My Time With Sight Words: A Love Story AND A Giveaway

(FYI- Before we get started here today, I wanted to let you know that this post ends with a giveaway so totally keep reading. Are you loving all these August giveaways or what?!)

Friends, I’m not sure I’ve shared this with you before, but I love word study. LOVE IT. I love the games, I love the teaching, I love the centers, I love seeing the transfer into reading and writing….nerdy nerd love. And what’s even worse, I love the organizing of word study. The Ziplock bags for centers, the lists of sight words and spelling patterns, the charting of concepts they’ve mastered, the grouping of friends…I mean, we’re talking chills here, people.

Think I’m crazy yet?

I have been called the Word Study Guru in my day and considered having a T-shirt made. Yes, I was that proud of the title.

Anyhow, I was recently sent two sets of interesting books, geared mainly for parents to use at home with their friends, but I wanted to share these little gems with all of us today. Use them in your classroom, suggest them to parents….whatever! I think it will be easy for you (those of you who teach the small fries, specifically) to find a use for these.

I can practically hear you screaming, “Just get to the point already, woman!”

I can take a hint.

I’m talking about Bob Books sight word book packages for kindegarten and first grade (although I think one could start to use these whenever their child is ready). Here’s a peak at the boxes:

In each box, there are 10 books, 30 flash cards and a brief set of tips for parents. The set of books aims to teach 30 different sight words, incorporating three specific sight words into each book. The flash cards have the word on one side and then use that word in a sentence with a picture on the back. (I totally heart that part!). Plus you can get activities to go with the books by clicking here.

Slightly reminiscent of the Dick and Jane books from my childhood, these books are each about 12 pages. What I liked is the simple text mainly made up of easily decoded words (and sight words….duh), combined with simple pictures that also provide strong context clues. I mean, hello fab opportunity to practice the good old “look at the picture…what makes sense?” strategy.

Check out a sample page:

 Perhaps my fave feature is that each book comes with a tip for parents. An example:

(Ahem. And I quote…)

“This is a good opportunity to talk about words that describe things (adjectives) – small, long, big, good, pretty, flat. Help your child think of more adjectives.”.

Not only does the tip fit the subsequent story, it makes sense when combined with the particular sight words being tackled in each text. Plus, I am digging the huge hint to parents that you should only work on a limited number of new sight words at a time. I mean, how many times have I had to kindly suggest that perhaps it is a bad idea to introduce your child to 25 new words in one sitting and then expect them to master each and every word becuase our society constantly teaches us that more is better, push your child, do, learn, read…read dammit! Maybe it’s just me, but those conditions don’t seen conducive to fostering a love of books. Call me crazy.

Bob Books has a pretty rad website too. Click around to check out the resources for parents – they have some great additional advice on reading with children, stuff like rewards charts and ideas for how to make reading the books more fun. While I was clicking around, I learned that Bob Books is a family business that was originally started by a teacher. Clearly, I was all, “you go, sister friend!”. We’re talking girlfriend used to write, copy, and collate these puppies out of her home, asking her husband to do the illustrations. Get this- they originally packaged them in sandwich bags!!

Kind of gives you a warm fuzzy feeling, doesn’t it?

The books grew in popularity and I kind of want to high five someone or do some Charlies Angels bad ass karate kicks- the idea of a teacher making it happen like that gets me pretty pumped up!

Sooooooooo……on to the giveaway part! Bob Books has graciously donated a set of sight word books for kindergarten as well as a set for first grade. Ha-cha-cha! These sets sell for $16.99 each, but they can be ALL YOURS if you take a moment and….well, here are the deets.

How To Enter:
* Leave a comment on this post. Maybe something about your love for word study or another nerdy passion of yours.
* Become a fan of Mrs. Mimi on Facebook, then send me an email (meemerdo at hotmail dot com) letting me know you’ve joined the crowd. The email part is required friends…how else am I gonna know?)
* Sign up to follow moi on Twitter. If you already follow me, tweet about the giveaway but don’t forget to include @MrsMimiTeaches, so I see it too.

Then I’ll put all your entries into chronological order, assign you a number and use a random number generator to pick the winner. You get a set of books and I get to give stuff away AND make a bunch of lists!!!! Whee!

Enter once, twice, three times but no being a cheater pants and leaving four hojillion comments. So, only one entry per method, sound fair?

Big hugs and good luck! The contest starts today and runs through Saturday, August 21st.  I’ll announce the winner on my blog on Sunday the 22nd, so keep those eyes peeled!!


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  • FABULOUS! My kiddos have loved BOB and I bet my students will, too. Thanks for the opportunity!

    August 9, 2010 at 5:01 pm
  • What a wonderful set of books. Thanks for the heads up. Debbie

    August 9, 2010 at 5:01 pm
  • My brother totally used those. He just started college. 8]

    I love words. Love words. I'm an elementary school librarian so I LOVE WORDS. If by some chance I won these would then be regifted in some sort of fabulous way. Though to a student or teacher–that would be a hard decision!

    August 9, 2010 at 6:28 pm
  • I will use them in my classroom AND with my kindergarten son. Love your blog!

    August 9, 2010 at 7:03 pm
  • I taught kindergarten summer school this summer for struggling readers. One of my friends from the regular school year was in the class and brought in some BOB books on the last day. It was really amazing to see him pick up a book (that I hadn't coached him on) and hear him read it all the way through. He was so proud of himself that he wanted to read it in front of the whole class! I, of course, was beaming! I think these are a great resource for any K or 1 teacher / parent! 🙂

    August 9, 2010 at 7:03 pm
  • I love the Bob Books. (And word study too!)

    August 9, 2010 at 9:05 pm
  • I would love a set of BOB books. These were great to have in school and my little one at home has just started reading sight words! Perfect for both! Thanks for the giveaway!

    August 9, 2010 at 9:05 pm
  • One of my very favorite resources! Who knew they had a website! Thanks for the tip!

    August 9, 2010 at 9:05 pm
  • Just mentioning this… have you by any chance seen that you can now buy personalized Sharpies? Like with your name printed RIGHT ON THEM. Amazing.

    August 9, 2010 at 10:45 pm
  • Lovely! I would love to win these. Here's my comment for my entry.

    August 9, 2010 at 10:45 pm
  • I have a funny BOB books story. Last year I volunteered to help a Kindergarten teacher do her literacy groups. We each met with a small group of friends who were relatively close together in their reading journey. One day I had run out of leveled readers (the teacher wanted us to use them) that didn't stink and I found an ancient set of BOB books on a dusty shelf. Score!

    My little friends were just lovely and they were excited to do something a little newish. We opened up the first book I had chosen (cute story, illustrations that totally illustrated the story, etc.), and NO ONE WOULD EVEN TRY. The type is a little smaller than on newer readers, so I thought maybe all 6 of them needed glasses or something. Nope. The problem was the lack of color! In their little brains line drawings did not count as book art. Had they been my regular students we would have expanded this little episode into lots of learning other than reading, but I only saw them twice a week and it just didn't happen. 🙁

    Anyway, if you don't win the contest and you happen to do Scholastic books in your class, the BOB books are often on deep discount through the book order web site. I have no clue why, but it's a good deal.

    August 9, 2010 at 11:02 pm
  • I'm so glad everyone is pumped about the Bob Books! Thanks for the heads up on the discount, Patti!

    Keep on entering!

    August 9, 2010 at 11:04 pm
  • I love BOB books and use them with my 5-year-old! They were recommended by his 4K teacher, and have been great. Thanks for the tip about the website!

    August 9, 2010 at 11:45 pm
  • My grandchildren would love these!!

    August 9, 2010 at 11:45 pm
  • I would love these books for my first grade class!

    August 9, 2010 at 11:45 pm
  • Yay! Yours is the 3rd blog that is giving these away. I hope I win 3 sets! 😉

    August 10, 2010 at 1:32 am
  • Thanks for the giveaway! And I just said today (for the millionth time) NO MORE BOOKS OF ANY KIND!!! But I can make an exception…;)

    August 10, 2010 at 1:32 am
  • I love sight word books that students can read and succeed relatively quickly. Even if they look like "easy" books, having success is so important!

    August 10, 2010 at 1:32 am
  • I enjoy words too. I also enjoy helping new readers take off reading after the switch turns on to words. They are so excited.

    August 10, 2010 at 2:21 am
  • These sound wonderful! I'm 2nd grade but have plenty of kids at the K-1 level. I am definitely going to look into these books!

    August 10, 2010 at 10:18 am
  • As a new reading teacher, these would be a great edition to my bag of tricks!

    Thanks for sharing!

    August 10, 2010 at 9:49 pm
  • I got about half a set of BOB books donated by a former homeschooling mom, but the K-1 set would be great!

    And Alicia, they still apply to 2nd graders…especially those low readers!

    August 10, 2010 at 10:38 pm
  • I start student teaching first grade next Tuesday – these would be great! I'm looking for great stuff to begin adding to my teacher collection.

    August 11, 2010 at 1:17 am
  • This would be perfect for my more advanced preschoolers!

    August 11, 2010 at 2:25 am
  • My kinders NEED these books!

    August 11, 2010 at 2:25 am
  • When I was a full-time graduate student last year, I volunteered as a reader in the SMART program (Start Making A Reader Today) in our local elementary school. The younger students I read with loved the BOB books! They couldn't wait to show off their reading skills each week. These are a great resource for a primary classroom.

    August 11, 2010 at 10:16 pm
  • I love BOB Books!
    My BOB Books story…Last year about November I pulled out the two sets of BOB Books that I bought from the public library book sale. They were library bound (solid mustard yellow cover with a lovely stripe of kelly green book binding tape down the spine), so needless to say they were not particulary attractive at first glance. The kids opened them up and started reading. The were excited to find that all the sentences started with a capital and had ending marks. They also commented that the stories were good and had a beginning, middle and end, but they were concerned about the illustrations. My little lovelies assumed that this was student writting that I had done a bang up job binding into a little class book. They were entrigued to find out that these were actual books. It gave them new confidence as writers and they all made their own BOB Books for quite some time in the writing center, which I did bind (slightly more attractively) into a little class BOB Book!
    Love em for emerging readers AND writers!

    August 13, 2010 at 1:22 pm
  • Wow! I'd love to get my hands on some BOB Books to use with my twin daughters. I'm constantly labeling things around our house and trying to get them in front of as much print as possible (can you say obsessive?!?!?), but I had not heard of these before! Great books!

    August 13, 2010 at 6:05 pm
  • BOB books are helpful in so many ways. I like the sense of accomplishment and vistory it gives a child when they can fluently read a whole set!

    August 18, 2010 at 6:38 pm
  • I would love a set–my kindergartners are ELL's and need a LOT of support for all literacy activities–these would be perfect!

    August 19, 2010 at 3:53 am
  • I would love to have these books!

    August 19, 2010 at 3:53 am
  • My daughter is starting kindergarten and is just starting to learn sight words. Her favorite word right now is look!

    August 21, 2010 at 12:52 am
  • I am definitely in need of great word study books. I teach first grade and this is my first year teaching. I need all the supplies I can get my hands on!

    August 21, 2010 at 12:52 am
  • I can't believe I almost missed this give away! I am trying to get into word studies — I will be teaching 2nd grade for the first time EVER this year (after teaching 3rd), and I know the kids will need it. I just spent a ridiculous amount of money on alphabet stamps for word work. My FAVORITE stamp set I bought has the sign language symbol for the letter next to the alphabet letter, so the kids can stamp out a word, and then sign it! I'm so excited! 🙂

    August 23, 2010 at 6:12 pm

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