Dolch Words

Discussion in 'Elementary Education Archives' started by teacherbell, Jun 13, 2007.

  1. teacherbell

    teacherbell Cohort

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    Jun 13, 2007

    What are your best tips for introducing Dolch words? How many do you do per week and what kind of assessment tools do you use? Also, I am trying to decide if I want to do a word wall for Dolch words and one for reading vocabulary words or just do one word wall. Thank thank you in advance! I teach first grade if that helps!:)
     
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  3. Carolyn

    Carolyn Rookie

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    Jun 13, 2007

    I attended a Debbie Diller workshop and a teacher brought a picture of her word wall. She put her sight words on yellow stars and other words on index cards. That way, students could quickly refer to the word wall and look for the stars if they are needing help spelling a sight word. I am going to do this next year.

    I focus on one sight word a week. It is also included as part of their spelling test. They are given a decodable sentence they have to write which includes the sight word and a word with the spelling pattern that we are studying besides the spelling words they are tested over. They practice with other sight words at their workstations and they have a ringlet of sight words on cards in their browsing boxes they flip through and read during familiar reading time.
    Hope this helps.
     
  4. mhirsch

    mhirsch Companion

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    Jun 15, 2007

    I use turtle words from turtlewords.net and assign five a week.
     
  5. corps2005

    corps2005 Cohort

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    Jun 15, 2007

    I assign 5 a week that we practice in class. But I also give my students diagnostics at the beginning of the year to see what words they already know. Then, every two weeks they receive word cards that have about 10 sight words on them. Every two weeks I test them to see if they know the words.

    I also have a giant poster of a treehouse with a ladder reaching up to it. (Lakeshore) I covered up the numbers in the middle b/c it was supposed to be used to measure height. I broke the sight words into 4 segments with the treehouse being 220 (our goal was for each student to be able to read/spell 220 sight words by the end of first grade). As students show me they know the words, I move their clip up. Each clip shows the number of words that student knows, so it serves as a reminder to them. The kids were so excited to get the chance to move up their clips! Everyday a student wanted me to test him/her.

    When 80% of the class reaches the treehouse, the class earned a group reward. This year they'll be striving to earn a class pet.
     
  6. Upsadaisy

    Upsadaisy Moderator

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    Jun 15, 2007

    Do you worry about the low kids, or kids with dyslexia, who consistently find their clips at the bottom?
     
  7. corps2005

    corps2005 Cohort

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    Jun 15, 2007

    Well, I did have 3 students who were always at the bottom. One girl couldn't get beyond 6 words and that was a struggle to have her remember those. I've decided that this year, I'm going to take numbers off the clips themselves, but I'll still have the blocked numbers on the tree.

    I guess it wasn't a big deal in the classroom because we emphasized hard work. Even if a person didn't get to a certain level, the kids would always chime in saying that person worked really hard and asked if I was proud of them. I would always reply yes. The lower kids really didn't seem bothered by it. In the beginning of the year, yes it was harder, because I was still working on rallying everyone around our classroom culture. Within a couple of months, the children would repeat my saying "We all learn differently and that's okay."

    Another idea I've been playing with is breaking the tree into colored blocks, so kids would have to climb up the four colored sections until they reached the treehouse. Of course, it all depends on the class. I might be so lucky next year to have all the children rallied around helping each other and understanding that it's okay to be different as long as they work hard. :p
     
  8. CBean

    CBean Rookie

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    Jun 17, 2007

    A great way to motivate your students and teach the words is with Rainbow Words. (see www.rainbowwords.com). Basically, you choose the words you want to teach and then break them up into 6 groups, one for each color of the rainbow. You post a big rainbow on a bulletin board and then post words on each color arc as you introduce them (usually a few per week). It's easier to see onthe website than how I am explaining it.

    ANyway, the students have to learn all 6 words in the purple arc and then they get to color in the purple arc on their own paper and they get a little award certificate or pencil. Then they learn words that are posted on the blue arc, green, and so on so it's a great motivational tool - not quite as boring as memorizing lists on paper. Each arc is successively bigger, so each arc holds more words and is more challenging.

    You can send lists home to the parents and give them activities they can do with their children to make it fun. The letters to the parents in Spanish and English too! The kids love it because they feel special when they "pass" a color. Some of them gets really serious about getting to the final red arc and just practice, practice, practice.

    It's also great because I can see who is stuck on the purple arc (I, a, the, in, it, was) and who is zooming through and on red before everyone else.
     
  9. Erin Elizabeth

    Erin Elizabeth Groupie

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    Jun 17, 2007

    Making Word Walls Work by Judy Lynch is a great resource for teaching sight words. I use her system and had great success with it. I'm a little biased, because Judy and I belong to the same local reading council and I think the world of her and her teaching!
     

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