Are you looking for a fun activity to help kids sound out words? My preschooler loved these!
Over the past year, I’ve been doing a lot of pre-reading activities with my Four (almost five).
He’s ready to learn to sound out words.
I created this activity without an expectation that my son would be ready for it. Imagine my surprise when it was just the thing he needed to get sounding out to “click!” Woo hoo!
To play, simply print the word building mat and a set of cards and pictures. Each page in the download has five pictures and five beginning letters or blends for a particular word family.
Help your child read the name of the word family. “Aaaad. Ad.” Next, he puts it in the red box (see above).
Have your child choose a letter, put it in the left box, and read the new word. “Ssss…ad. Sssaaad. Sad.”
Finally, he finds the picture that goes with the word and places it on the bottom sign.
When done, your child can place the letter and picture in two piles above the mat. Then he starts over with a new word.
When you’re done with one word family, try another one.
My son did really well with the short a and short o word families. When I pulled out the short i word families, he quickly became frustrated. We put the activity aside for the day, but I’m looking forward to trying it again when he’s ready.
Tips for preparing and using this printable
- Laminate for durability. (This is our favorite home laminator.)
- After you laminate each page, cut apart the letter cards and pictures. Bind each set together with a rubber band, and store all the sets in a quart or gallon size freezer bag.
- Depending on your child’s ability, do just a few sets at a time. If you sense frustration, be careful not to push too hard. Stop early if necessary.
- Start with the easiest word families. In my experience, kids learn word families best in this order: short a, short o, short i, short e, and short u.
- When your child can build the words on the mat quite easily, set the mat and pictures aside. Pull out a word family set and build a word, such as “cat.” Quickly place a new letter card at the beginning of the word ending. How quickly can your child read bat, hat, and mat?
- Try some of my other early reading printables to help your child grasp “sounding it out.” Browse my free printables page or purchase bundle packs pictured at the end of this post.
Get your free word building cards!
BUILD A STRONG PHONICS FOUNDATION!
Word Slider Cards
Word slider cards are a great tool for helping kids blend sounds together to make words. This bundle includes over 300 printable short vowel word slider cards.
Hello! Layne here from the Philippines, I don’t usually leave comments but I just couldn’t help it, would just to let you know how thankful I am with all your resources. The thought and creativity you have brought with your work just helps us a lot and inspires me too! Thank you thank you!
Thank you so much for your comment, Layne!
Thank you so much for all of these amazing resources! I wish I had found this blog two years ago when I was first starting to teach my daughter 🙂
Thank you for sharing this resources.It’s colorful and my twins nephew and niece will motivate to read because of this.God Bless you!
You’re very welcome, Marilyn!
Trust me, these teaching aids and your dedication inspire me so much and everyday I’m entering my class with variety of flashcards which really help my kids to improve in English. Thank you.
You’re welcome, Dharshini!
Thank you so much for sharing these wonderful resources with the world! I work with Deaf and Hard of Hearing oral students that are sometimes struggling to hear all of the sounds or maybe hearing sounds for the first time. Your resources are engaging and fun and I am totally addicted to your site. Can’t wait to use the new things I just downloaded with my students. Your work is greatly appreciated!
I’m SO happy to hear that you can use my resources, Sheena! Thanks so much for this encouraging comment!
I am so excited to use this with my class! I have been using your resources for the past three years and they are all such high quality and save me so much time. Not only are your resources clear and easy to use, but my students ALWAYS love them. I can’t thank you enough for all of the work you have put into this!
Thank you so much for your kind comment, Beth! It really brightened my day!
Thank you Anna for all the resources. I live all the way in Kenya, Africa and have two young children, and I also run a kindergarten; you have been of great help; much appreciated. Thank you again.
You’re very welcome, Diane! I hope you find many helpful resources on my site!
Thank you for sharing…
You’re welcome, Izah!
Hi Anna really all your work and your activities during this year that I have used were very nice and amazing you are a successful person thanks a lot and we are waiting for your new year activities 2017 Happy new year Anna
Thank you so much, Nesreen! Happy new year to you too. 🙂
You’re welcome, Verna!
I cannot say Thank you enough for your amazing work!
Thank you, Tammy!
THANK YOU so very much for your great ideas. I have to pay for what I find online so it’s nice to find high quality activities that are free every once and awhile. My kindergartners appreciate you and the fun that they have while playing with these activities!
You’re very welcome, Cory – thank you so much for the comment! I’m so glad to hear your kindergartners are having fun with my activities.
THANK YOU SO MUCH, YOUR KINDNESS IS APPRECIATED. THESE ARE TO HELP MY GRANDSON BECOME A BETTER READER AND HE LOVES ALL THE ACTIVITIES YOU HAVE GIVEN US ACCESS TO!
I’m so glad your grandson enjoys these, Jeni!
Fabulous! Thanks for your dedication and sharing your hard work!
You’re welcome, Mary!
I sincerely thank you for all your lovely resources. They are wonderful.
God bless you and all your work.
You’re very welcome, Gina!
Wow these resources are fantastic 🙂 Thanks a lot!!
You’re so welcome, Cynthia!
Once again, this is a wonderful resource! Thank you, Anna, for all that you do in making our lives easier. Your website is fantastic.
Thank you SO much, Liz!
Anna, this is fantastic! I have a four-and-a-half year old boy that will soon enjoy this activity. It is just the perfect thing for him. Thank you very much. Your website is gold for me, and I appreciate all of your quality materials.
Yay – I’m so glad you can use these, Ginette!
I have just subscribed to your fantastic newsletter while looking for Kindergarten teaching resources and you really have some helpful and valuable resources! Have just finished a Bachelor of Special Education & Disabilities and have been casual teaching in Sydney , Australia for a few months now and loving it and finding websites like yours really makes the job a little easier, so thank you very much 🙂
I’m so glad you’re part of our group, Cathie, and I hope you keep finding useful resources!
Thank-you so much for the many wonderful resources you have given to our family. Our son is Autistic and has been thoroughly enjoying your word building and many other sorting activities. Keep up the great job. We share your work with all our friends. God Bless your family
I’m so happy to hear that my resources can help your son, Stephanie! Thank you so much for your comment. 🙂
Wow! This is an amazing resource. Thank you for creating these resources. From my family to you, we are grateful for all your hard work and dedication to creating resources. Thanks again
Thank you so much for your kind words, and I hope you get to use these! They’ve worked really well for us.