What Topics Are on the Test? 

MAP Math Section for 1st Grade 

The math section of the MAP K-2 test consists of approximately 43 questions of various topics: 

  • Computation and Problem Solving: Basic operations and mathematical word problem-solving.
  • Number Sense: Identifying, counting, comparing, and ordering numbers.
  • Measurement: Understanding length, area, time, and temperature.
  • Geometry: Basic concepts like symmetry, congruence, and shape classification.
  • Statistics and Probability: Interpreting graphs and evaluating event likelihoods.
  • Algebra: Equivalence, patterns, series, and operational relationships.
We know that understanding mathematical concepts might be difficult for young children, so we highly recommend using physical elements to help your child.
For instance, counting with your fingers or objects like pencils or marbles instead of calculating, or explaining geometrical shapes by comparing them to objects from everyday life. 

MAP Reading Section for 1st Grade 

The reading section of the MAP K-2 test consists of approximately 43 questions of various topics: 

  • Phonology and Phonics: Distinguishes sounds, vowels/consonants, syllables, and rhymes.
  • Concepts of Print: Understands the hierarchy of letters to sentences, book structure, and alphabetical order.
  • Word Structure and Meaning: Applies prefixes/suffixes, context clues, synonyms/antonyms, and categorizes words.
  • Comprehension: Includes reading/audio comprehension, text types, and story elements like setting and characters.
  • Writing: Focuses on capitalization, punctuation, spelling, verb tenses, and parts of speech identification.
Remember – all the questions are recorded, so there is no need to panic if your child is not yet comfortable enough with his or her reading skills.
The audio can be played as many times as needed. You can help your child practice their listening comprehension by reading them stories and asking them questions.


What Does the MAP Growth Test Look Like for 1st Grade? 

Though the same adaptive test is given to most grades, from kindergarten through 1st grade (and sometimes also in 2nd grade), there is a variant of the test that accounts for the fact that most of those taking it cannot read well enough to understand the questions on their own. This version of the test includes recorded audios of the questions so that the student does not need to read it from text. Additionally, many of the questions present images as opposed to words, unless of course the written word itself is relevant to the knowledge the question is designed to assess. This K-2 version of the test includes two sections: Math and Reading, as opposed to that of grades 2*-12 which may also include Language Usage and Science. Your child will be asked basic math and reading questions over a number of topics, as listed below

*2nd graders can take either version of the test. 

What Do the Questions Look like? 

The majority of the questions are either multiple choice with varying numbers of options, or else asking you to select something (such as an image) that properly answers the question. Here are some MAP sample questions taken from our PrepPacks and practice tests that will give you a general idea of the types of questions asked, and how you are to answer them: 

Question 1: 1st Grade Math 

A teacher asked the students in her class what their favorite food was. 

Their answers are shown in the following bar graph: 


What is the food that was chosen by the fewest students?

Answer & Explanation|


Question 2: 1st Grade Math 

Look at the following exercise that is missing a number:

5 + ___ = 12

What is the missing number?

Answer & Explanation|


Question 3: 1st Grade Math 

Look at the following number sequence:

10, 12, 14, 16, 18, ___

What is the next number in the sequence?


Answer & Explanation|


Question 4: 1st Grade Reading

What is the plural form of the word mouse? 

Answer & Explanation|


Question 5: 1st Grade Reading

Read the following sentence:​

George is the tallest boy in his class. 

What is the meaning of the word “tallest”?

Answer & Explanation|


Question 6: 1st Grade Reading

Look at the following text:

Students in the first grade:






What type of text is this?

Answer & Explanation|


Why Is My Child Taking the MAP Growth Test? 

There are two main reasons why your child might be taking the MAP Growth: as an admission or placement tool, or as an internal method of tracking the students’ academic progress within a school:  

Admission/placement: Some schools use the test to determine what level the student is on, and the administration uses this information to decide whether or not they are fitting to be accepted into the program, or which track would be the best fit based on their areas of strength and weakness.  

Tracking academic progress: Other schools administer the test up to three, or even sometimes four times a year (beginning of the school year, middle of the school year,  end of the school year, and sometimes summer break) to all of their students in order to keep track of how well they are grasping the material and what aid is needed for certain students, as well as what improvements need to be made in the teaching or to the curricula. 

Do We Need to Prepare? 

You can only gain from preparing for the MAP test. If your child is taking the test as an entrance exam, they should certainly prepare, as this will significantly increase their chances of being accepted. Even if it is only being used for placement within a program, you can only benefit from a higher placement. There should be no fear that preparing for the test could get the student placed too high that they wouldn’t be able to keep up. No amount of preparation will make them seem smarter than they actually are; it will give them the proper tools to more accurately represent just how smart they are. This is, in part, because they will be less likely to stumble over careless mistakes, and their incorrect answers will more likely reflect the things they genuinely don’t know as opposed to a lack of understanding of the test and its style of questioning.  

Most importantly, properly preparing for the test can actually help your child progress in his or her academic growth such that their higher scores would accurately reflect their newly advanced level. This is because in preparing for the MAP test, they may improve their understanding of materials they learned in school, and they may learn new material they will find useful in the years to come. With this in mind, you can understand why preparing for the MAP is also very beneficial even when taking it regularly to track progress in school. The more you prepare, the higher you score. The higher you score, the more advanced you will be in your education, the more prepared you will be for your upcoming schoolwork, and the more academic opportunities you will be afforded in the future. To put the answer briefly—yes, you can only benefit from more preparation! 

How Is the Score Determined?  

As mentioned above, there are Common Core standards that the questions aim to assess, and a system that divides these standards into different levels of academic growth. These standards are referred to as Descartes Statements, and each one is a statement of ability—something a student of a given level should be able to do. For example, “recognizes an odd number in a series of even numbers between 0 and 10,” or “differentiates between long and short vowel sounds of a given letter.” 

The system used to measure these standards is called RIT, which stands for Rasch Unit, and it distributes the Descartes Statements over varying ranges of numbers that determine their level of academic progress. For example, if a question is designed to assess the first Descartes Statement mentioned above, listed at an RIT of around 150 (about an average level of kindergarten, and a low level for 1st grade), and a student answers it correctly, this suggests that the student has the capability of recognizing odd numbers, and may also be able to do other things with a similar RIT level. After the test presents your child with enough of these types of questions, it will be able to calculate which average level of RIT they will have a 50% chance at answering correctly, and that number will be their score. 

How Can I Tell if It’s a Good Score? 

In order to tell if this is a high or low score, the NWEA will present you with the percentile. This number compares your child’s RIT level with all other students of the same grade level, and essentially tells you the percentage of students who scored higher and who scored lower. The closer the percentile is to 100, the more similarly aged students who scored lower, and consequently, the more advanced your child is for his or her age. According to the most updated data, the average RIT math scores for 1st grade range from 157-170 at the beginning of the year, and 173-186 at the end of the year. In Reading, they range from 153-165 at the beginning of the year, and 167-182 at the end. 

To find the most updated information on MAP 1st Grade scores, percentiles, averages, and more. Click here 

Where Can I Find Test Prep and Practice Material? 

Look no further! Testprep-online offers the full package. Our pack is divided into Math and Reading just like the real test, and each includes six quizzes divided over three progressing levels of difficulty and one full-length test designed to simulate the experience of the official MAP test. 

Prepare Your Child for the MAP Kindergarten – 1st Grade Test! 
Over 250 Practice Questions & Explanations From $89 

Tips for Helping Your Child Ace the MAP Test for 1st Grade 

  • Plan out deadlines and priorities.  Make a study plan and prioritize topics according to your child's strengths and weaknesses. Our PrepPack has section-specific quizzes and practice tests, so you and your child can easily focus on one skill at a time, if necessary. 

  • Keep your child healthy and active.  Remember: your child will not be able to learn without the right tools, and these include good physical and mental health. Make sure your child gets plenty of sleep, eats healthy food, and is given sufficient time to play and have fun. You will undoubtedly see the benefits. 

  • Take regular breaks during study sessions.  Focusing for long periods of time is never easy. Give your child a chance to process new information by incorporating small breaks every so often. 

  • Practice questions over and over again. This will help your child get used to this type of test taking while at the same time familiarizing them with the knowledge and skills needed to answer questions on the MAP. Our PrepPack includes 266 original questions and explanations for each answer, giving you plenty to practice. 

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