A Grade-By-Grade Guide to Education
A general overview of what's being taught in public schools today, kindergarten through sixth grade. Plus, find out what else you need to get your kids ready for school
"No, Mom! You're doing it the wrong way!" That's what Stephanie Elliot, a Scottsdale, AZ, mother of three, heard when she tried to help her kids with their math homework. Elliot knew she'd have trouble -- she just didn't expect it to start so early. "Even memorizing the multiplication tables is different," she sighs.
It turns out that a lot of what we remember from grade school might be obsolete now. "In general, everything's been bumped down," says Chip Wood, M.S.W., director of curriculum and instruction at the Gill-Montague Regional School District in Turners Falls, MA, and the author of Yardsticks: Children in the Classroom Ages 4-14. "Kids are being asked to do more difficult math and reading work than they used to. So what you remember learning in first grade is now taught in kindergarten, second-grade subjects are now taught in first grade, and so on." While each state's curriculum will vary a bit, here's a general overview of what's being taught in public school in each grade.