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Elementary Mathematics

1st Grade Math

In Seattle Public Schools, we believe all students have mathematical brilliance. Your child’s teacher seeks to cultivate that brilliance to develop your child into a mathematical thinker and problem solver. Your child will see who sees the value of math in their life.

Your child will learn and develop mathematical ways of thinking through (mathematical practices). Some examples of math practices are using math to model authentic situations, persevering in solving problems, constructing and critiquing mathematical justifications, and representing mathematical ideas visually. Read more about the Standards for Mathematical Practices.

Effective math instruction begins by building a strong conceptual understanding of how numbers work (number sense). This is the foundation which leads students towards procedural fluency (using flexible, efficient, and accurate strategies). Effective math instruction includes opportunities for students to apply their understanding and fluency to real-world mathematical problems.

In first grade math , students will build on their kindergarten experiences counting to 100 and working with numbers within 20 to:

  • Use objects, draw pictures or use symbols to solve real world problems within 20
  • Understand the relationship between addition and subtraction and use it flexibly to solve problems within 20
  • Learn addition and subtraction facts within 10
  • Understand and use the equal sign
  • Read, write and count within 120
  • Understand place value (tens and ones) of 2-digit numbers
  • Compare 2-digit numbers using symbols <, >, =
  • Use place value understanding (with objects, pictures and numbers) to solve problems within 100
  • Measure length using length units (such as inches)

When your child goes to 2nd grade, this knowledge will serve as the foundation for working with numbers up to 1000, solving more complex real-life problems, extending place value understanding (hundreds, tens and ones), and applying understandings about place value and the relationship between addition and subtraction to solving problems within 1000.

At home you can support your child by:

  • Playing games that make math fun and engaging using with materials such as dice and cards
  • Noticing math in the world, such as in nature and while cooking
  • Asking questions about their thinking such as, “What were you thinking when you solved this?”

For more ideas about supporting your child at home see the SPS Supporting Your Student-Math webpage.

Learning Standards are for all of us: students, principals, community partners, teachers, families, and the public.  They provide an equitable benchmark of what is important for students to learn as they progress through school. Introduction to the Common Core Math Standards: Achieve the Core