Kiddo is loving this new thing called reading. She's made huge strides and is absorbing everything she can, reading every subway sign, all of the pamphlets in the seat pockets of airplanes....just loving this HUGE world that's been opened up to her.
Part of what we did when she was just figuring out words was create a word wall at home, similar to what she had in her kindergarten classroom. We covered the wall by her bed with words - some of the ones she'd run across the most in her books, some other favorite words (like yellow, for her favorite color, tiger and leopard, her favorite big cat animals). At night, she'd read all of the words on her word wall and head off to dreamland. It was great.
But, now, of course, she knows all of the words, so we have to pick some new words for her wall. I'm checking out the Dolch word list, which is a list of 220 "service words" (words that kids run across most often in reading) and 95 nouns, broken down by grade. Here's a snapshot of some of that list:
This is an excellent springboard for your word wall, but there are many ways you can make a word wall word just right for your kids:
-- Make a phonics word wall. Especially with beginning readers, as kids are just figuring out sounds, make a wall with words of the same sounds: words starting with st-, th-, pl- and so on, and ending with the same like -ot, -all, - ox, and -et.
-- Make an interest word wall. If your kiddo is into trucks and cars, make a wall of words that go with that: construction, wheel, lift, drive and so on. If she's into dinosaurs, put up the names of different dinosaurs and eras. You can do anything from music (think about all of the different instruments and terms) to sports to animals to space.
-- Make a basic everyday word wall. All of the things she may come across like colors, numbers, directions (up, left, right, backwards), days of the week, months of the year.
-- Make a definitions word wall. This is for kids who are reading already, and it's such a great idea that I got from a mommy friend of mine. Put up words like self-discipline or perseverance, gratitude, courage, tolerance and so on, along with kid-friendly definitions so they can learn and absorb those words and meanings. It's awesome to tap into that love of reading to help them teach themselves some inner strengthing words.
Do you have words up in your home? Share how your kids "play" with words too!