It has been the number one, most asked request from my readers, and finally, I took the time to get it done for you! I present . . .The Editable . . . Incredible . . . Ball Word Sight Word Mastery System! That’s right folks! I said “EDITABLE.”
The second most asked question I get from users of Ball Words is, ‘how do you organize all your ball word supplies and rings?”
If you’re thinking about ball words as a way to build enthusiasm for sight word mastery in your own classroom, go ahead and click on the picture below. If you have specific questions, please don’t hesitate to contact me. I’m always happy to help if I can.
If you already are a ball word user, I’d love to hear your success stories so, leave me a comment and let me know who your year went. I also want to let you know, that there is also now a companion set of hands-on Ball Words Building Sets if you are interested in including hands-on practice in your literacy stations. Students use materials from your classroom to build their ball words.
These hands-on activities make it so fun to practice words and build fine motor at the same time. There are so many ways to practice in each set. Just click on the picture below to see more.
Heather Shelton says
I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE top bananas, ball words, and speed readers!!! I just finished my 2nd year using Marsha’s stuff and have seen amazing growth in my kids. My district requires students to learn 42 words, using Ball Words my kiddos are exposed to over 220 words and their reading levels have grown. The kids are excited to work together to learn them and beg to be assessed so they can go to the next set. Thank you Marsha for all you do to share your amazing ideas!!
Betsy Hedberg says
THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU!!!!!
Holly Joy says
Hey, thanks for the shout-out, pal! 🙂 It made my day to see your mention of my circle punch idea. Thanks for sharing! Anything to make a teacher’s life a little easier, right?
Marsha McGuire says
It’s a great tip! I had to share it!
Jennifer N says
We started the ball word system this year in our kindergarten classes. It was a great success, but I look forward to even better progress in year two. Thank you so much for the organizing idea. I have that drawer cart and now the labels.
Love the entire system, but more importantly, so do the children!
Marsha McGuire says
Yes! I love hearing this Jennifer! I look forward to hearing how year two goes!
Amy Gramm says
This is my first full year using the ball words. My students and I LOVE them!! I made a bulletin board in the hallway where they put their paper ball with their name on it when they pass a level and they get so excited to hang them up. We have some kind of celebration after everyone passes a set ie, baseball party, basketball party, extra recess, root beer floats, etc and of course popsicles after the beach ball words. We are going bowling on Friday since 19 out of 20 of my first grade students have passed all 20 ball word sets (the 1 is being held back). My kids are so excited and so am I! Thank you so much! Love them!
Marsha McGuire says
I love hearing these success stories. Thanks for sharing Amy!
Marsha, I was wondering when do your students use the activities that go with the ball words? During centers? Or free time? How many of the I spy bottles do you have per ball set? I can’t tell you how excited I am to use this in my classroom!
Marsha McGuire says
Traci, I use the other activities during daily 5 word work. I only have one each of the bottles. They either share them or choose a different activity. So glad that you can use these!
I have purchased all of your ball word sets to teach with my son. He is only four and has just mastered the last set (beach balls) this weekend! He was highly motivated by these. I have already bought the Speed Readers and we will start those today. Any chance that the customers that have already purchased can get the editbale set as a free update? I would love to add some of my own words.
Marsha McGuire says
All you have to do is go back into Tpt and re download them and they are yours. I merely updated the files so as long as you purchased them from Tpt, you can get the update for free!
Wow, that’s great. Thanks for the awesome prodcuts and ideas.
I love YOUR IDEA!!! Thank you so very much for making it an editable file! my teammate and I are hot on this idea for our first graders next year! It is JUST what we were looking for! Sorry for the caps, I’m just SO EXCITED!
Marsha McGuire says
I am really interested in this product! I have a few questions for you.
Do you ever explicitly teach any of these words whole group, or do students just all start with the first list and move at their own pace by practicing on their own?
I am struggling with how to move towards this system, only because when I teach my sight words each week (we do 3 per week), we practice using that word in sentences as whole class, learn a fun song to help remember it, and look for any special phonics chunks to help the children figure the word out more easily. I worry that without this explicit teaching, students will lose some of the value that goes along with it. Any tips for me?
Lastly, how do you assess the students to see if they have mastered that set of words? Do you have assessments that you created that are included in the product?
Sorry for all the questions! I am seriously considering this amazing product, I just want to make sure I understand it in it’s entirety first! 🙂 Thank you so much for your help!
Sarah Parker-Walker says
I can’t wait to start this system with my Kinders! I have been printing, laminating and cutting a little bit everyday. I dyed my rice yesterday. My 3 year old in loving all the goodies and started the top bananas. You are so amazing! I can’t wait for the new school year!
Diane Daniel says
My students and I love your ball system! They were constantly going to the cards or asking when they would be able to work on them! We have a certain word list that the children must master and I appreciate that you have made the system editable.Thanks so much for all your wonderful work, not only on this, but everything!
I’m curious as to how you incorporate your own word lists into this system. I am excited to start using the ball words this year, but I also have words that go along with our Reading Street curriculum that I must implement. I’m trying to figure out the best way to add them into this system (which type of ball each word should be on). Any ideas would be greatly appreciated!
Ball words are editable, so you can put any words that you want on them. So if you have your own words from your series, you can definitely put those on the first lists. I wouldn’t use more than 20 words to a list or it gets to large. Then you move on from there. If you have any other questions, please feel free to contact me.
Shari Copeland says
I saw your ball words in an email announcement from Tpt and thought, cute but mine work okay. After reading your blog and seing everything you do I have moved them to my cart. I especially love the idea of having a party after the whole class passes a list. This would really encourage kids to help each other. And the piñatas were so cute! I work in a school with a high Hispanic population so I’m sure I could find a parent to make them or someone to buy them from cheap. Love your blog! Thanks for sharing these fabulous ideas!
I’m curious as well how you introduce each set of words to your students. Do you do it whole group at all or only during guided reading? Right now my team introduces 1-2 words a week during whole group, so I’m wondering how I would introduce these to students. You say they practice on their own, but how do they know and practice the words if they haven’t been introduced to them whole group (or have they? 🙂 ) The whole program is super cute and looks wonderful, but I’m just curious how it’s initially implemented. Thanks!!
Theresa Leland says
I have purchased a paper cutter for the circles. Do you use 3 ml or 5 ml thermal laminating sheets? I use 5 ml, with balls printed on card stock but the cutter can not cut through it all. Any recommendations?
I would think the cards would be sturdy enough, using 5 ml laminating sheets and regular copy paper. I haven’t started laminating mine yet, but that’s what I plan on using.
I use 3 mil and it works just fine.
Lee Ann Rasey says
Just wondering, how do you deal with the students who will know a sight word one day and then can’t remember it the next day? Do you give them credit for knowing the word(s)? There always are those that are inconsistent.
I absolutely love the sight word program you created!!! This is a path I am leaning towards for my students. My question is on the whole group side of sight word instruction. If you are differentiating for all, how do you introduce words in whole group? Do you teach them in order or does it matter?
For the first couple of weeks I will introduce a couple of sight words a week whole group, but very quickly, you will find it needs to be done small group. Your students are all at different levels and it’s kind of a waste of time for students who already know a word to be ‘introduced’ to it. Hope this helps.
Renee Piers says
I love this program! Especially as a new teacher. Regarding cutting them out, I bought the 3 in. hole punch for the cards. Is there a certain size punch that you use to cut out the sight word balls used in the bottles? I think my parent volunteers would form a picket line if I asked them to hand cut those little guys. Thank you for such an awesome product!
You know, I’m not sure what size punch would work for those. I always just conned a parent into doing them for me because I only have one bottle per level. Now the big balls I have several copies. Sorry I don’t have the answer.
Hi! I love this set and I’m getting it going in my room. My question for you is how do you do the parties if you have that one kiddo who just can’t get past Top Bananas or Baseball Words? I hate to make the rest of the class wait the whole year. Thoughts?
Sometimes you have to scaffold their learning so they can find some success as well. Can you give them more time? Have them learn a few at a time? Or something like that?
I purchased your ball word bundle toward the end of last school year and I used them to motivate my students who struggled with sight words. My students loved them. I’m excited to start this year using them! I was wondering if you had a parent letter to send home to explain the system. Thanks!
Yes there is. Just follow this link HERE. and you should be able to get it.