Effective Ways to Teach High Frequency Words

Hi friends. This week, I'm chatting about different ways to practice high frequency words. These words can be very tricky for students, especially without proper methods of teaching. One of the most effective ways to teach high frequency words is by using orthographic mapping. This is where we teach children to recognize patterns within their high frequency words instead of having to solely rely on their memory.

Often, high frequency words will present challenges for students. So, we should try to make it fun. Today, I'm sharing five quick games you can play using your own materials. I'm also sharing a link to a special Halloween Freebie activity. Keep reading for the link.

Fun Games to Help Teach High Frequency Words

Tic Tac Toe

You can play this online or with a whiteboard. Using a whiteboard, draw a 3X3 grid just like a regular game. Then, dictate a word to the student and have them write the word in an empty box. They can then put in a fun stamp or use their tool to mark off an X. When it's your turn, put an X or an O. So simple! Throughout the game, have your teachable moments with their high frequency word list of the week or practice words.

Spin and Spell

This is also an easy, yet fun, game to use with your students' words. Head over to super teacher tools to grab a free spinner. You can change the words on the spinner to match the words that you are practicing. You can also decide how many words will be on the spinner. Leave a few spots to add in bonus actions like go again or get an extra point.

Roll and Spell

This type of game is what I included in this week's freebie. There are many ways to play this activity. I give students a list of five words and the sixth is the bonus. Again, you can quickly change this into a game, but it's fun to let the students choose what they want to happen on the bonus roll. Click HERE to download this week's FREEBIE 🎃. There is also a lesson plan and a demo.

Pull Container

Kids love the element of surprise. Put their high frequency words in a fun, seasonal container or basket. Using video for online teaching, or in person, pull from the basket a word that the student needs to practice. Open it up and show it to them. Or dictate the word to them, show them the word, and see if they match!

Do We Match?

This is one of my favorite games to play with my students. When you're online, it's especially important to hold them accountable on the other side. I dictate a high frequency word to the student while we each have our whiteboard. Then, we say "1, 2, 3, do we match?" "Yes, we do." Every time that they match with you, give them a point. They can also have a goal for how many points they want to collect.

I hope you enjoyed these fun, high frequency word games. We don't want to be boring to our students, and we certainly don't want phonics to be either. Want more ideas and strategies? Join me for my webinar hosted by TLC on October 20. I'd love to see you there! Click the button below to read more about it and to register.

In the webinar, I will be talking about all the elements of a structured literacy lesson including how we can play games with sound cards. You will learn ways to add games to any part of your lesson, including sound card drill, word card reading, sentence fluency, and multi-sensory spelling. I will also show you how we can engage our students with games and movements, online or in person, in a structured literacy lesson. I hope to see you there!

Talk to you next week!

Don't forget to drop the tech to connect and keep it super simple!


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