Thousands of parents have voiced their frustration with sight words to us before trying our approach. For a natural-born reader memorizing sight words is an adequate way to teach reading. For any other student, it is frustrating and does not produce good results.
Many schools give students sight words before the students are ready. Visually memorizing how a word “looks” is not how the brain learns to read. Memorizing whole words by sight is unsuccessful and wastes time for students who struggle with reading. Giving a child sight words before they have a strong sound-symbol and strong word patterns relationships is premature and causes a great deal of frustration for everyone.
Options for sight words
We take a different approach. We teach sight words through a direct and simple systematic phonics approach. We teach children to decode words first and have them reading before we introduce any sight words that are not phonetically true. At that point, we typically do not have to teach any sight words. The student already has learned them through a phonics approach. This approach is much less frustrating!