All About Sight Words (and a HM freebie)

This is me..... at least my feet. I love summer! I'm pretty sure Selena loves it too.
When I found this on pinterest it made me laugh. I was shocked at how much the kitty looked like mine.

As much as I love seeing the amazing progress kids make in reading in first grade, sometimes I feel like this. Don't you?
One of those times is when I have my students read the High-Frequency or Sight Word list to me. In our district it is 250 words that come from the Houghton Mifflin reading program. Since it's so many words there's no way I could have everyone read the whole list when I want to check their progress. So what I did was break the list down into smaller lists of 25 words like this
I send this home and in class they read from flashcards with me, sometimes another student does the flashcards with and sometimes they read to me from this short list. I have extra copies of each list by my reading table and when I have them read from it, I'll write on top " (student's name) can read the circled words." And I'll circle the ones they can read and let them take it home. Sometimes when child only has a few they need to still learn, I'll get out a list and write "____ needs a little practice on the circled words." and send it home. 
Once the student can read those 25 words, they get the next list, their picture goes up on the board in the room, and the next list gets sent home. Last year my board looked like this to go with my frog theme.
 Each log or frog has a label that reads "25 Word club", "50 Word Club", "75 Word Club", etc. down to 250. The students picture gets put up when they pass the first list and again next to each list as they pass it. I don't move the photo down the list, I put up another one next to the next list. So as we really get going this board ends up quite covered in pictures. The kids use it to keep track of where they are and they get this small reward every 25 words instead of waiting until they've passed all 250. The pictures I print are like the small wallet photos.
I also send the Houghton Mifflin words for each week home on the first page of my homework packet. I added the "fluency check" this year as a way to let parents know how well their child read the words to me. I can check a box that says the child could read all the words, none of the words, or the circled words. So I'll circle the ones the child can read and send it back home the next day. I'm hoping my students' parents find this helpful.
If you think this will help you, just click on the picture. It's about 33 pages long because there is one sheet per week. The theme and week number in the top corner of each page to help me keep track of when to use it.

You know how we all like to read comments, so leave me a note if you stop by. Let me know what you think. And if you would, let me know something about how you track sight words progress and how you inform parents. Thanks a bunch!!!
Have a Happy 4th of July!

To my Canadian friends I hope Canada Day was wonderful. Is that also an independence celebration? I'm going to have to look that up and learn about it.
Have a great day!


  1. I love your word club! I'd like to set something like that up in my classroom with a pirate theme. Thanks for sharing your idea!! :)
    Learning Is Something to Treasure

  2. Nicely done!! AND I REALLY like the cat picture! ;) (yes, I feel that way too sometimes...shhh, don't tell anyone)

    First Grade and Fabulous

  3. I really like your word club idea! Our sight words come from our reading series too and if I follow the series I teach 5-6 sight words each week and by the end of the unit they should be able to read 30 or so words "fluently". This year I'm departmentalized and in charge of teaching reading...I'm kind of digging your method of keeping track of things...I think you've inspired me this morning!

    A Pirates Life for Us


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