How to Use High Frequency Words HFW

High Frequency Words (HFW) are those words we see ALL the time. These high frequency words are used in our everyday reading and writing. The words on high frequency lists are in order of how often these words occur or are seen and used in our daily reading. 

There are many list out on the internet or lists provided by your district that shows us which words are MOST important and which words to focus on. If you look at all the HFW lists out there, most of them are the same. Some lists are just in different order, but that's ok! Any High Frequency Words list that your school provides will do for the activities below. 

High Frequency Words are GREAT words to focus on in the classroom or at home with students in elementary grades up to 5th grade. High Frequency Words guide us as educators and the students about which words to focus on, which words are MOST import, and which words to learn for each grade level. 

If you are using these words in your classroom or at home, keep scrolling down to read about how to use high frequency words more often for your students in the classroom or for your children at home. 

How to Use High Frequency Words:
  • Use HFW lists as a guide to see what level your students are reading. Students should be scoring 90% or better on each set of 100 words before advancing on to the next set of 100 words. Each 100 words should advance grade levels. For example, kindergarten uses words 1-100, first grade will use the words 1-200, and second grade will use the words 1-300, and so on. Knowing the percentage of words your students knows, will help you assess where your student's reading levels are approaching.  
  • Use the words on the HFW list for the words on your spelling lists too! Students should not only be reading these words, but they should be spelling them as well. When students are writing, they will be using these words in their every day writing assignments. Have you seen how many contractions and homophones there on the these lists? For example; there, their, they're and two, to, too. If the students are reading these high frequency words, then they should be spelling them too.  
  • Do your students know when to use these words correctly in a sentence? Students need to know the meaning of each word and how to use them in sentences. Writing these words in sentences will ensure they understand the meaning of the words. These HFW list are great to use as vocabulary words. Here is an older blog post about using Vocabulary Words in the classroom.
  • Word Walls are important in the classroom and at home. Teachers should post words that students need to know or words they misspell often on a wall somewhere in the classroom or in a notebook the student can refer to. Use the HFW to post on a  wall for all students to see and to refer to them as guidance. Most word walls will need to be removed during standardized testing.  If you're at home, post these words to know on the refrigerator and study them often. 
  • Individual tracking sheets are great for students to keep track of the words they are misspelling or misreading. Use a notebook or a sticky note to keep track of words students need to know. If individuals are tracking their own words, each list will be different for each student. 
Here is a FREE list of high frequency words 1-100. Don't forget about my challenge. I challenge every 3rd grader (and adult) to get 100% of the list of the first 100 words. This list of 100 should be mastered by 2nd grade. Just click on the picture below to be taken to the FREE list. You will be taken to my Teachers Pay Teachers store and you will be able to download it from there. If you would like to download this copy from my blog...please scroll to the bottom of this post. 
I give you a challenge! I challenge all 3rd grade students to read AND spell these first 100 High Frequency Words. To tell you the truth, all 3rd graders (and adults) should get 100% on both reading and spelling the first 100 high frequency words. If the average 9 year old cannot get 100% on both reading and spelling the first 100 high frequency words, please start investing in these words to know!

I have created a few HFW resources to use in your classroom that may be helpful. These resources can be used with students in a 1st-3rd grade classroom or for children at home. Each link below will take you to my Teachers Pay Teachers store

The resource below is the FULL list of 1,000 words, all the way to 5th grade. Click below to be taken to my Teachers Pay Teachers store to read more about it.   

The resource below has the first 300 High Frequency Words separated into lists of 10. There are only 10 words to know on each spelling list. Each spelling list gives some activities to do with the words too. These are great spelling lists and perfect to send home for homework. This pack is loaded with words kids need to know up to 3rd grade. Click below to be taken to my Teachers Pay Teachers store read more about these spelling lists. 
 

Here are some cool resources I have used in the classroom using high frequency words. These resources will help you stick to the words you need to know. I also found a few NEW resources that you might like! Each link below will take you to AMAZON. There you will be able to view each item up close and add them to your cart.

Here are some older blog posts I wrote earlier about HFW. You'll be able to pick up a few freebies at each post too. Click on the links below to be taken to another blog post from me!

Thanks for stopping by today! Hopefully you'll be able to use your high frequency lists this year as a guide rather than a chore. Don't forget about the challenge that I asked you to do above! Best of luck with the challenge. Let me know how it goes. 
 
See you soon,
Click on the list below if you would like to download the first 100 words for free, right here on my blog instead of going through Teachers Pay Teachers. Just click the picture below to download this list for free on this blog! 

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