Daily 5: Chapter 6

Word Work

1. Experimenting with words for learning and practicing a spelling pattern (brainstorm a list of ways you can do this).
Kindergartners need a variety of ways to explore sight words. I try to vary it up. I have used playdough, letter stamps, and letter manipulatives (letter unifix cubes and letter beads). I even spent one summer cutting out letters from magazines, glued them on cardstock, and had them laminated! I was a bit crazy! Even though it was over 10 years ago, I still use them for letter manipulatives.

 Last year, some of my kinderkids made their names out of blocks and we took pictures.

This year, I want to have my students use blocks to make letters or sight words. I think it would be neat for them to also take pictures and keep them in a book. On TPT, I want to use these Snap cubes. I will have my students start making letters out of snap cubes first, then make words. I think some of my boys (& girls) will have fun with this!

2. Memorize high frequency words ( How often do you introduce new words? Do your students have their own list of words that they can work on? How will you keep track of words that they already know). I add 3-5 words per week, introducing them using the 4 Blocks Model. We keep track of our words on the word wall. My kindergarten team and I send home a VHS case for sight words. We have 6 colored sets of words based on the DOLCH word list. When a child has mastered a list, he brings his case of words back, and gets tested. If mastered, he gets the next set of words. A star is put on his sheet that is the cover of the VHS case and I also keep track by highlighting the words known (kept in my literacy binder). Some of the kindergarten teachers use first grade words when they have completed the 6 sets of words. I prefer not to rely on sight words lists at that point. Instead I encourage reading, as that is how we pick up new vocabulary.

3. Generalize spelling patterns (brainstorm a list of ways you can do this).
Some word wall words have patterns- put star on them after learn about the pattern. Word wall family books. Music. Cooperative learning strategies- All-Write Robin. Below are my students working in small groups brainstorming a list of rhyming words. Basically, each child gets a turn to write a word for the rhyming family. The others may help by giving clues. They keep going around writing as many words as they can in a 2-3 minute time period.

We also make words and sort words by their rimes. My students know if they know how to spell one word, they can spell many words because they are familiar with the pattern.

We also make art projects to go with our rhyming families. This one is -at. In first grade, I had my students use magazines to find letters to make -at words. In kindergarten, I do the same activity, but differentiate for those who need it. Some students write beginning sounds to ___at to make their at words. My cat template is at school. I will go in next week. So I will update in a couple of weeks to include that activity here. For now, you can click the picture to get the ___at worksheet. Updated 8/19/12 with Cat template and at worksheet, click picture below to go to google docs.

4. Adding to our knowledge and curiosity of unique and interesting words. (What is the best way to do this?) Make a theme word sight word list on pocket chart. Sometimes I write the words beforehand and find clipart for those words. Sometimes, my students illustrate words. Other times, my students predict words for the unit. Then we add as we learn new ones.

In the new school year, I hope to include Kim Adsit's anchor chart for vocabulary.

Other things to think about: What materials do I already have? What materials would I like to get? How will I store them? Where will students work?
I feel I have a variety of material. I'm not sure what else I would like. Guess I'll have to see what everyone else plans to do with word work. I store my supplies in crates and small containers (baby wipes containers are great!). In previous years, my centers have assigned areas, but children can move around the room. Now, I want to try out 4 different areas with all Daily 5 stations in each area. Children will rotate each day through the stations. One of the games I used last year:
Learning with Mrs. Parker's Roll a Sight Word

One of the teachers at my school went ahead and made the game on colored paper to match our 6 sets of sight words. This was a great way to differentiate, as the students worked on the words they were on.

I'll be linking up with the Kindergarten Daily 5. Looking forward to seeing the Daily 5 ideas!


  1. Hi Gwen, I am on a quest to follow as many K blogs as possible since I will be working with this level in the fall for the first time. I am glad I found your blog...you have some great tips/ideas. I'd love for you to visit my blog sometime.
    Adventures In Teaching

  2. What an amazing amount of awesome ideas you have! I love Daily 5 and think its just amazing how it can work in Kinder too! :) I love the block idea.

    Reaching for the TOP!


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