If you're like me, you are always looking for fun additions to add to normal curriculum instruction. Reading is one area that often gets overlooked when it comes to being creative. So much stress is put on children to read well, that many workbooks designed for younger children are very repetitious and, let's face it, downright boring. But children do need repetition when learning to read; it's the boredom they could do without.
We are currently working on learning our sight words. We are up to a total of 30 words that she can read fluently and without help. My goal is to have 100 words down fluently by the end of the year. I am doing things completely different than with my son. With him I focused mainly on phonics, but failed to give him a solid grasp of a large amount of sight words. This meant that in first grade he could sound out encyclopedia but struggled with generic sight words like blue and come. So with her I'm focusing largely on sight words and we do phonics 2x a week. By first grade she should be reading fluently and we can get more involved with phonics.
Here are some sight word games or activities we do to break up the monotony of sight word drills and general reading.
Spruce Up the Sight Word - I just found this site yesterday, and I love it. They provide a variety of sight words along with strips of decorative items like eyes, legs, mouths, etc... Your child can read the word and then use the provided illustrations to "spruce up" the sight word. Here's an example of Avlyn's sight word "ME."
Games to Make from Kelly's Kindergarten - This site is fabulous. I stumbled across it on my search for fun sight word activities, and I still haven't explored it thoroughly. She has a ton of games to print out and play. One example is the Krusty Krab game. It's meant to be used to teach money, but what we do is put our sight word flash cards word side down. One of us draws a card and reads the word. If we read it correctly, we move a quarter to the next space and the next person reads a word. Play continues that way. If someone misses a word, they have to move back one space. The person who gets the quarter to the other side first, wins a skittle or M&M or whatever little candy happens to be waiting on the other side.
Note: If using this sight, you will need a lot of paper and printer ink, but I think it's well worth it. We use a lot of these games on family game night, which gets the whole family involved in learning.
DLTK's Alphabuddies - This site offers a large letter with fun decorations to turn the letter into an "alphabuddy." I print out all the letters for a particular word and she decorates them. Then I help her cut them out. I then mix up the letters and have her spell the sight word correctly and glue it on a piece of paper. This activity helps with both word recognition and spelling. Here's an example of when Avlyn did the word "FOR."