1st-grade writers’ abilities soar khổng lồ new heights.

No Joke!


After trying, & failing, to lớn implement a Writers’ Workshop model, my first-grade teaching bestie và I sat down to lớn take a good long look at our standards and what the over writing goals were for our students.

Then we jumped into backward planning. We asked ourselves what we wanted our students’ writing to look lượt thích by the kết thúc of first grade, and identified all the building blocks students needed in order to achieve our expectations of them.

When this was all said and done, we were able lớn pinpoint exactly what foundational skills our first graders need to know prior to jumping headfirst into opinion, narrative, và informative writing.

Here’s what we came up with:

Drawing pictures using basic shapes & linesLabeling pictures using best-guess spellingWriting a complete sentence with a subject and predicateProper use of capitals, spaces between words, & punctuationHow to lớn write using a sentence stemLearn to write telling sentences (declarative)How to write asking sentences (question)Teach how khổng lồ write exclamatory sentencesWriting listsListing 3 or more things in a sentence using commasRespond khổng lồ questions in writingWriting stronger sentences using adjectives, adverbs, who, what, where, when, or howUse feedback from teacher and peers to lớn strengthen writingWrite more than one sentence on a topic

Now imagine jumping into a narrative, opinion, or informational writing unit knowing your students have all of the above skills mastered. Did the thought of that make your teaching life 1,000 percent easier?


Wishing you joyful days and restful nights. Teaching is tough…take care of yourself & give yourself a whole lotta grace. After all, your superpower is shaping young lives & making our world a better place. Here’s to YOU!

Cindy & Becky

Primary Bliss Teaching

Want khổng lồ make Beginning of Year Writing in First Grade a SNAP to teach? CLICK HERE to check out that, và our other Grab-and-Go, NO PREP Writing Resources!

Update, we now have second-grade writing resources available too. CLICK HERE lớn have a peek.