Let me show you a fun sight word game. Looking for some new or different ways to make SIGHT WORDS FUN in your classroom? Sight Words are a huge part of most kindergarten programs.
WE MAKE LEARNING FUN!
But how do we get our students to their sight word goal? We make learning FUN. Let me introduce you to an engaging, personal goal-setting, wiggle-approved way to practice, review, and assess sight words… using ELVIS.
Note, you can make this game into any other theme! You can also change the skill. Use this idea and make it your own!
HOW THE SIGHT WORD GAME STARTED
I should begin with how this game came about. I have a healthy appreciation for Elvis. After all, he is the most attractive man who has ever walked on this Earth. I often get small Elvis from family members because who doesn’t want to see his face everywhere? Is Elvis in the classroom? You must check out this idea!
My sister-in-law found this small Elvis bag and bought it for me for my first year of teaching. She thought maybe I could pack my lunch in it. I loved it but couldn’t think of a good use for it. Elvis deserves more than to hold my lunch!
In my kindergarten world, I was making games constantly to make sure my kindergarteners were engaged in learning. Secondly, it helps to think outside the box and I can’t conform to the textbook curriculum. I spent a LARGE chunk of my personal time making games for my students.
Parts you need to make this sight word game for your classroom. Then, my superpower of inventing games for my students went into overdrive and this crazy simple, yet effective game was invented.
THE ELVIS GAME
Let me introduce you to… The Elvis Sight Word Game. Here is what I use…
1. A fun, themed bag, preferably one with a pocket.
2. List of students’ names on paper.
3. Sight Word cards, or any other set of cards for review skills.
4. Music to dance to.
5. A simple table with names down one column and a measurement of time across another.
6. Reward labels.
Here is how to prep…
1. Fold the paper with the students’ names in half.
2. Place the names in the bag.
HOW TO PLAY THE SIGHT WORD GAME
1. Play about 20-30 seconds of a fun-themed song. Since I use Elvis as our theme, we play the song, All Shook Up… as I shake the bag. And we DANCE and wiggle.
2. Now, pause the song. When the music stops, we stop and sit.
3. Then, dramatically pull out one student’s name from the bag. Exaggerate as you build suspense and unfold the name.
4. Everyone cheers for their friend who gets “picked” to play. After their first time playing, I remind them of the number of cards they got correct last time. Beating their last personal best is their goal. I use this game for self-growth, not best in class.
5. That student has their turn to read as many sight words as they can.
If your standard requires timing them… time them. Maybe it requires fluency, require fluency. Furthermore, if it requires accuracy, requires accuracy. The point of this activity is for students to have fun and for you to assess at the same time.
6. Write down their correct number on the chart. We do count the cards together as a class because it is FUN. We get so excited as the card count gets CLOSE to that student’s goal! Plus it is another way I can get my students to practice counting skills with a purpose.
7. If they learned MORE words this time than last, they get a small prize.
I usually give out mini marshmallows or stickers.
8. Now, I take the student’s card who just played and fold it in half again.
Then I put it in the pocket of the bag. Why? It helps me to clear the class one time before I call anyone for their second turn. Plus this allows students time to learn words in between their turns playing Elvis. If they get called once a day, they don’t have a lot of time to master new words.
8. Lastly, I also give it out Elvis achievement stickers I personally make using Avery Labels.
I make them and print a sheet of the time. regardless of their abilities or level, each time a student plays they get a sticker. It is a celebration. My former students in first grade thru fifth know all about these stickers and congratulate these students for their hard work. Additionally, it is a great way to communicate with parents about their students’ abilities and accomplishments in the classroom.
9. Finally, if time permits, press pause again and play again. We play a LOT when we have 10-25 words in the sight word card pile. We play twice a day when we get to 50 cards or more. And we DANCE and wiggle. When the music stops, we stop and sit.
Then, I love having a chart of accurate data for sight word growth for each student. This is used to see if my students are learning 1 or 10 words a week. I can see who knows more or less for grouping purposes or app settings. It is also an ideal way to promote having a fun way to encourage others. I hope you can use this idea in your classroom as well.
NEED MORE SIGHT WORD IDEAS?
Finally, if you want to know how I teach sight words in my classroom, click below.