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Blog: Blog2

Building Confidence

Updated: Mar 3, 2020

Like every parent, I had my rite of passage attending my daughter’s kindergarten orientation trying not to cry. After the presentation the teachers asked if there were any questions. I couldn’t resist. I asked how they taught high frequency words and if there was a specific list they used. They answered (not exactly how I’d hoped, but acknowledged the importance of them).

After the orientation another mom walked up and asked me, ‘What exactly were you asking? Were you speaking a foreign language?’ We both had a laugh. I explained what high frequency words were and the importance of them at this age. She had no idea. I know this mom, she is amazing, involved, highly educated, but she still wasn’t aware of the simple pieces to help make reading easy for her child. (One of the many signs I have received from the Universe that this was my calling.)

High frequency words are words we commonly use in speech and see in text. It is encouraged that children learn these by sight- memorize. Learning to quickly recognize and read these words help with fluency and reading confidence.

Although some high frequency words can be decoded (sounded out), some do not follow phonetic rules. For example, “it” is a high frequency word that can be sounded out following phonetic rules short /i/ and /t/ sound. The word “was” is an example of a high frequency word that does not follow phonetic rules. If you were to sound it out it may sound like putting the /w/ sound followed by the word ‘as’. But really when we say this word it comes out as /w/ /u/ /z/. ‘Was’ should be memorized, something your child can recognize by site.

High Frequency Words are easy to find. Simply search for High Frequency Words or Sight Words. You can also look by age- there are suggested list that grow with age. Memorizing these words (and many more) by sight is really helpful for later reading skills. It will help with automaticity and fluency, most importantly build confidence. We love confident readers, right moms?

These skills don’t need to be foreign to you! If you haven’t already, follow my page on Facebook where I share an activity every Saturday. This month I’m focusing on confidence. I will be spotlighting activities like learning high frequency words and more to build your little one’s reading confidence.

I want to help make pre-literacy skills mainstream in every little one’s home. Thank you for helping me on this mission!


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