Monday, November 14, 2011

Teaching Sight Words

Word wall words.  I know every teacher has a different approach of introducing new words.  I have kindergartners who are struggling so I like to introduce about 3- 4 words a week maximum, depending on the difficulty.  Each week, I informally assess which words we can "retire" and which words should stay on our "words of the week" list for another week.  I display our words of the week in this [Target dollar spot] pocket chart in our group meeting area:

We practice spelling, writing, and reading these words in many different activities.  I keep the words in the "Words of the Week" pocket chart 1-2 weeks.  When the words retire, I move them to 2 locations: our big word wall and our interactive word wall.  Our big word wall hangs behind our computers and is not accessible by students, but can be seen by everyone.  Our interactive word wall consists of 26 library pockets (A-Z).  When a word "retires", I stick that word card in the corresponding pocket so students can go grab it when they need it.

 I know this may sound like a lot of prep work, and I'm not going to lie...the first year, it is!  It took me a while to make the letter cards for my word wall and the ABC pockets.  However, these will be reusable every year!  (Plus, if you want to save time, you can always buy pre-made stuff...I was just trying to save some $!)

On top of the things I already mentioned, I also use word card rings.  I have enough rings for every student in my class and these rings are used for games and in centers.  Eventually (when we have more words), I will be sending these rings home with take home books as practice.  Some of the centers we use these for include computer ("paint" sight words on Pixie), dry erase (practice writing sight words), and word work (make sight words out of magnets, letter tiles, etc.).

How do you teach your sight words?  

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