Once our incredibly intelligent kiddos exceed fluency expectations in the traditional sight words (ie. Dolch, Fry) – where do we go next? How can we merge the two lovely worlds of academics and functional skills to continue the growth and development of these students? What is important to learn next?

After students have a strong grasp of sight words, a great next set of types of words to work on our countries, cities, and states. These words are super functional. When you read a magazine article, newspaper, map, website, etc. more than likely another location will be written. Most countries and cities don’t necessarily follow phonics rules and may not be easily decoded for our learners (umm… hello Phoenix – try and sound that one out). We want these commonly read words to be as fluent as those uber important Dolch Sight Words!

Make sets of flashcards for:


local cities, worldwide, nationwide


Once you master reading the names of the states – move onto states & capitols!


We googled and found a list of most commonly discussed countries and went this this list!


I just can’t help but grin ear to ear when a visitor stops by our classroom and hears one of my kiddos rattling off countries in the fluency stations. It’s seriously beyond impressive. Or when you are working on teaching common and proper nouns and the first proper noun your student says is Paris. Boom. Proud mama duck here 🙂

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