Brain-Friendly Ways to Teach Sight Words


Did you know that there are 109 words in the English language that account for 50% of written English in children’s texts? Did you know that 13 of those account for 25%?

We call these high-frequency words. These high-leverage, high-frequency words are absolutely worth teaching.

In fact, we want these high-frequency words to become sight words (recognized with automaticity and accuracy) as quickly as possible.

How We Teach Sight Words Matters

BUT we need to teach them according to how the reading brain learns to read them.

When I first learned the brain research about 5 years ago, I was convicted that I had been using and teaching others to use some unhelpful and even some harmful practices to “teach” sight words.

I am now doing everything I can to rectify this! That’s why I want to invite you to a BYOC (Bring Your Own Coffee) –our series of free bite-sized PD webinars:

Simple and Brain-Friendly Ways to Teach Sight Words
(What to Do and What NOT to Do)

How to Know If You Should Watch This Webinar

Below is a list of common practices that I see in classrooms:

  • Using flashcards to learn sight words
  • Telling students or parents that these words need to be memorized
  • Rainbow words
  • Drawing shapes around words
  • Writing the words multiple times
  • Exposing students to the words in shared reading and hoping they would get them through repetition
  • Chanting the spellings of words
  • Posting sight words on an alphabetic word wall

If you are using any of these, this webinar is for you. And no judgment here. I have at some point in my teaching career used every single one.

Yes, I have done all of those. But now that I know better, I do better.

What About Tricky Sight Words?

Maybe you don’t do any of those things, but you don’t know what the brain research says about learning tricky sight words.

Or maybe you have wondered why kids have trouble remembering the difference between words like want and went, or was and saw. ‘Is this a sign of dyslexia?’ you have maybe asked.

In this webinar, I will answer all of these questions and give you some super simple tips that you can use right away. No prep involved! A few small moves with a big impact.

Simple and Brain-Friendly Ways to Teach Sight Words (What to Do and What NOT to Do)

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