Sight word board game with Nana Hedgehog and friends.

Teaching sight words can be a struggle. I often get stressed out trying to keep a system in which I can keep track of which words to introduce while going back over other words my daughter has already learned. Sight words are words that are best memorized because they’re words most often found in written text also they can’t all be sounded out properly. To hold my daughters attention I made 11 sight words boards. All the same color and same design to avoid them from memorizing each level and board rather than memorize the actual words. By turning each list into a fun game board it gives me the opportunity to bring out each list one at a time and easily go back to older lists for practice. When my first grader isn’t in the mood to play the game I have her read the words out of order. That way I’m sure she’s not just memorizing the list rather she is memorizing each word.

Playing the game is simple. We used counting bears as our game pieces. You can use whatever you like cereal, toys, and more. We roll the dice move that many spots and say each word leading up to the spot we land on.

Sight word list 9 game board.

I hope you enjoy the fun sight word inspired game.

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Monster shape art.

My oldest daughter is currently enrolled in an online school for First Grade. Working alongside her to keep her on track can make it difficult to devote time to my youngest daughters (age 3) preschool activities. In which often times I turn to simple art based activities that give both my daughters a chance to create as my youngest daughter can practice basic skills. In which we recently made shape monsters in order to incorporate shape learning, creativity, colors, alphabet recognition and scissor practice all within one fun activity.

My oldest daughters shape monsters; using rectangles, squares, and ovals.
My youngest daughter and I worked together to create our shape monster.
The shape monster got hungry, we fed it alphabet letters.

My oldest made her shape monster whichever way she felt. I often don’t give her strict rules when it comes to creating art because I allow it to be a place in which she can freely create and express herself. My youngest is still learning how to properly hold scissors therefore we created the monster by working together. I asked her what shapes she wanted to use for different body parts. Then we added a pipe cleaner to the top so she could hold on to it, in which she ran around the house flying her monster all around. When it got hungry we cut out the letters that make up her name and fed them to the monster.

I have found the simplest of activities tend to be the most useful for us. As a parent that works alongside her children I often get flustered trying to make every activity the best it can be. The truth is regardless how fancy or sloppy an activity is put together it doesn’t matter. All that matters is that they’re learning. In which I often turn to simple activities I can slap together last minute that don’t always have to be printed out. I also found that my children work best when they’re not given strict rules and are allowed to create what that want rather than an exact replica of something. Such as lets make a shape monster and then they decide what shapes they want to use and what their monster will look like.

Pot of colorful, shape, and sight word coins.

On March 17th we celebrate Leprechaun Day. In which every year the night before my daughters make their own leprechaun boxes that they leave out for leprechauns to stop by and have a place to sleep for the night. As a thank you for their hotel accommodations the leprechauns leave a surprise in the boxes that my daughters excitedly open on March 17th.

To go along with their surprises my daughters and I made pots out of paper towel rolls to be filled of gold. As a fun learning treat I made colorful coins, coins with shapes on them, and blank gold coins to write sight words on. As a fun way to cover several of the basic skills we’re working on. I laminated the coins for durability and left the sight word ones blank that way I could erase and write different words to practice.

Shape caterpillar to hide and find.

If your looking for a fun way to teach shapes to your preschooler then this printable shape caterpillar is a great place to start. You can hide the pieces around the house giving children a chance to move around and explore as they learn their shapes. My daughter enjoys finding the pieces and matching the correct body part to the correct foot. Which makes a great matching game as well. I often fine incorporating movement in with learning to be useful way to keep my daughters interested and motivated to keep learning.

I laminated the pieces so they would hold up to my three year old and last for longer than a day. That way we could hide the pieces over and over. Repetition is an important part of the learning process. If you want to opt out of laminating you could use them as scissor practice allowing your youngsters to cut the pieces out themselves and glue them onto a poster board. In which you can name the shapes with them as they place the pieces upon the poster and match the boots to the correct bodies.

Each shape body part has a matching foot to go along with it.

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Above items are my Amazon picks.

A diagraph puzzle.

To strengthen my daughters reading skills I have been going back over concepts to make the reading process easier for her. She is currently in First Grade and although she knows the sounds letters makes she often gets tripped up when it comes to diagraphs.

A diagraph is when two letters are put together and make one sound. For example ch in the word cheese is a diagraph. C goes /k/ and h goes /h/ when on their own. When the two letters are combined they make one sound like in cheese, much, and chill for examples. C and h can also make the sound /k/ as in chaos, school, and chronic. C and h when combined can also make the sound sh as in chef, machine, and brochure.

My daughters enjoy puzzles often to make the learning process a little more enjoyable I make and use puzzles that correlate with what we are working on. For diagraphs I made two sets of similar puzzles that I laminated for durability.

Diagraph puzzle with pictures and words. For my youngest daughter (age 3) to be introduced to the concept letters put together make words. Also to allow her to match the letters.
Diagraph puzzle with pictures. I made a set without pictures that way my oldest daughter had to concentrate on the sound each picture made rather than look at the way it was written.

As a parent that homeschools I often find myself having to re-teach myself therefore I often make myself simple charts to reference to keep me on track when I explain concepts to my daughters. In which I made a quick reference poster to explain what a diagraph is. I also made a chart that goes along with the puzzles.

A diagraph is when…
Diagraph chart.

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Posters above are my Amazon picks for helpful posters when it comes to teaching phonics.

Winter theme with Red Apple Tree and Blue Eye Guy coloring page for early readers.

Sight Words in bold font for quick identification. To remind early readers those are words best memorized rather than sounded out.
Empty space to allow a child to express their creativity and add a background. Snowflakes for example. Also they can add a hat to the snowman. Maybe they want to add a jacket and a scarf.
Without words to make the characters larger to color on.

Not only is the coloring page a great way to get in more reading and sight word practice they can also be cut out and made into puppets. My oldest daughters idea, both my daughters enjoy creating puppet shows. It’s a great way to incorporate scissor practice as well.

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Items shown above are my Amazon picks for sight word learning.

Learning through play; The Elves Workshop.

My daughters are ages 3 and 7 and trying to find fun play based learning activities that bridge their age gap can be difficult. Therefore I often provide my own in which we can play together and incorporate as much learning within the activity as possible. My daughter’s love holidays and all things presents. We decided to set up our own Elves Workshop, in which my oldest wrapped a bunch of her own toys to place under the tree in her bedroom for the game. I made shape presents to incorporate shape learning into the activity. I also made presents with a text box upon them that way I could write in the sight words we are currently working on.

We made bracelets and sight word learning trees with the presents in which we used as ornaments to hang upon our tree.

Tree with holiday presents wrapped by my oldest.
The game was a mess although worth it because it kept them interested enough to get in some learning.
An example of what the presents look like.
I wrote sight words down on the present cards to turn the game into a chance to practice sight words. Later we made sight word trees to hang on the holiday tree.
Sight word trees.

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Items listed above are my Amazon picks.

Thanksgiving theme coloring pages with Nana Hedgehog, Red Apple Tree, and Blue Eye Guy.

With a long weekend coming up I decided to make a few Thanksgiving theme coloring pages for my daughters (ages 3 and 7) and I to color together during the holiday weekend. I added sentences for early readers to encourage my oldest to read and practice sight words. The sight words are in bold font as a quick reminder that those words are best memorized rather than sounded out each time.

My oldest daughter insisted she wanted a turkey on a cake coloring page to go along with a Thanksgiving theme. In which she drew me up her design and wrote a sentence to go along with it. Which gave her extra writing practice for the day. If you also have a stubborn learner that often turns to art and doodles during lessons encouraging them to design their own reading coloring pages can be a helpful way to get in writing practice on their most stubborn days and allow them to freely express their creativity.

My daughters original design.

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Above items are my Amazon picks.

Using early reading coloring pages to supplement our learning.

I started a letter of the week strategy with my youngest several months ago. Although we fell off the routine quickly because she wasn’t quite ready for a more strict routine. With her third birthday coming up in a few days I felt it was time to try again. This week we are starting with the letter Aa. A is for apple.

It can be a struggle to find activities appropriate for both my daughters that we can do together. I often turn to early reading coloring pages. In which I write simple words to caption an image they get to color. I know coloring doesn’t seem like learning, although it allows us an opportunity to spend time together having fun and getting a little extra learning in. Spending time together is a part of the reason why we chose to homeschool in the first place.

Today we used coloring pages to cover several skills at the same time.

-Sight words (Written on the early reading coloring pages.)
-Early reading
-Shapes (We used shape stickers on our coloring pages.)
-Colors (We talked about the colors we used to color with, and what color each shape was.)
-Fine motor skills (Coloring allows for teaching proper grip, adding in stickers gave extra fine motor practice as my youngest ripped the backings off each sticker.)
-Letter recognition (Aa is for apple coloring page.)

Today re-printed out some coloring pages I made last year for an apple theme learning unit. To represent Aa is for apple. We also got around to coloring our fun Birthday theme coloring pages. In which my daughters grabbed out fun shape stickers to add in as extra decorations. In which gave me an opportunity to add in shape recognition.

We used shape stickers to outline the letter Aa.
My oldest colored and read the sentence to my youngest.
Using shape stickers to decorate a Birthday cake. Allowing my youngest to improve her fine motor skills and work on shape recognition at the same time.
My oldest placed googly eyes all over the cake as she read the sentence to me.
During coloring time my oldest decided to draw a picture of a bear with a bee. She used googly sticker eyes in her picture.

(I am a participant in the Amazon Associates Program and any qualifying purchases made through affiliate links I may earn a commission on at no additional cost to you.)
Items above are my Amazon picks. The “We See Colors with Red and Blue” is a book personally written and illustrated by me available for purchase through Amazon.

Click the image above to print out the free Birthday theme coloring pages.
Click image above to print out the free apple theme coloring pages.

Birthday coloring pages for early readers.

I often make coloring pages for my daughters with simple sentences perfect for early readers. I use the coloring pages as a way to slip in more sight word and reading practice in a fun relaxed way. I tend to keep the pages simple that way my daughters can add their own drawings on the pages. I use bold font for all sight words as a quick indicator to my daughter that it is a sight word and it’s best to be memorized rather than sounded out. This time I went with fun Birthday theme coloring pages. If your young learners have a birthday coming up soon these coloring pages are perfect to add in throughout the day for extra reading.

(I am a participant in the Amazon Associates Program and any qualifying purchases made through affiliate links I may earn a commission on at no additional cost to you.)
Above items are my Amazon picks.