Learning to Read: Sight Word Activities

With school back in session in Australia, I know that many children are beginning the process of learning to read. One common strategy that forms the process of learning to read in many classrooms is the process of learning to read sight words.

Learning to Read: Sight Word Activities

Sight Word Learning

Sight words are high frequency words that we use a lot in both verbal and written communication, words like the, come, to, with and where. Unfortunately, they are also usually irregularly spelt, making them difficult for children to sound out phonetically.  By learning these words by sight, children are able to read (and write) more fluently which is important to good comprehension. If your teacher is incorporating sight word learning into the class reading program, it is likely that they have already sent home word lists, flashcards and/or activity ideas for helping children to learn these high frequency words.

Helping your child to learn their list of sight words usually involves lots of repetition but it doesn’t have to be dull and laborious. As with all early learning, adding a touch of playfulness to your practice time can help to engage your child more fully with the learning experience.

We offer lots of fun suggestions for engaging children with sight word learning in our Sight Word Games Pack.

Sight word games pack printable

You’ll also find lots of playful suggestions for learning sight words in our 50 Playful Sight Word Activity Ideas post.

50 Playful Sight Word Activity Ideas


  1. Oh I remember the magic and frustration of learning site words!

    We had them stuck ALL over the house, but by far the best thing I did was make a set with old magnets stuck to the back so the girls could make sentences on the fridge.

    You know, some days I thought they’d never learn them and we’d live in frustration land forever… but here we are 2 years later and they are reading chapter books in a day! Bring on the magic of reading!

  2. Amanda Eastment says:

    I don’t think Miss M has started learning them yet (in Prep) but I will put this post somewhere safe so I can refer back to it when she does. So many great ideas, Christie. Thank you : )

  3. Great! wish your blog with connected to Pinterest!

  4. MultipleMum says:

    A very timely post for me! Nugget seems to have had a photographic memory with sight words. Looked at them once, never forgot them. Had ticked off his first 600 by the start of Year 1. Doo Dah brought his first chart home last week. He seems to be a much more ‘normal’ sight word learner. The fun and games begin. He will love some of those ideas so I will get cracking! x

  5. These are GREAT ideas for sight words. I know children also enjoy finding them in things that are around them everyday, like signs you pass on your drive, boxes of food, and at the grocery store.

    Another fun idea is to pull out old greeting cards from your child’s last birthday or a holiday and to make a placemat sight word collage! Then they can find the words at mealtimes and enjoy remembering who those words are from. Fun, fun! 🙂

  6. I hate homework. But the basics, like sight words and times tables are so important. Making it fun is definitely the key. One I wish I’d read years ago….

  7. Your ideas are ecxellent! I wii definately apply some of them in my class! Thank you!

  8. Karina Ranaldi says:

    Fantastic post! Great ideas to try and get them motivated in a fun way rather than flashing cards in front of them. My daughter was 3 when I first started her on sight words. The more creative we were when learning the sight words the better memory retention she developed. We played a fantastic game of popcorn where words were written on little cardboard popcorn pieces and placed inside a popcorn cup. We would each take out a word and say the word. If we called it right, we got to keep the word. If we called it wrong, we had to put it back. There were also popcorn pieces in the box which had the word “pop” and every time we pulled one of those out we would have to put all our popcorn back in the box. It wasn’t long before she learn’t most of her words! I also found there is so much to gain from the use of iPhone and iPad educational games. After much thought I developed a Sight Words app that brought entertainment and education together. The response has been overwhelming and has ranked in the Top 50 for educational apps. My daughter loves to play and has provided her that extra reinforcement!

    Sight Words Learn to Read

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