First Grade Literacy | 123Read&Write

First grade literacy focuses on phonemic awareness, decoding strategies, reading comprehension skills, and vocabulary building. First grade literacy works to improve reading comprehension skills through activation prior knowledge, sequencing of events, finding evidence within the text, and making connections between the text and their own life. 

The activities presented with the first grade 123Read&Write comprehension units utilize different strategies to help promote oral language comprehension, vocabulary building, word recognition, and understanding of the elements of literature. Units concentrate on the basic concepts of story elements including plot, setting, character, and point of view, sequencing of events, and finding evidence within the text. These units also provide creative outlets for children to draw or write about their connections with the text.

Narrative Text

Listed below 123Read&Write present five chapter books to use with your first grade child: Junie B. Jones Beauty Shop Guy, Junie B. First Grade Toothelss Wonder, and... On each book's link you will find a short reading comprehension test, five follow up lesson plan activities relating to the important aspects of first grade literacy, and a video correlating to the book presented. 


Clifford's Good Deeds

Interest Level: K-3

Reading Level: 1.2

In Norman Bridwell’s children’s book, Clifford's Good Deeds, Clifford struggles with helping out in certain situations because of his size, he begins to feel bad. However, throughout the story, Clifford learns there are many ways he can help, despite his size. Read the wonderful story of Clifford lending a paw to his friends Emily Elizabeth, Tim, and many others during this endearing adventure.


Bunny Cakes

Interest Level: Pre-K-K

Reading Level: 1.9

It's time for some more messes and lessons learned in Max and Ruby's children's book, Bunny Cakes. Our lovable little bunny, Max, is not making it easy for Ruby to make her Grandmother a surprise birthday cake. After many messes and return trips to the grocery store, Max comes up with one of his more interesting plans: an earthworm birthday cake. Read Rosemary Well's Bunny Cakes and see what Max is up to now!


I Lost My Tooth

Interest Level: Pre-K-3

Reading Level: 1.2

When a tooth falls out, we know to put it under our pillow for the tooth fairy to find. However, the children's book, I Lost My Tooth, asks what to do when that tooth is lost before the fairy visits. Author Hans Wilhelm's adorable little white puppy comes to life with some creative ideas on how to let the tooth fairy know that he has lost a tooth!


Fluffy's 100th Day at School

Interest Level: K-3

Reading Level: 1.6

Author of more than 50 books, Kate McMullan brings the adorable children's book, Fluffy's 100th Day of School. Ms. Day's class is about to celebrate the 100th day of school by having a party. Of course, Fluffy wants to take part. However, Fluffy soon will find out just how crazy classroom parties can get! One-hundred yard dashes, seed eating contests . . . Fluffy will give it his all in this charming children's book in the Fluffy series. 


Junie B. Jones and a Little Monkey Business

Interest Level: 1-4

Reading Level: 2.0

"Junie B. is the darling of the young reader set," A Little Monkey Business, according to USA Today. New Y0rk Times bestselling author, Barbara Park, offers another adventure with the one and only, Junie B. Jones. The children's book, , the second book in the Junie B. series, has Junie using her baby brother to get what she wants out of her friends. Also, if all goes according to plan, Junie may even bring her brand new baby brother to her school on Pet Day! 

First Grade Units for Purchase

Best Reads for First Grade

Children in first grade will begin reading independently at at some point throughout the year. Some children will be able to read upon entering first grade, others will not begin reading until closer to the end of first grade. Just like baby teeth falling out, children learn to read when they're ready. Continue to read with your child nightly, and encourage them to read parts of the book to you. While there is nothing wrong with reading picture books to your first grader, they are now ready to read beginning chapter books. 

Visit the 123Read&Write Bookstore for these best reads and others by the same authors.

Barbara Parks

Barbara Parks' Junie B. Jones series is, by far, the best chapter book series out there. Junie B. Jones, the feisty main character, shows the reader what life is like for a little girl. Junie B. Jones has conflicts with her family, her baby brother, Ollie, her friends, and ever her teacher. Barbara Parks character development is what makes these books the best read ever. Her quirky, yet comical thoughts make you laugh out loud. Humorous events happen in every story - from cutting her dogs fur to dragging a dead fish around on a leash - you just never know what Junie B. Jones will do next! Junie B. favorites (from her kindergarten and first grade series) include: Junie B. Jones Beauty Shop Guy - Junie B. First Grader (at last!) - Junie B. First Grader: Boss of Lunch - and Junie B. Jones Smells Something Fishy.

Jeff Brown

Jeff Brown authored the very popular Flat Stanley series. In the first of the Flat Stanley books, Flat Stanley His Original Adventure!, Flat Stanley became, well… flat. From there Stanley Lambchop, along with his family, finds himself encountering many different adventures. He has been to Mount Rushmore, Egypt, and even on a camping trip. His size makes it easy for him to solve conflicts and become the hero of the story. Flat Stanley favorites also include: Flat Stanley and the Magic Lamp - Flat Stanley in Space - and Flat Stanley Invisible Stanley.

Mary Pope Osborne

Mary Pope Osborne is known for her Magic Tree House series which began in 1992 with Dinosaurs Before Dark. The Magic Tree House series is a best read for first graders because of the intriguing time travel concept found within each storyline. Jack and Annie, siblings from Frog Creek, Pennsylvania, find a magic tree house in the woods near their house. It is within this magic tree house that Jack and Annie are able to travel through time to solve a mystery given to them. Jack, the ever-serious brother, and Annie the brave sister, micmic the relationship all children have with their siblings. The fun adventures and the lively pace of the book make these a best read. Magic Tree House favorites include: Mummies in the Morning - Pirates Past Noon - and Midnight on the Moon.

Herman Parish

Herman Parish, the nephew of the late Peggy Parish, has taken over his aunt's series of Amelia Bedelia books. The original Amelia Bedelia has been tranformed into a young girl who misunderstands and miscommunicates with others. Her miscommunication is due to her literal nature, where she thinks "step on it" means to literally stand on it instead of "hurry up." Amelia Bedelia is a fun, laugh out loud, series of books first graders will enjoy. The newer Amelia Bedelia favorites include: Amelia Bedelia Means Business - Amelia Bedelia Unleashed - and Amelia Bedelia Road Trip!

Susan Nees

Susan Nees' Missy's Super Duper Royal Deluxe series introduces the reader to Missy, a spunky, fun-loving young girl. Missy's imagination brings life to her character as she deals with everyday problems young children face. The colorful illustrations on each page and the speech bubbles filled with Missy's words, make this a fun read for the first grade child. Missy favorites include: Missy's Super Duper Royal Deluxe: Picture Day - Missy's Super Duper Royal Deluxe: Class Pets - and Missy's Super Duper Royal Deluxe: School Play.

Mo Willems

In addition to Mo Willems' hilarious Pigeon books featured in the Pre-k and Kindergarten section, he has authored another series with two main characters, Elephant and Piggie. These are considered beginning reader books as your kindergarten child should be able to read the sight words in these books independently. Elephant and Piggie have personalities much like the Pigeon in his younger series and are considered a best read. Favorite Elephant and Piggie books include: Elephants Cannot Dance - There Is a Bird On Your Head - and We Are in a Book!

Doreen Cronin

 If you're looking for something a bit more sarcastic than Duck, in Click Clack Moo, Cows That Type, check out Cronin's Diary series. The Diary series are thoughtful and humor filled stories for the first grade child. These stories are written in diary format from an animal's perspective - worm, spider, or fly. In each animal's story, they encounter a conflict throughout the school day which is solved through the help of their family and friends. Diary favorites include: Diary of a Worm - Diary of a Spider - and Diary of a Fly.  

James Dean

In addition to the Pete the Cat picture books featured in the kindergarten section, James Dean, the illustrator, has expanded the series to include the My First I Can Read! books. This is the first level of I Can Read! chapter books - perfect for the emergent reader. Books in Litwin's collection of I Can Read! include: Pete the Cat: Pete's Big Lunch and Pete the Cat: Pete at the Beach.

David Shannon

Outside of his No, David! series, another best read of David Shannon's is A Bad Case of Stripes. This is a best read due to the moral of the story - be proud of who you are. A young girl, Camilla Cream, becomes ill with a bad case of stripes. Her illness becomes a medical mystery as doctor after doctor try to find a cure. Unfortunately, a cure can only take away the disease when Camilla Cream accepts herself the way she is. The bold illustrations and the high-level moral make this picture book a best read for first graders.

Lisa McCourt

Lisa McCourt has added on to her picture book series, I Love You Stinky Face. The new series uses the same format found in I Love You Stinky Face, but presents the story in a Scholastic Reader Level 1 format. In this beginning reader format Stinky Face continues to question his mother and she continues to find answers to his tough questions. Reader Level 1 best reads include: Ready for Kindergarten, Stinky Face? - and It's the 100th Day, Stinky Face!

Expository Text