I always struggle a bit when my children are just learning to read. Listening to the slow, stumbling sounds has a way of putting me to sleep, but that first year or two is critical to helping them build essential reading skills.
Some years ago I taught reading in a K-3rd grade school. Most of my time was spent with children who were falling behind, and one of the things that really improved their reading speed was memorizing sight words. The ability to know what a few of the words were, without having to work out every single sound, made reading just a bit more bearable for them. It improved their speed, their accuracy, and their enjoyment of the words and books we were working on.
Free Printable Example Worksheet (Click and print.)
I push phonetics early with my own children, but we also work on memorizing sight words. Any activities I can come up with to make the repetition less tedious is gratefully received. This is the latest, I’ve been working on this week. It is a Sight Words Scramble, pulling 3+ letter words from Fry’s first 100 sight words. The children circle every third letter in their balloons. Those letters spell out one of their sight words. They they copy those letters onto the line to write out their sight word.
This worksheet improves both their reading of sight words and the spelling as well. The balloons add a bit of whimsy, and the game of solving the scramble is a bit of a challenge for their busy minds.
I hope you enjoy it, and happy reading!!