Play: Window Words
Our family has used Hooked on Phonics to teach our older two kids to read and we have just loved it. The way that it is set up is that a child is introduced to a blend, and are then given words that have that blend in them to practice. After a few pages of this, the child gets to read a story- either a short one in the workbook or a “stand alone” book that comes with the set. For both Asante and Aly, the stories have been very interesting to them, really holding their attention. But once it was time to review a page full of words, the motivation really waned. Can you blame them? It was kind of boring for us too. We tried a variety of ways to “spice up” the practice, and one way that worked particularly well was using window words.
She would move the window around and stop on words that she could read. After she read it successfully, she could color it in with a yellow marker.
She was having so much fun with it that Asante requested one. For Asante, we requested that he not only read the word, but also that he used the word in a sentence. We chose some that were a little above his reading level, and we also chose some that had similar prefixes or roots so that he could “discover” the patterns. We also threw in some words that we knew he wouldn’t know the meanings of so that it could be a conversational piece.
And then Ada, of course, wanted to have her own too. We’re still working on her recognition of the letters. Once we’ve conquered that, we’ll move on to having her say the letter and the sound.
You could use this idea for more than just reading- maybe in practicing a foreign language, committing those math facts to memory. One thing that I really liked about this activity is that it is versatile to many age levels. There aren’t too many activities that our 2, 4, and 5 year old can all do together and feel intellectually challenged. It brought a little joy to my heart to see all three sitting at the table, having fun and helping one another out!
So no matter where your child is on the reading spectrum, window word play is a fun way to practice reading! Feel free to check out some of our examples here.