Today we are going to learn about sight words and how they will help you with teaching reading.
Sight Words: Anyone who teaches reading knows that children need to be able to read sight words when learning to read.
Sight words are the most frequently used words in the English language.
Many sight words cannot be sounded out. They have strange phonetic patterns. (the, come, said, where, (for example))
Sight words make up about 50% of any written text that adults read. Sight words make up 80% (or more!) of text that children read
There are different levels of sight words, and different approved lists of sight words (Dolch and Fry) –generally each level and list have very similar words but some people teach from one list while other teach from another.
Sight words promote fluency: Students will be able to read more fluently if they have learned to recognize sight words instantly.
Sight words promote confidence. Because sight words make up at least 50% (or up to 80%) of what a student reads, a student will be able to read fluently up to 80% of the time if they know the sight words. If they don’t, they could struggle up to 80% of the time.
Sight words promote reading comprehension. When you know the words, you can read to learn instead of learn to read. •Sight words provide clues to the context of the text. It is easier to decode a story when you know 80% of the words. (For instance: Bear likes the blue ball.)
Sight Words should be memorized and practiced frequently. A word has little meaning when it is learned alone – Learn sight words in the context of other words and you will see that it has rich meaning.
Students should know sight words fluently – (they should recognize them immediately and without hesitation.)
Homework assignment: Do the sight word test – Do not assume you know what your student knows or does not know! This is an important step! I want you to test your reader using the test so that we can use the test as a benchmark on where to begin lessons. Remember, when you test your reader, in order to say that they know the sight word, they need to read the word without hesitation.
Want to see the other lessons in the workshop?
1) Phonics, (Here is a link for the phonics lesson)
2) Sight Words (Here is a link for the sight word lesson)
3) Confidence, (Here is a link for the confidence lesson)
4) Fluency. (Here is a link for the fluency lesson)
5) Comprehension (How to help teach your little reader – Here is a link for the comprehension lesson)
About the Authors:
Madreen Karle is a master first grade reading teacher with over 30 years of classroom experience. She taught reading in a special needs and English as a Second Language classroom. After retiring she wrote a reading program to help others learn how to teach reading. She is a trusted educator and author of 5 books to help teach children to read and write. In addition to her books, she is a mentor for 3 websites that give reading teacher tips (Mrs. Karle’s Sight and Sound Reading, Mrs. Karle’s Reading Patch, and Mrs. Karle’s Handwriting Patch). Through her teaching she learned that confidence was the key to learning to read. A child who is not confident at reading does not like to read and struggles to read. Mrs. Karle created “sunshine moments” to help teach children how to grow their confidence and learn to read.
Meeghan Karle Mousaw (Madreen’s daughter) has her Master’s in Special Education. She has 7 years experience teaching children to read online. In addition, she developed a curriculum to teach children handwriting called The Handwriting Patch. With the Handwriting Patch learning is fun because children learn to draw and learn handwriting at the same time. In 2019 The Handwriting Patch curriculum became an amazon best seller the first year it was released, helping thousands of kids learn handwriting with a unique, fun method. She is mom to 6 kids, each with differently learning abilities and struggles.
The Reading Patch was established by the creators of Mrs. Karle’s Sight and Sound Reading. Together they have been featured on the NBC media outlets. Over the last 7 years in their online platform, Madreen and Meeghan have worked tirelessly with teachers, homeschoolers and parents looking to help children learn to read to become a trusted authority in teaching children to read and advocating early literacy skills. They often partner with other educational experts to deliver the most current information to the Reading Patch community.