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musiclover's Message:

By nature, sight words are spelled, not sounded out. Sounding them out is confusing when most sight words break multiple phonics rules. Thus, there are 2 types of words for first-graders: phonetic and nonphonetic (sight words).

They should be spelled, memorized, recited, snapped, and drilled. Never heard of sounding these out.

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Discussion Review (newest messages first)
Sunbuddy 12-30-2017 12:29 PM

Please share anything you have to help teach sight words. Thank you so much for your time.

NoKetchup 12-13-2017 10:19 AM

My students always struggled with sight words so a few years ago I decided to create my own program to teach them. Each sight word is taught using an action and a song. Every day we watch the videos and sing the songs. Since teaching sight words this way my sight word recognition has improved GREATLY! If you want more information or want me to send you some stuff feel free to message me!

musiclover 12-05-2017 03:17 PM

By nature, sight words are spelled, not sounded out. Sounding them out is confusing when most sight words break multiple phonics rules. Thus, there are 2 types of words for first-graders: phonetic and nonphonetic (sight words).

They should be spelled, memorized, recited, snapped, and drilled. Never heard of sounding these out.

Tiffany 11-19-2017 04:13 AM

When I introduce new sight words, we look at the word, say the word, clap out the sounds, talk about the letters in the word, talk about the sounds in the word-do they make sense, then the students build the word several times using letter cards. Last we might read sentences with the sight word.

Ex. Was
Boys and girls, this is the word "was". Please say it with me three times. (Was, was, was)
Let's clap out the sounds we heard in "was". (W u z).
How many sounds? (3)
How many letters? (3)
what is the first sound we hear? (/W/) Good, does w make the /w/ sound? (Yes)
What is the next sound we hear? (/u/) Does a make the /u/ sound? (Not usually in the middle of a word. It might say /u/ at the beginning of a word, like "about". This is why this is a sight word. You have to memorize it.)
What is the last sound we hear? (/z/) Can s make the sound for z? (Yes, sometimes.)
Let's take our letter cards and build the word "was". W-a-s. Tap each letter as you spell it. Now swipe under the letters and say it-was. Have the students scramble the letters, rebuilding the word each time, spelling the letters, and reading the word.
Give the student a sentence to read that has the sight word in the sentence.

If I introduce more than one word, I use different color letter tiles for the next word. All of the materials are sent home with the student so that they can practice at home with their parents.

Marcimcg 11-15-2017 05:53 AM

We share 4-5 "high frequency" words each week in first grade. Most cannot be decoded and have to be recognized by sight.

Kids give oral sentences for each word in a brief mini lesson. We clap, snap or cheerleader spelling of each word.

Then they find the words in their personal dictionary booklets and highlight in orange crayon. They have the words printed on a strip to be able to do this. Next, they cut apart the words and glue on an index card. They play a memory game with a partner, take cards home for practice.

We look and find sight words in reading selections.

I also scribe a brief sentence on word cards for my special needs or struggling kids. Reading in context is the goal and this helps.

Each week, two of the words are required spelling words.

linda2671 11-14-2017 07:13 PM

I agree that sight words wouldn't fall under the category of phonics, but if that is what you are working on, I have a couple of suggestions.

1. Check out Jan Richardson's book, "The Next Step Forward in Guided Reading". When you buy the book, you get access to videos that show lots of different ways to teach reading. I was just watching a video where she played a game called, "What's missing?" She spelled the word on a magnetic board with magnetic letters, told the kids to take a good look, and then took a letter away and asked what was missing. Then she repeated with other letters, and sometimes took 2 or 3 letters away. The kids tell what's missing, and then write the word on their whiteboards.

2. I always have my students take home flash cards and keep them by the TV. When they are watching TV, they can work on sight words during commercials.

MrsWok 11-14-2017 06:26 PM

My favorite sight word interventions are sentence strips. I take them directly from our curriculum (Fundations) and type them out. Sight words are in red to let kids know that they cannot tap them out. Decodable words are in black. They read the sentences with a teacher. This helps the children read the words in context, which is ultimately the goal!

Another intervention that is research based is reading racetracks. You can google that. Kids like them and they work!

Lillybabe 11-14-2017 03:59 PM

Maybe I am misunderstanding the category you're working in... but I don't feel like sight words fall under phonics instruction. Sight words are more fluency instruction. By definition students aren't able to sound them out and they are more of a whole language reading approach versus a phonics approach. Of course some people use a balanced approach which has both. As far as helping kids recognize them my advice would be to focus only on sight words that can't actually be decoded or follow very unusual rules (are, the, their, said, where, etc.) versus ones that are decodable (this, is, we, me, then, etc.). Additionally, I'd only focus on 3-5 at most per week. How many they can learn in a week and actually retain depends on the student. Finally, I'd make it as fun and multisensory as possible. Get them moving, playing games, etc.

AETeach90 11-13-2017 07:16 PM

Hi all!
I am a senior intern in a first grade classroom this year. We have to complete a Student Impact Study and would greatly appreciate some ideas! My subject is in phonics and it is "improvement in sight word recognition". I have gotten a few ideas off of Pinterest, but would like some ideas from teachers. I will be working with a small group of students while conducting this study!

Thanks in advance for all of the suggestions!

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