Beginning and Basic Words for Young Children

Most children are exposed to phonics when learning to read. Phonics teaches kids about the different sounds in the English language and shows them the different spellings associated with each sound. In order to read simple books, though, your child should learn some beginning terms and basic sight words.

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How Can I Teach My Child Beginning Words?

Phonics helps children sound out words. However, using phonics means that children can only read simple words that are phonetic. In order to improve his or her skills and even read beginning texts, your child may practice sight words that can't be easily sounded out, like 'the,' 'is' and 'you,' along with other common words.

Your child can use flashcards to learn basic words. Carry the cards with you so your child drill with them in the car or during down time. You can also make sight word games so your child has fun and doesn't feel like he or she is studying.

Reading beginning books is the best way to find out what words your child needs to know. To create weekly word lists, read a book and pick out the words that appear often but your child doesn't know or can't sound out.

Beginning Word List for Children

Ate (yet)

- Verb

1. Past tense of 'eat.'

Funny (fuhn-ee)

- Adjective

1. Causing amusement or laughter.

2. Peculiar.

- Noun

1. A humorous remark.

Good (good)

- Adjective

1. Satisfactory or high in quality.

- Adverb

1. Well.

- Interjection

1. Used as an expression of approval.

- Noun

1. Worth or benefit.

2. Possessions or articles of trade.

House (hous)

- Adjective

1. Pertaining to or suitable for a house.

- Noun

1. A building that serves as a residence for people or a family.

- Verb

1. To harbor or give shelter to.

Little (lit-l)

- Adjective

1. Small in size, number, amount or duration.

- Adverb

1. In a small amount or degree.

- Noun

1. A small amount or short distance or time.

Make (meyk)

- Noun

1. Brand or style of construction.

2. Output.

- Verb

1. To cause to happen, exist or occur.

New (noo)

- Adjective

1. Of recent origin or appearing for the first time.

- Adverb

1. Recently or lately.

Pretty (prit-ee)

- Adjective

1. Pleasing to the eye, ear or mind.

- Adverb

1. Moderately or quite.

- Noun

1. Dainty or attractive person or thing.


1. To improve the appearance of.

Said (sed)

- Adjective

1. Aforementioned.

- Verb

1. Past tense of 'say.'

Water (wot-er)

- Noun

1. Odorless, tasteless liquid.

- Verb

1. To sprinkle, moisten or supply with water for nourishment.

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