Monday, February 22, 2016


Welcome to the first post of Smashing Strategies for Guided Reading, a monthly-link up between 8 teacher bloggers! Each of us will share a guided reading strategy, a teaching tip, and a freebie! Each month, you’ll have the chance to win a product relevant to each different strategy we blogged about! Time to build up those guided reading resources!  Make sure you check out all the great bloggers for fabulous tips and strategies!

My strategies are based on SIGHT WORDS!!!   I am currently in the process of changing how I instruct sight words and what words I consider to be sight words.  I am working on getting Orton-Gillingham Level 1 certified this year, and I have learned so much about teaching reading.  I can't wait to share what I have learned with all of you!   These strategies can be used with any words that you are using as your sight words.  I have found sight words has become a term used for both high frequency words as well as for rule breaker words.  High frequency words are words that are found frequently in text. The thought is that if students can recognize these words quickly this will increase reading fluency.  Some high frequency words do follow reading rules and spelling patterns, and some do not.  For instance like is a high frequency word, but follows the Vce rule, but another high frequency word, said does not follow a rule.  It is a rule breaker because ai should make the long a sound and in said it makes the short e sound.  Which is why phonetic readers often spell it sed.  Whatever words you are using as your sight words, these smashing strategies will work great for them!

One of the new multisensory strategies I am using this year for sight words is tracing the word three times on a tactile surface.  The students use two fingers to trace and the letter NAMES  S-A-I-D. and then the word said.  They trace the sight word three times each in this manner.  They need to be looking at the written sight word, I like to have it in red, saying the letter names, and tracing all at the same time.  This is what makes it multisensory.

I have THREE of my go to tracing activities that I would like to share with you.

Smashing Strategy #1:  Trace the sight word in sand.  I have found that pencil boxes work the best for storing sand.  I have one pencil box full of sand for each student in my group.  Pick up colored sand at the end of summer when it is on sale!

Smashing Strategy #2:  Trace the sight word on plastic canvas.   I found the clear plastic canvas at Walmart.  I like to write the word in red under the canvas.  I have them trace it three times same as above.

Smashing Strategy #3  Trace on the IPAD.  I have searched high and low for apps that are great for tracing I have a list of them you can get HERE  for FREE.  I love to send it home with parents at conferences.

I just recently realized that when you use the sand app on the IPAD or anything on the IPAD you are actually taking the tactile part of the activity away.  I have seen a tactile overlay that you can put on your IPAD to make it tactile.  I put the plastic canvas on the IPAD and it works okay.

My students LOVE this game.  Grab your favorite fly swatter hang these cute flies on the wall or just lay them out on the table and swat away!   I have students swat a fly and then read a word.  They BEG to play this. Make sure you follow me on Facebook and Instagram to see it in action this week!

Get it free HERE

How about a giveaway too?  I have some great activities for centers in this cute spring sight word packet.  Win it by entering below or grab it HERE

Please go get some more freebies and guided reading strategies from these great bloggers!


1 comment

  1. I love doing anything with sight words, it makes me miss teaching 1st and K. I've never heard of the plastic idea, love it!


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