My Four is a bouncy, energetic boy who literally climbs the walls (he can stretch across the hallway with his arms on one wall and his feet on the other). Yet he loves to sit and listen to his big sister read to him — and his mom, when his sister’s at kindergarten. 🙂
I’m excited that he shows a lot of interest in words and is able to sound out short vowel words with some success. We’ve done some work with word family mats (get eight free mats here), and today I created this more advanced word family file folder game for more practice. For information about why it’s important to learn to read with word families, please see my previous post.
Word Family File Folder Game
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Preparing the game was a bit tedious, but now I have a sturdy game for my Four and, some day, his younger brothers. I printed everything and then laminated it with my wonderful (and affordable!) home laminator. Then I cut out the circles (this was the tedious part). I attached velcro dots to the flower petals and word circles.
Here’s how it looked after I attached it to the file folder with clear packing tape. I put all the circles into a pile and my Four read each word, determined the word family, and attached it to the correct flower.
This was challenging for him, but there’s something about Velcro dots that makes it fun. He didn’t complain at all and enjoyed himself.
At first it sounded something like this:
Me: “What’s your next word?”
My Four (holding up cab): “Caad.”
Me: “That’s a b.”
My Four: I mean – cab. (starts attaching it to them “am” flower)
Me: “What a minute. What word family is it?”
My Four: “Oh – ab.” (correctly attaches it)
By the end he was getting better, but this was a challenging activity. The word family mats I’ve shared previously are a better place to start if your child is new to word families. On the other hand, this would be a great learning center for a kindergarten classroom or even first grade. It would also work well as a spelling center for children working at short a words.
P.S. Want to know more about teaching kids to read?
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