Dolch Sight Words Games & Activities

Instructor: Eric Campos

Eric has tutored in English, writing, history, and other subjects.

The ability to recognize Dolch sight words is crucial for beginning readers as they develop their literacy skills. Continue reading to learn about fun games and activities that can help your child learn Dolch sight words.

What Are Dolch Sight Words?

In 1948, William Edward Dolch came up with a list of English words that are easier for young readers to learn by sight than by sounding out. The best way to teach students these 220 sight words is to get them engaged in the learning process through games and activities. Below are a few examples to get you started.

Sight Word Bingo

You can find the bingo cards needed to play this fun group activity through a quick internet search or by creating a 4x4 grid of your own. Be sure to make a variety of different cards and print enough combinations for each student, depending on how many rounds you wish to play. Once you've passed them out, it's as easy as calling out a word from a pool of sight words you wrote down for yourself. Do this until a student lines up enough words in a row. This exercise will not only demonstrate students' ability to visibly identify sight words, but also that they know the pronunciations. Here's an example of what a student's bingo card might look like:

him off read don't
which before tell very
many read of seven
pick see that think

Sight Word Hopscotch

This variation of hopscotch can be played in small groups or individually at home for review. No matter the group size, this will bring outdoor recreation and constructive learning together in a fun activity. The only materials you'll need are chalk and a bean bag. Draw several hopscotch boxes on the ground with the chalk and then write a sight word in each. Give the bean bag to your students and have them toss it into one of the boxes you created. They must speak the word written in the box it lands on before they can move onto the box. Have them repeat this process until they reach the other side. This will demonstrate that they can pronounce and identify each sight word.

Word Search Activity

Design a word search puzzle that consists of several sight words and write it on the board. Divide students into two groups and give each one a list of sight words hidden in the puzzle. The groups will take turns circling the sight words they find throughout the puzzle.

This crossword puzzle can easily be used to play other activities. Here's another idea: instead of each team circling the sight words in the crossword puzzle, have them write down a sight word on the board and then cross out the letters from the puzzle that are found in each word. Continue until all the letters are used up. Whichever team has the most sight words wins! Not only are these activities great for reviewing sight words, but they also encourage strategy and team cooperation.

Additional Resources

Whether you're a teacher or proactive parent, offers several resources to help you better understand sight words and find new ways to apply them in your lessons:

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