A Sight Word Solution

Sight words are my worst enemy so naturally I'm attempting become a better sight word teacher. After all only 100 sight words, make up over 50% of the words students will ever read. Many of these words cannot be sounded out phonetically and thus must be known at sight, instantly.

But when do you have time to teach them? Students are at all different levels so that is another obstacle to tackle. Being the perfectionist I am, I have to make sure each student has the right level words that are not too easy yet not too difficult.

It seems every sight word program requires a lot of prep work, testing time one on one with the teacher, mass amounts of organization (for all the words!), and copies.

I'm not saying sight word programs/systems are bad, I think they work and some of them are great especially this one from Finally in First:
Click on the picture to learn more about 'Sight Word Superstars'
I really considered using it except I decided I'm trying to work smarter not harder. I knew there had to be a smarter solution than doing all of that work. So I started on a quest to find the ultimate sight word solution.

And once again it lead me to Whole Brain Teaching and the SuperSpeed 100 and 1000. So great!

I posted about SpeedSpeed Math, and here is SuperSpeed Letter & Phonics (for K-1st), SuperSpeed 100 (for K-2nd), and SuperSpeed 1000 (for students who pass SuperSpeed 100)!

How it works:
Students work in pairs, working together, going back and forth each saying a word on their paper, attempting to get as far as they can in one minute.

You will assign students their partners (one should be a little bit better than the other) and assign them a level you want them to start on (there are 100 levels in SuperSpeed 100).

The first week of school I plan on testing my students on how many SuperSpeed 100 words they can say in one minute. Based on those notes, I'll assign partners and what level they will start on. 

Levels... so there are 100 levels to SuperSpeed 100 (each level a new word is introduced and the other words are reviewed). Here is an example of levels 47-50. 
{The words in blue are the new words added}
Lets say two students start at level 47 and get all the to the 13th word in level 49 in one minute. Then next time they will start on the first word in level 49. However far they get, they will just start at the BEGINNING of that level the next time. And they would have scored a personal best record {since they got to a new level} so they would record it on their personal best recording sheet. Not too hard right?

I love how when students master the SuperSpeed 100 then they just move right to SuperSpeed 1000 which is pretty similar and gives more of a challenge.

I will say this does require a lot of copies for all the levels but they can be reused and it is a once a year commitment.. no need to continuously make the copies.

All of the SuperSpeeds contain a personal best record sheet that students put a check when they beat a personal record. I want students to keep better records than just using a check mark so I created this personal best record sheet:
Click the picture to download your copy
Students will keep these in a folder with their personal best records kept in the prongs and their SuperSpeed papers will go in the front pocket. Plus a label on the outside so students know which folder is which!

Once you understand how it works, it is easy to understand but it took me reading the directions a few times before it really clicked. 

If it doesn't quite make sense you can read more in-depth directions on Whole Brain Teachings website here. Download all of the SuperSpeed levels here for free!! Or watch this you tube video to help you visualize how it is played:

I still haven't figured out exactly when I'm going to do SuperSpeed but it might pop up a few times a week in the middle of a Daily 5 rotation. I haven't decided if it will be a daily practice like I plan on doing with SuperSpeed math. I think it depends on my students needs. If they are weak with sight words then we will be doing it more often however if they are all on SuperSpeed 1000 then we might just do it a few times a week. Also when you have a free 5 minutes this would be the perfect thing to fill it with! Easy, fun, and kids love it!

How do you teach your students sight words? Do you find incorporating sight words a balancing act as well? Since I'll be doing the Daily 5 students won't have a center or workstation to practice sight words; word work will be used to practice spelling words & vocabulary words. I think this is a great solution since the entire class does it at the same time and it doesn't take up much time!

Last but not least...
Graphics and Fonts by LetteringDelights.com
I'm headed to Busch Gardens to enjoy some roller coasters, animals, and fireworks! I wish you a safe and relaxing Independence Day!

ps. Who is going to be my 50th follower? I can't believe I'll be at 50 followers soon! Ya'll are AMAZING! :)


  1. I can't wait to try SuperSpeed with my kiddos.


  2. Hi!! I awarded you the One Lovely Blog award and the Versatile Blogger award!! Stop by and check it out!!


  3. Thanks for sharing this! Looks managable and practical!

    Success in Second Grade

  4. I was #50 :) This looks like a neat idea, thanks for sharing!

    Jennifer @ Herding Kats In Kindergarten

  5. Great blog, I'm your newest follower. Please check out my blog if you have time. Calling Plays in the 2nd grade.


    1. Thank you! I will definitely check out yours, would love to get more 2nd grade ideas :)

  6. I love your blog and I am a new follower! Thank you for sharing!

  7. Thank you so very much for sharing this. Sight words is a place I would like to get better at next year, and this is exactly what I needed. I already love WBT, and am so glad you reminded me about this. You have some GREAT ideas, and I am definitely going to follow you to learn more! Yay for second grade!!! :)

    Reaching for the TOP!

  8. I'm new follower #60! Great to find another 2nd grade blog! I love SuperSpeed 100!
    Primary Pizzazz

  9. Hi Amber! You will be amazed at the results you get by using the SuperSpeeds! Don't forget the math one also! My students do it every day! You will even find them pulling the folder out during free time to practice independently. I also send a second set home to do for part of homework. It only takes 1 minute for reading and 1 for math! On Friday, they bring the folder back to show me their progress. Parents initial on the word or math problem where the child stopped each time. I use this activity as part of the Universal Homework Model (WBT Video Library Archives). I love your recording Sheet! Thanks!! I look forward to following your experiences!

    Mrs. Stoltenberg's Second Grade Class

    1. Thank you for this comment! It so nice hearing from others who have used SuperSpeeds before. I am definitely also doing math! Thats a great idea on how you do their homework. It was so nice hearing from you :)

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