Practicing reading skills by digging through sand for word cards.

My oldest daughter (age 6) is a reluctant reader. Trying to find ways to keep her interested can be exhausting. I’m always looking and coming up with new ideas to keep her interested with the reading process to help develop strong reading skills. When it comes to learning sight words she often tries to sound them out and I remind her that sight words are best to learn by memory because they’re words that aren’t always easy to sound out. I made sight word cards and cvc cards that I laminated for durability and can be used in different activities. The cvc cards have dots below letters to remind her those words are best when sounded out, as the sight word cards have no dots because they’re best to be memorized. The sight word cards I printed out in more than one level and placed dot stickers upon the back that way I could color code the different sight word levels to remember which words were from which list. I pulled out the cards recently to hide within sand to switch our routine up and make reading/writing time more fun.

She enjoyed the activity, being able to dig for the word cards made her more willing to read off the words on the card. If she didn’t know the word she allowed me to read it to her. Usually she gets discouraged and gives up, because she enjoyed digging through the sand it held her interest and she was more willing to keep trying. I also had her write out the words she dug out and I did the same as I dug out words. Which is a huge bonus because she isn’t always willing to write either.

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Above laminator is the one I use to laminate all of the games and activities I print out for my children. The above books, teaching tools, and games are what I use to help strengthen and reinforce my daughters reading skills.

Click image above for another way to use the sight word and cvc cards.
click image above for another way to use the sight word and cvc word cards.
Click image above for a fun bee theme sight word game.
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Shapes coloring pages for early readers with sight words.

My youngest daughter (age 2) is currently learning her shapes and my oldest daughter (age 6) is learning how to read. An activity that bridges the age gap between the two of them is coloring. Coloring is something we can do together as my youngest works on her fine motor skills and my oldest is able to take a break from strict learning materials. I used dashed lines on the shapes to allow my youngest daughter to practice tracing as well as coloring.

I try to add in short sentences for early readers on the coloring pages to add in additional reading practice for my oldest that becomes overwhelmed and doesn’t always want to sit down and read a book. Adding reading onto the coloring pages makes it feel less school-like for her. She often confuses the words this, that, these, and those for each other. Therefore I used those sight words on the coloring pages to give my daughter additional practice.

(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 shown above are shape puzzles and toys we use in our home to learn shapes.

Click the image above for more shape learning ideas.
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Read, play, and learn Polar animals activity.

Where we live it has been cold and snowing the past few days. Therefore a short unit talking about Polar animals felt fitting. My daughters (age 2 and 6) are still at the ages in which their attention spans are short which in response I keep our lessons simple yet informative. In order to remember the main information I want to share with my children I often make fact sheets to read to them. With the main ideas that keep our lessons straight to the point and helps me remember the facts as I guide them through the lesson.

My youngest daughter (age 2) is working on her verbal communication and taking in new words to build a larger vocabulary. On the other side my oldest daughter (age 6) is learning to read and write. I made an activity using polar animals that would help my oldest to read and write, my youngest to expand her vocabulary, and provide them both with a fun sorting activity in which they sort the animals into the correct Polar Region.

The cards can also be used in sentences for early readers to read. For additional learning the child can even write the sentences themselves to practice their writing. I wrote the sentences down on a dry erase board.

Sentences for early readers.

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My Amazon picks for informative books to go along with the theme.

Click the image below for an additional activity involving penguins.

Christmas theme Characters to hide, find, and read.

My oldest daughter doesn’t always feel up for learning. She often rolls her eyes, and explains that it isn’t school time. Whenever I try to add in additional sight word practice. Personally trying to expose my daughter to all the sight words she’s suppose to be reading by the end of Kindergarten can often be difficult and feel overwhelming.

Therefore I pick four words a week to focus on. In which I write on a piece of notebook paper I laminated and hung on a wall. I laminated the paper to make it durable and re-useable. Something I quickly learned about school at home is how much paper waste is created. Also the amount of ink I go through is often ridiculous which is why I had chose to use a lined piece of notebook paper rather than wasting ink and time making a sheet on the computer. Every school day I try to get my daughter to write the words of the week out on handwriting paper for writing practice and extra sight word practice.

For the month of December I made four Christmas theme characters for my daughter to hide, find, and read. I laminate each character for durability and that way they’re dry erase. I switch out the words on the characters to correlate with the words of the week. Therefore the printable has no words in the open space that way the words can be switched out often. As we play I often tell her riddles to help her find the more difficult hiding spots. She enjoys finding the characters, and I can often get her to read the words to me. If she’s unsure of a word she hesitates and then I go ahead and help her read it. I wait for her cue that way I don’t give her the answer to soon.

My youngest age two plays along with us. Her method of playing is hiding as many characters as possible under items in our living room. Pushing them as far under giggling as she does.

If you don’t have easy access to a printer there are plenty of alternatives even for a Christmas theme hide, find, and read activity. If you have a Christmas theme coloring book you can allow kids to color the pages themselves pick out their favorite characters and cut them out. You can laminate the coloring pages for durability. If you don’t have a laminator it’s still a great activity just write the words on whatever your child chose and hide them throughout the house. Each time they find a character ask them to read the word to you, allow them the chance to try and then if they’re struggling have them repeat the word after you. Go ahead and hide it again until they show signs of disinterest. If they stop wanting to read the word that is ok, just read it for them and allow them to keep looking for characters, all you can do is keep trying and not push to hard.

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The posters and placemats shown above are what I use in my home for additional sight word support.

Thanks for stopping by LearningWithNanaHedgehog.com. Please remember any activities found on LearningwithNanaHedgehog.com are meant to be done with adult supervision. Any printable activities are for personal use only and are to be shared through original link.

If interested in printing out different characters to hide around the house that aren’t a Christmas theme click the image below.