High-frequency words are words that occur most frequently in written material and do not follow phonetic rules or, as we say in the EL Education curriculum, "don't play fair." Due to this fact, it is important that students are able to navigate these words with ease to improve their reading fluency and comprehension. While high-frequency words on their own don't carry much meaning, they are essential to sentences and help students gather meaning. Below you will find five activities for each day of the week that teachers can do with students or parents can do with their children at home as high-frequency words are being introduced cycle by cycle.
- Read it, say it, write it, read it again
- Use high-frequency words in sentences (oral and written)
- Read a list of high-frequency words and time yourself on fluency (keep running list)
- Search for high frequency words in sentences / poems and underline them
- Fishing for high-frequency words (one person reads the word aloud, other students find the word in a stack of other high-frequency words)
The instructional practices listed below summarize the instruction that accompanies the skills that are being taught in this cycle for the respective grade level. Teachers should review these routines for guidance on how to teach the skills and patterns reflected in the microphase.
A variety of activities introduces and reviews material and routines during this introductory cycle.
Cycle Word List
In this cycle, students review the understanding that every syllable in a spoken word contains a vowel sound and that the vowel sound can be "shown" in print by a letter or a particular pattern of letters. Closed, open, and CVCe syllable types, introduced and worked with in first grade, are reviewed. In addition, they begin to review and practice decoding two-syllable words with those syllable types. Examples of words used this cycle include:
Engagement Text and Decodable Readers
The text listed below can be utilized to reinforce the skills taught in the cycle. Teachers can use the text to have students apply their learning during small group work or teacher-led groups. By focusing on the skills/patterns being taught, students can apply their learning to text. A list of activities to consider with the text are listed in the activity section.
A pale insect rests in the shade
While a frog hops along singing a song.
His music makes me smile wide.
The wind lifts my cap up into the sky.
A branch cracks and drops.