10 answers

Helping a 1St Grader Learn Sight Words

Hi! I have a first grader who needs to memorize a list of sight words. (dolch words) They get a list and need to learn the list and then they move on to another list. I think this will continue throughout the school year. She doesn't particularly like reviewing these words so I am looking for ways to make it more fun or at least change it up. I have made a matching game, we write them on dry erase boards and in shaving cream in the tub, and we have them on a wall in our basement where we play a game to identify them. I am just looking for additional ways to help her learn these words as these games are going to get old for both of us as the year goes on and i dont want this to be a battle. (i am a former teacher but, i guess i am out of practice) I know all of the mamas have great ideas thanks in advance.

2 moms found this helpful

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Thanksso very much for all of the ideas and websites! You've all been so helpful as usual!

Featured Answers

Hi C.,
How about magnetic letters on fridge. You could put a word in the middle of the fridge or have her look for a couple different words "hidden". On a flat pan she could also spell out the words as you are going over them.
Also, try "reading" the newspaper or favorite magazine that she can look for the different words in. When she finds them have her write them down to make her own list. By writing them down she will be focusing on the word and practicing her writing at the same time!
Good Luck!

More Answers

On starfall.com, there is a sight word matching game. Doing the game on the computer may add an element of fun to the equation. Also, if you google Dolch sight words, you will find several resources with games as well. This was the one I utilized for my 4 and 6 year old:
http://www.kidzone.ws/dolch/kindergarten.htm

I made my own flashcards with the words, but printed the noun pictures. Together, we would come up with silly sentences. Lastly, most book stores have some early learning books that focus on a few sight words at a time. I found this helpful as well because it introduced other vocabulary and made the sight words lessons less redundant. Good luck.

1 mom found this helpful

I am doing the same with my 1st grader currently. What worked wonders for me is to do it before bed time. Why? He does not like to go to bed therefore he will stall as long as possible. Try getting to the bed a little earlier so he/she is not too tired.

Definitely make it fun by allowing her/him to lose focus to share a observation or a joke. Tell him/her what level he is reading. They like to know that they are able to read 3rd grade or 5th grade frequently used words.

Hope this helps!

C.,

It sounds like you're already doing a great job incorporating various ways to learn her sight words. I would like to add interactive games to the list. Kids love taking part in games while learning. Click on the link below to try some out. I think she'll like games such as Drag and Drop, Word Reader and Eggwords. It's a wonderful, free, site for many subjects. My kids like it a lot and so do I!

http://www.gamequarium.com/readquarium/highfreq.html

I've also played games where I used sticky note paper and wrote words on them. Then I stuck these words throughout the house. Then my kids would look for them on walls and furniture and if they could read it, then they could take it off the wall or wherever. If they could collect a given number of words before the timer went off, then they would earn something small. (Sometimes a quarter, pospscile, etc..) My twins loved this. You could do this with math facts too. I haven't done this for awhile... I bet my kids would love if I brought this game back into play in my house. Have fun.

Oh... one more idea... we used to have high frequency words on the refrigerator. (We made ours, but you can buy these at places such as Lakeshore Learning Store in Palatine. If she reads a word correctly, it goes to the upper part of the refrigerator. You would make a big deal about all the words that she read correctly. You can say.... "I bet today you'll be able to move 12 sight words to the top of the refrigerator." Of course underestimate how many so that she can reach and exceed that number so then you'd make a big deal ... hype it up... for her that you're so proud of all the words that are on the refrigerator.

The only other thing I can think of is doing a word search. It really has helped my daughter to spell her sight words. She has no trouble reading them, but spelling - oh boy! Here is a link her teacher gave me http://puzzlemaker.discoveryeducation.com. It has all sorts of puzzles.

All of your ideas are very good. You may want to try breaking the list down into smaller groups if you haven't already. Have her work on 5 words, once they are memorized, go to the next five.

Ok, So I have to ask rather than give a suggestion, sorry. My son is amost six, I homeschool and he is 1st grade level. So do they not teach phonics any more? Someone told me that they don't, it is all memorization, sight words, rather that being able to sould out the word. You know, maybe that might help better. Since I started working with my son over a year ago, when I became a stay at home mom, right now he should be doing kindergarten work, however we had to get 1st grade work books. I did not push "sight words" we worked mostly on phonics so now he can sound out words that he should not be able to right now. Try that, when she brings home the list rather that trying to memorize the words, go over the sounds.

Hi C.,
How about magnetic letters on fridge. You could put a word in the middle of the fridge or have her look for a couple different words "hidden". On a flat pan she could also spell out the words as you are going over them.
Also, try "reading" the newspaper or favorite magazine that she can look for the different words in. When she finds them have her write them down to make her own list. By writing them down she will be focusing on the word and practicing her writing at the same time!
Good Luck!

Hi C..
It sounds like you are already doing some great things to help her. I do memory with my second grade students and they really like it. Try having someone else test her, like grandma or dad, just to mix it up. Good luck!
S.

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