Visual Closure Sight Word Cards


File size: 4 MB



This pack of 500 brain-based visual closure cards will help students quickly and automatically identify the first 500 words from the Fry sight word lists. On each sight word flash card, one of the letters (sometimes two letters in longer words) has been removed and replaced with a “blank” space. The student will look at the card and use his or her knowledge of the visible letters to identify the sight word. The student’s brain will work on “filling in” the missing letters, since only part of the word is shown to the student. By practicing sight words with these cards, the student is using visual closure skills and working on not having to make his or her eyes process each and every letter in order to recognize the word by sight. Building up and working on visual closure skills can help a student’s automaticity when it comes to sight word identification!

What is visual closure?
Visual closure is our ability to recognize a symbol, form, object, or word even when it is only partially visible. In other words, having visual closure skills means that even if you can only see part of something, your brain can fill in the rest.

Visual closure skills allow you to quickly make sense of what you are seeing. Having visual closure skills helps students read more fluently. Specifically, it allows readers to quickly recognize words by their shapes or general arrangements of letters without the reader having to spend too much time, energy, or attention on each individual letter. This is especially helpful when identifying sight words!

How do I use this resource?
Simply print, cut, and laminate (if you wish) the visual closure cards. You can choose to print and use only the set of words you need, or print and cut all of the sight word cards to use for differentiation. I recommend printing the flash cards on cardstock for durability. (I printed each set of 100 sight words on a different color of cardstock paper for easy organization.)

If you wish to use the visual closure sight word cards for word work or sight word spelling purposes, laminate the cards so that students can use dry-erase markers for an instant write-on/wipe-off resource! Students can use the markers to write in the missing letters for each sight word. Laminating the cards makes for an easy phonics center, station, or activity. These cards can also be used in a reading intervention setting.

What is included in the download?

  • visual closure explanation page
  • clickable table of contents page
  • directions for use
  • ideas for use list
  • organizational tips & tricks page
  • title page for each section of the word cards
  • five sight word checklist sheets (first 100 words, second 100 words, etc.)
  • 500 visual closure sight word cards
  • 4×6 photo box labels for easy organization and set-up (storage boxes not included)
  • mini title cards if you wish to put the cards on a binder ring

Please Note:
Some cards, such as words with only two letters (example: at, in, of) and a few three-letter words, are NOT partially hidden or missing any letters! Removing a letter from these words would cause too much confusion for the student because of the wide variety of words that could be made. For example, removing the second letter of “in” (i_) would not be obvious enough that the sight word is “in”. It also could be “it”, “if”, and “is”. Therefore, the entire word is shown and simply used as a flash card.

Can I see a few examples of the visual closure sight word cards first?
Of course! Like most of my resources, I’ve included some sample pages in the preview file that you can print and try out with your students. By downloading the free preview file, you can read all about this sight word resource. You can also print two pages of word cards from Fry’s second 100 word list to try out with your students!

When and where do these cards fit into my daily schedule?
Use these cards after your students have practiced sight words with traditional cards and within context. These cards can be quickly used at the small group table, at the beginning or end of a guided reading lesson, during your phonics or reading lesson, or even in the hallway while your class is waiting to go to a special class or the restroom.

My district does not use the Fry sight word lists. Can I still use this resource?
Yes, yes, yes! Regardless of the “list” or “program” your sight words come from, these 500 sight words ARE words that your students WILL need to be able to read and be exposed to for fluent reading. Most of the words on the Fry list will overlap with other word lists that you may use (Dolch, for example). Nevertheless, the more sight words your students know, the bigger their sight word vocabulary will be. The bigger their sight word vocabulary is, the faster they will retrieve the words while they read. Strong sight word skills lead to better fluency and comprehension skills in growing readers.

I hope you LOVE these sight word visual closure cards. Simply print, cut, and laminate for an instant brain-based sight word identification activity! If you have any other questions about this resource, please do not hesitate to contact me at

Christina DeCarbo-Wagers
Copyright 2018
All Rights Reserved


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