The focus of kindergarten instruction is on foundational literacy skills including sound awareness, letter sounds, sight words, and beginning decoding strategies. Sound awareness includes rhyming, blending, and segmenting in both syllables and words. While instruction is guided by student progress, kindergarten instruction usually covers all consonant sounds, the short vowels, and digraphs (sh, ck, th, ch, wh). Beginning decoding strategies include tapping (saying each sound before blending the word together) and stretching (saying the sounds slowly stretched out before saying the word fast). When students are ready they read beginning decodable books that allow them to apply their decoding skills and gain exposure to common sight words.
Kindergarten students receive instruction either one-on-one or in groups anywhere from two to five days a week in their classroom.