Sight Words

A team approach is the best way to teach sight words, in my opinion.  I think parent involvement is key to students learning their sight words.  My sight word homework is called "Bubble Gum words".  These are the words I want to "stick" (like bubble gum) in my students' minds.  I implement it much like a do the "Popcorn Sounds" program which I wrote about in an earlier post.  

*Ahead of time, take 10 file folders and label them:  List 1, List 2, List 3 . . . and so on.
*Make at least 20 copies of each list, punch 3 holes, and put in folders.  It is helpful if you copy the lists on different colored paper.
*Give a placement test by having students read the list of words.  Students will begin the program on the row of words, on the list of words, of first word he/she reads incorrectly.
*Make Bubble Gum homework folders out of folders with 3 prongs.  Put the list of words in students' folder after they take placement test.  NOTE:  This homework is differentiated . . . students will be working on different lists based on placement test results.  
*Send home folder of words so parents can help their child study.
*Each week - you decide which day of the week - students will bring their folder and you will test them.  Some student may only be able to read one row of words correctly.  Other students may read 4 or 5 rows of words correctly.  Let the students read until they come to a word they don't know.  
*I put a bubble gum scented sticker in the last box of the row of words if the student reads all of the words in that row correctly.  For some reason, bubble gum stickers are very motivating to students.  You can also use stamps if you don't want the expense of stickers.

During the week, to enforce sight words, I play Bubble Gum BINGO when I meet with my reading groups.  As a general rule, each group will be on similar list of words.

Here is list #4 and the BINGO game cards for list #4.

From a time management perspective, one of the best tips I have is to list your students in order alphabetically  and assign each student a number.  This will be the student's number when you are testing him/her for Popcorn Sounds or Bubble Gum word knowledge each week.  Very quickly, your students will learn their number order.  I.E.  Jennifer C. is #5 so she comes after Chris B. #4, but before Ben D. #6.  I usually test the majority of my students during journal time.  Sometimes I have to finish a few during D.E.A.R. time.

Also, to save time I put the folders in number order before I begin testing.  I can quickly see which # is missing so I can ask that child to double check his/her backpack.
Here's my chart:


This is the letter that I send home to parents.

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