Year 1 Punctuation

Discover Year 1 punctuation standards

In Year 1, children learn to use punctuation marks with the basic process of creating a simple sentence and including a piece of sentence-ending punctuation, such as a period, question mark and exclamation point. In this article, we’ll take you through each of these concepts and provide some practice tips for you to try with your child.

What Is Punctuation?

Punctuation is a name for the marks we use to make our writing clear.

Periods, question marks, and exclamation points are punctuation that mark the end of a sentence. A sentence tells a complete thought.


A period marks the end of a statement. A statement is a sentence that tells you something.

Practice Tip

Practise putting periods at the end of sentences on Night Zookeeper! Challenge your young learner to unscramble sentences ensuring the punctuation is placed in the correct position.

Sentence unscramble activity on, displayed on tablet screen.


In Year 1, your child will learn that when a sentence asks something, it should end with a question mark.

We often use these words to begin a question:

  • What
  • Where
  • Who
  • When


When a sentence shows a strong feeling, it's called an exclamation. An exclamation sentence ends with an exclamation point.

Practice tip

Practise writing exclamations in the Night Zookeeper lesson series about punctuation.

Punctuation lesson series on, displayed on tablet screen.


The comma is a punctuation mark that we use to separate numbers and words.

In Year 1, children learn how to use a comma to separate the date and the year. The comma shows us where the date ends and the year begins.

  • June 1st, 2023

The comma can also be used to separate items in a list. Children may practise writing sentences just like this when in Year 1:

  • Sam the Spying Giraffe loves to eat pizza, bananas, and ice cream.

Practice Tip

Get your child to learn all about commas with Sam's Story Writing lesson series on Night Zookeeper!

Lesson on the use of commas, displayed on tablet screen.

How Night Zookeeper can help

Night Zookeeper logo, displayed on tablet screen.

Night Zookeeper covers the key punctuation rules your child needs to learn to move on to Year 2 and beyond, and will make reading & writing fantastically fun for your child!

Our award-winning reading and writing program includes thousands of Year 1 punctuation resources, including games, lesson series on punctuation, printable worksheets, and much more!

Sign up today to get a FREE 7-day trial!

Related articles

  • Punctuation (overview)
  • Punctuation Resources
  • Primary English Curriculum
  • Year 1 Writing
  • Year 1 Reading
  • Year 1 Spelling
  • Year 1 Grammar
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