Sight Words

We have carefully crafted the language in
our stories based on our knowledge of
how children learn to read.

Research has shown that it’s important for
children to develop a stock of sight words.

Sight words (also called high frequency words) are
the most frequently occurring words in books (e.g.,
the, is, look). Children come to recognize these words
on sight when they have the opportunity to see them
again and again in print.

“Word recognition is an essential component in
the mastery of reading, and considerable evidence
suggests that the major difficulty confronting the
beginning reader is the development of rapid,
automatic word recognition skills.”

  • – Spencer and Hay (1998)

The Riverdale Readers stories have a high
ratio of the sight words that children
need to know.

Percentage of Sight Words in Rooster Tales

The sight words used in the Riverdale Readers stories are taken from the Dolch Word List. This list comprises 220 of the most frequently used words in children’s books.

* The words with asterisks are taken from a list of the 95 most common nouns that appear in E.W. Dolch’s survey of children’s books. The Dolch list is commonly used in schools and literacy programs.

Over 60% of the words used in each
Riverdale Readers book are sight words.

See chart below for complete list of sight words

This is a sample of the text from our Level 5
book, Rooster to the Rescue, with the sight
words highlighted to demonstrate how
frequently they are used:

The little pig was stuck in a hole.

“Oh, no!” said Rooster,

I see a fox”

While taking a scientific approach to the language in
our series, we have also focused on making the stories
appealing and accessible to the first-time reader. The
sight words are woven into natural, conversational
language that we hear in everyday life to make the
reading experience relevant for kids.

This chart lists the specific sight words used in each Riverdale Readers title. To calculate the ratio, we counted all of the sight words in each book, including repetitions, and noted the percentage in relation to the total word count.

Level 1
The Pesky Rooster
Level 2
Cockadoodledoo!
Level 3
Rooster Shows Off
Level 4
Rooster on the Run
Level 5
Rooster to the Rescue
house*
in
is
the
tree*
water*
cow*
is
pig*
run
sheep*
the
up
at
can
fly
got
help
horse*
I
look
me
no
not
on
ride
said
the
up
was
and
apple*
at
away
come
corn*
farmer*
for
he
here
horse*
I
in
look
no
on
ran
said
see
the
too
up
was
a
and
at
away
come
for
got
he
help
here
horse*
I
in
little
look
no
pig*
pull
ran
said
see
so
the
was
67% 73% 77% 81% 73%
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