Thursday, October 10, 2013

Sight Word Islands

As parents, we all want to help our kids be successful in school. My daughters' teachers will often let us know some of the things we can work on at home to complement the things they are learning in school. If you have a child learning to read, one big thing you can do to help is to practice sight words at home.  

Sight words are integral when learning to read. These are the words that are found in just about everything you read. They are best learned by memorization, since many cannot be sounded out. Of course, no one actually wants to sit and memorize words, especially not your average 5 or 6 year old. So, why not turn it into a game? Since my girls love playing driveway games, I thought I'd bring some of our sight word review outside. We got out the sidewalk chalk and took over the driveway with a game of Sight Word Islands.

To set up the game: In the center of our driveway, I drew a large star with a circle around it. This was the island we were trying to reach. I then wrote sight words coming out from the star in all directions. Each word had a circle around it. These were our islands. I used both words that my first grader needs to work on as well as words that she is already quite comfortable reading. I then added three different starting points on the outer edges.

To play the game: Each girl stood on one of the start islands. Their goal was to jump from island to island all the way to the star. But, in order to jump onto an island, you had to say the word out loud. The shortest way to the star wasn't always the easiest way!

My preschooler played along with us and took a lot of help from both Mom and big sister. She has not reached the level of sight words yet, so we gave her a pass on actually knowing the words. Instead, she just had lots of fun jumping!

I love to turn learning into a game. Plus, anything that involves gross motor skills such as running and jumping is a hit with just about any child. Movement can go a long way in helping your child learn and remember. This post at Moving Smart explains why movement is so important. So, get moving and get learning!

What are some creative ways you've used for teaching sight words?

Practice sight words on the driveway by playing Sight Words Islands. It's a fun way to learn and move at the same time.

You May Also Like One of These Sight Word Activities:

DIY Sight Word Memory Game

Sight Word Tallies

Sight Word Pick and Spell

Frog Hop Sight Word Game at Mom Inspired Life

Sight Word Bracelets at Kitchen Floor Crafts

Or you can follow my Reading And Writing Fun Pinterest Board for hundreds of fun ideas:

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  1. What a fun variation on driveway sight words - we'll have to try it this way next time! Featuring in my After School round-up on Monday. Thank you for sharing with us!

  2. We will be trying this one! Thanks! Now following from

  3. I love games with chalk and the driveway! So simple and fun. Thanks for linking to the Outdoor Play Party

  4. My 6 year old is entering first grade in the fall and we are always looking for fun ways to learn sight words! Currently we have an outdoor chalkboard in our backyard and I write a new sentence on it every day to help her learn sight words. Your game sounds like ALOT of fun and I can't wait to try it! Thanks for a fun idea to help kids learn!


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