High Frequency Sight Word
Story Writing

• This is a small group activity.

• Index cards, paper and pencil are required.

• Recommended grade level is 2 or 3. Skills addressed include:
- writing complete sentences
- reading common sight words
- spelling common sight words
- generating ideas for story writing
- writing short texts

Description:

1. Choose one column of High-Frequency Sight Words and one column of Nouns. Assign students to write each word from the columns on a single card: first student writes first word on a card, second student writes the second on a second card, etc.

2. On the back of the cards with nouns, write “Noun.” Keep the nouns and the non-nouns as two separate decks.

3. Gather and shuffle the non-noun cards. Do the same for the noun cards.

4. Each group picks 3 noun cards and 6 cards from the other deck.

5. Each group works together to make up a verbal story that uses all of the words on the cards. They should arrange the cards in the order that they occur in their story to help them remember the story.

6. Using the cards as a guide, the group writes their story using pencil and paper. Each word from the cards should be circled. Save the written story and the set of cards used.

7. Later, possibly on another day, the groups exchange their sets of cards.

8. First ask them to look at their written story and count how many of the OTHER group’s cards were used, even though they didn't see the cards before. Have each group report its results. Were the words that were used noun cards or cards from the other pile? How many of each?

Extension:

Repeat the story writing using the new cards. Then have the groups read aloud their stories that were written for the same cards read aloud. Compare them. How are they alike? How are they different?

Variation:

After the stories have been written, collect the word cards keeping the noun cards and the other cards separate. Ask a student to draw 5 cards from the non-noun pile and read the words aloud to the class, one by one.

Each group should search their story and if they find the word, circle it.

Ask another student to draw 5 more cards from the non-noun pile and repeat the process.

Do this for all the cards in the non-noun pile. Then have the groups count the number of circled words in their story and write it down.

Count the number of words that weren’t circled and write it. Compare the results.

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