Sight Word Game: Showdown!!

This fun and surprisingly simple sight word game was one of my kindergarteners’ hands-down favorite ways to practice reading common words.

I hope Showdown becomes a well loved sight word game for your kids, too.  For more sight word fun, check out our best-selling Editable Sight Word Games in our shop!

Getting Ready

To play this sight word game, I grabbed a stack of blank index cards and markers. I picked 5 or 6 sight words and wrote each one on a separate index card.

Then, using a different colored marker, I wrote the same 5 or 6 words on separate index cards.

Simple prep, super fun sight word game. {Playdough to Plato}

Sight Word Game: Showdown!!

I gave my 4.5 year-old son one set of cards and asked him to spread the cards out in front of him. He pointed to each word and read them out loud. I helped him with the tricky (the) and (to).

Then, I mixed up my cards and randomly picked (the). I read it out loud but was careful not to show it to my son. He looked down at his cards, picked up (the), and held it to his chest until it was time for the big reveal. (As he was making his selection, I closed my eyes to build the excitement.)Simple prep, super fun sight word game. {Playdough to Plato}
After a couple of suspense-building seconds, I called out, “1-2-3 SHOWDOWN!!” My son laid his word down as I slapped my card next to it.

Simple prep, super fun sight word game. {Playdough to Plato}
The cards matched, so the round was complete. He picked up the word and returned it to his original pile. I resorted the cards, picked a new one and played again.

As we continued our game , there were a couple of times when my son grabbed the wrong index card so I had him look at the word I laid down, read it, spell it and then find the matching word in his pile. When he succeeded, I congratulated him and we started a new round of the sight word game.


For more sight word game fun, try out our best-selling pack of 30 Editable Sight Word Games. Type the words once and they automatically load into all 30 easy prep, fun to play activities.

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  1. Molly B.

    This game is effective because it relies on recognition, which is easier than recall. Too many educational games go straight from learning to recall, when a recognition step will make the whole thing easier. Great game. For kids with learning differences, make the list shorter. For children who keep making mistakes on the same words (or letters), play “Slap it!” Put out two cards, then say one of the words, and the child slaps the correct word as quickly as possible. It’s fun, and creates experts

    • Margie

      Dear Malia and Molly,

      Thanks for sharing your ideas! I really like your ideas and have had the same concerns about some games because they are simply too hard for some of my students with learning differences who the games are designed for.

  2. Robin

    Recognizing the print word when it’s said aloud is the reverse process of reading text… you ever change roles with him while playing this game?

    • Ashley

      Hi Robin,
      Yes! That’s great way to switch things up and practice a different skill 🙂
      Ashley // Happiness Ambassador



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Hi, I’m Malia.

I LOVE helping Pre-K, Kindergarten and First Grade teachers save time, stay inspired and give EVERY student bigger results. I’m so glad you’re here!