Whether or not the snow is piling up in your neck of the woods, here are two snowy resources to help you teach high-frequency words.
No snow here! It was sunny and 70 degrees the other day!
No matter the weather, teaching and learning (however sporadic) must go on! If you are looking for resources to keep your kindergarten, first, second, and third-grade students engaged in learning high-frequency words this winter, these two fit the bill.
Why are these words so important? High-frequency words are the words found most frequently in written text. They include both phonetically regular and irregular words. Because they occur so commonly in any text, students need repeated exposure to recognize them instantly or by sight. Recognizing these words by sight lays the foundation for fluent reading.
Are you wondering about the difference between high-frequency and sight words? Find out the difference along with some teaching tips in this blog post by Dr. Deb.
Here are two activities, including a freebie, to help you provide that repeated exposure.
Stuck in the Snow Game
My students loved to play word games similar to this one! And who can resist these adorable animals stuck in the snow?
You can play it quickly with a timer set for as few as five minutes. Use it with your guided reading, resource, or intervention groups. Or try it as a literacy station.
This game includes 355 high-frequency word cards suitable for kindergarten, first, second, and third graders. There are 40 pre-primer. 52 primer, 41 first-grade, 46 second-grade, and 41 third-grade words from that famous list of 220.
I also included the 14 remaining words from the first hundred, 49 words from the second hundred, and 72 words from the third hundred most commonly used words.
Regardless of your specific list or reading program, these words should have you covered.
How to Prepare
Choose the color or black/ gray/ white word cards. Decide which word cards will meet your students’ instructional needs.
Print (on card stock for durability), laminate, and cut out the word cards. Sort the cards into stacks by kind of animal.
Print, laminate, and cut out a spinner. Use purchased spinner hands; a paper clip and a pencil; or a brad and a paper clip. You will also need a timer if you choose to set a time limit.
How to Play Stuck in the Snow Spin, Read, and Collect
Include the game cards for a little extra fun. Just follow the directions on each card.
Place the cards face up in the four stacks you have sorted by the kind of animal.
Take turns spinning the spinner, taking the top card in the corresponding stack, and reading the word. Collect or keep the cards you read.
The game ends when the timer goes off or the last card is chosen. Count your cards. Who has the most, least, or an equal number of cards?
Click the highlighted words to purchase Stuck in the Snow Spin, Read, and Collect in my TpT store.
Check out the free activity below for another way to give your students even more exposure to these words.
Stuck in the Snow Free Activity
Here’s a handy activity featuring those irresistible animals! Try it as part of your small group instruction or in a literacy center.
Use this free set of 36 primer level high-frequency word cards and mat to help your kindergarten and first-grade students practice spelling and reading these words.
How to Prepare
You will need one mat for each student working on this activity at the same time.
Print (use card stock for durability) and laminate the word cards and mat(s). Instead of laminating the mats, you can place them inside a dry erase pocket.
Cut out the word cards. Store the cards in a baggie or seasonal container.
Select letters for building the word. Your options include letter tiles, letter cubes, lacing letters, and magnetic, plastic, or wooden letters. Check to be sure the letters will fit in the middle space. Another option is to form the letters with play dough.
How to Use
First, pick a word card. Place it in the top box on the mat. Say the letters. Read the word.
Then, build the word with letters in the middle space. Say the letters and read the word.
Lastly, write the word with dry-erase markers or crayons in the bottom space. And yes, say the letters and read the word again!
For additional words, use any word cards you already have or from my Stuck in the Snow Game.
In general, you can build 5 to 7 letter words. With lowercase lacing letters, you can extend this to 9 to 10 letters.
Any of these Stuck in the Snow word cards could also be used with a seasonal sensory writing tray. Can you think of other ways to have your students practice with these word cards? I’d love to hear your ideas in the comments below.
Download the free color or black/ gray/ white version of this Stuck in the Snow Activity from my TpT store.
Looking For More Resources?
I recently revised this open-ended flexible winter resource, Mittens on the Line, for sequencing numbers 0-120 in a variety of ways. Use it to provide individualized practice for your kindergarten, first, and second-grade math students.
It can be used for ordering sets of 5 or more consecutive or non-consecutive numbers and for counting by 2’s, 5’s, 10’s, or any multiple.
I added a second set of ready to use, easy prep black/ white mittens with a variety of sequences, mixed-up within each set of five numbers (consecutive numbers 0-10, 0-20, within a decade 21-120, across a decade 21-120; and non-consecutive numbers 0-10, 11-20, 0-20, within a decade 21-120, and 11-120). This set is perfect for a color, cut, and glue activity.
Click on the links below to find additional resources for high-frequency words or winter.
- How to Encourage Engagement With High-Frequency Words
- Engage in the Magic of Learning With Roll-a-Rainbow
- Warm-up With a Free Hot Cocoa Number Activity
- Winter Resources in My TpT Store
- High-Frequency Word Resources in My Tpt Store
Photo in the title image by so_lizaveta.