In the last post on Phonics, we have seen how to teach blends(blending of two letter sounds together,click here if you missed that post!) and today we are going to see the next step after blending, i.e CVC words/Word families.
In blends we do ONLY two types of blends(CV & VC) to start with. I have explained in the last post, why this step is crucial in teaching the concept of ‘Blending’ before we teach them to read 3-letter words or CVC words. So, once the child had enough time to practice the Consonant-Vowel & Vowel-Consonant Blends,we start with CVC Words. Some teachers and Parents do Word Families, basically they are same as CVC words(Consonant-vowel-Consonant words) but in groups/families like all the -at words together (cat,fat,bat,hat,rat,sat etc.), then move on to the next one. In this method, we do all the word families having the same vowel first, and then change the vowel and do other word families. This is how some teachers prefer to simplify their teaching and making it easier for students to remember. I like both ways, teaching randomly and also teaching using word families. You must find out what suits your child and work accordingly! So to make the learning and teaching process easier for you all parents and teachers, I have compiled a list of Activities that are easy to set-up, does not require printing, and each activity can be done in multiple ways, to use for learning CVC Words/Word Families.
  1. Matching Words : As shown in the picture below, a simple Read & Match Activity can be done. You can use any Craft paper or Regular Pen and Paper or any Notebook, to write this activity. It hardly takes 15 seconds of your time to create this activity. Start with three words, when they are in the first week of learning these words, then move onto 5/7/9/15 words at a time. It becomes easy for the child to read and recognize the words. Then start mixing the words using different Vowels. This gives an interesting twist to the Activity. 
  2. Matching Words with Magnetic Letters : This is a hands-on activity to do, when you want a little change in the Matching Activity. The activity remains the same but it uses easy, DIY Cards and some Magnetic Letters. Sharing the link to buy Magnetic letters on Amazon here!. You can buy a Big set (like the montessori one) or if you want to go cheap, buy 2-3 sets of these regular plastic ones, they get the job done eventually. :; 
  3. Making Words with Stickers : This activity is for Sticker lovers, I mean, who doesn’t like stickers. This simple, easy to set-up, activity can be used in many ways to learn CVC Words. Look-Read-Make Words, as shown in the picture below. Another activity that you can do with stickers is you can say the sounds and ask the child to find that sticker and make up the CVC words. Or you can dictate the letter sounds, and ask the child to make the word, and then blend the sounds together to find out what word that was. This will help enhance the practice of blending and reading the words. 
  4. Fill in the blanks – Only for Vowels (C A T) : This is yet another simple and easy to setup activity, which focuses more on the sounds of Vowels. This activity will help the child to understand the use of vowels in the words. Vowels are extremely important in the English Language,as there are no words in the English Language that don’t contain Vowels. So, understanding the importance of using vowels is crucial at this stage, when the child is learning to read words. The activity is very simple, just write a few CVC words, on a page, and keep the vowels spaces blank. Let the child come up with which vowel to use in the words, without any prompting from your side. This will help the child to understand if the vowels used will make a meaningful word or will make a non-sense word. Please do not correct the child, in exploring this concept. Let the child make both meaningful and non-sense words, this will only help in improving their knowledge about the consonant and vowel relation. It is very important to understand this to be able to read the English language.
  5. Word Family Activity : As mentioned in the introduction of this post, CVC words can be grouped together based on their ending-vc blend. This makes the Word Family. These words can be practiced one Family at a time. Start with vowel ‘a’ and then do all the families for the vowel ‘a’. And then you can move onto the next vowel. In this way, you can practice One word family at a time. For example, Vowel ‘a’ has these word families -ad, -ag, -am, -an, ap, -at etc. Likewise we have different word families for different Vowels. 
  6. Find the -at words in a sentence : This is the next level of activity once you have had a lot of practice in reading the CVC words/word families. Give the child minimum 3 to 5 sentences at once, and ask the child to highlight/underline/circle/mark the words belonging to a particular family. As in the example below, the child has to highlight the words that come in the -at word family. So  make a few different activity pages like this one, and ask the child to look for -a particular word family in a bunch of sentences. 
  7. Making words using Magnetic letters & Read them :  This activity is the reverse of the first and the second activity in this list. This is an open-ended work for the child. Just give them Magnetic Letters and ask them to , and build a few CVC words, write/record them down in a piece of paper or in a notebook, and then ask the child to read those words for practicing blending. Only 5 words at a time. It can be Non-Sense words too. To make it even more fun, you can ask the child to use a Timer and come up with as many words as possible in that stipulated time. Fun, isn’t it??? 
  8. Revise Word Families by Mazes : Ah, all children love to be little detectives and solve challenges and mazes. You can incorporate the same fun alongwith learning a few words everyday. Just make a few mazes as shown in the pictures, and use your own creativity to make it easier or difficult as per your child’s interest. 
  9. Sort the Word cards in the correct Word family : Download this freebie below in the post and print out the activity sheets. Ask the child to color the words as told in the printable, and then cut and sort the words into the correct category.
  10. Give them the vowels and ask them to fill the consonants and read the words using Magnetic Letters and Worksheets : This activity is also a reverse activity of number 4 listed in the post here. Here we provide the child with Vowels and ask the child to come up with different Consonants in the Initial and Final Position of the CVC Words. This is a fun game, and most of the words children come up with will be non-sense words, and in the process they will understand the meaningful words. Let them explore this activity without correcting them and let them record/write all the words they come up with. These words become/provide a visual to the child to learn the difference between the words that make sense and words which don’t. Then you can extend the activity to sort the meaningful words from the words that don’t make sense.Now Your Turn, I hope you found this post helpful and you will make these easy activities for your children who are learning to read! Tell me in the comments, which activity/activities you liked the best!! Waiting to hear from you!

Download the freebie here : Sort the Word cards – Freebie