How to Teach Kindergarteners Sight Words

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Children begin kindergarten by making different letters and sounds. As these children go through the kindergarten year and learn all the sounds, they are given the fundamentals to start reading. Part of the fundamentals to future reading is the memorization of sight words. Sight words are common words that are used as fillers in books. A sight word is something that a child should instantly recognize instead of sounding it out. Read on to learn about how to teach sight words to children of this age.

  • Computer with Internet Connection
  • Web Browser
  • Index Cards
  • Permanent Marker
  • Loose Leaf Rings
  • Hole Punch

1 Launch your web browser

Launch your web browser and load the KidZone website. KidZone provides a list of the Dolch sight words broken down into grade levels. Dolch sight words are the most commonly used sight word lists by schools in the United States. You could also use other websites or books that you know for the words. For the website KidZone, please see the Resources section below.

Vocabulary Builder

2 Write down one sight word

Write down one sight word per index card. There are 52 words listed on this page so you will need at least 52 index cards.

Separate the sight cards into stacks of ten. You will have on stack of 12.

Punch a hole in the upper left-hand corner of each index card.

Place the index cards onto a loose leaf ring in the batches of ten (and the single stack of 12). You should have five loose leaf rings with sight words on them.

Practice on stack of sight words until the child has mastered them. Since the sight words are on sturdy index cards and gathered onto a loose leaf ring, you can take them with you wherever you go. You can practice them while waiting at a doctor’s office, idling at a stop light and even during a snack.

Move on to the next batch of sight words after your child has shown mastery of the first collection. After your child has mastered all 52 of the Dolch sight words, put all of the index cards on to the same loose leaf ring.

Practice reading all of the sight words on a single ring to ensure that mastery has been achieved. This will help your child master her reading fundamentals.

  • Don't put pressure on a child to learn these. Everybody goes at their own pace.
  • Consider using different color index cards for each batch of words.
  • Use a different color permanent marker for each batch of Dolch sight words to help break up the monotony of white index cards with black ink.

Melissa Hincha-Ownby has been providing web content since 2006. Hincha-Ownby writes for a variety of online publications including the Mother Nature Network, Suite 101, and "Attachment Parenting International." Hincha-Ownby is entering her final semester in the Technical Communication program at Arizona State University.