Words in the Sand

Learning sight words can be a challenge for young children. Many times they are words that are not able to be sounded out phonetically, making them difficult for early readers. The best way to learn them is by repetition and help from parents and teachers. My twin preschoolers are just getting started learning some of the basic sight words. They are busy boys who love making messes and can’t sit still for more than five minutes. I knew that I was going to have to get creative with how I helped them learn, so off to Pinterest I went. I found so many fun ways to engage my boys in learning. I’d like to share our favorite.

For this activity you are going to need the following:

  • A baking sheet
  • Table salt, sand, or something of the same texture
  • Index cards
  • Markers
  • A list of sight words. I found mine at https://sightwords.com/sight-words/dolch/#lists. Check with your child’s teacher to see which lists they use in their curriculum.

On the index cards write one word per card. Set your baking sheet on a flat surface easily accessible to your child, I used my dining room table. Pour your salt/sand into the baking sheet until it is about halfway full. Next have your child use their finger to write a word from one of the index cards in the salt. Have your child say each letter as they copy them into the sand, then when they have finished writing the word have them say the word out loud. When ready for the next word, give the baking sheet a little shake to even out the salt and move to the next word.

My kids love this. They get to be a little messy, and they are learning something new. I hope that your kids will enjoy this as much as mine. See you next Tuesday!