Word Families activities are a great way to practice reading skills and increase vocabulary. There are many creative word family activities out there. I always prefer to keep mine simple. This simple activity with domino tiles and free printables is a great addition to your literacy center. You can replace the Domino tiles with basically anything similar.
I have listed some alternatives that can easily replace the domino tiles.
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I teach Word Families in 3 different difficulty levels.
- CVC Word Families – Ideal for Kindergarten age
- Long Phonetic Word Families – Kindergarten-Grade 2
- Non-phonetic/Digraph Word Families – Kindergarten-Grade 2
Whether you have a kindergarten classroom, elementary or homeschool, word family activities are must-haves. This word family activity is suitable for the kindergarten age group because I have used the CVC Words level. But this same activity can be easily adapted to the other levels as well.
- Domino tiles Preferably in two colours
- Printed labels or Permanent Markers (in two colours)
- A container to hold them
- Paper and Pencil to write
★Alternatives for Domino Tiles: popsicle sticks, poker chips, cardboard, wooden blocks or anything at hand.
Make the CVC Word Families Activity
If you are using printouts,
- Print out the label.
- Paste the single letters on one colour and the letter combinations on the other colour.
If you are using a permanent marker
- Write single letters on one colour of tiles as shown in the picture.
- Write letter combinations on the other colour.
- Put them in separate containers and keep the containers on a tray
★Since I did not have domino tiles in two colours, I used two coloured markers. This is to bring the child’s attention to the common letter combination of the word family.
Once you have these ready, they can be used in many ways. It all depends on your children’s needs and their levels. Make this activity available on the shelf for the child to practice any time. Don’t forget to keep paper and pencils for the child to write down the words he builds. Here are few ways you can use this activity,
Different ways to use this activity for your literacy center
- One container for each word family – keep one ‘letter common combination tile’ and few single sound tiles. The child can practice building that particular word family over and over again. This is a perfect literacy center activity if you do “word family of the week”
- Two containers – all the single letters in one container and few letter combination tiles in the other. The child can match and make word families. These word family letters can be real words as well as nonsensical ones. Either way, it is a great way to practice building words and reading.
- Use dice instead of the single letter tiles. Die is a great way to make this activity fun.
Word Families Activities With Dice
My original idea was to use two big dice for this activity. But since I didn’t have any, I borrowed my son’s Rubik’s Cube. This activity is ideal when your child has been introduced to few word families already. Keep some paper and pencil with this activity for the child to write the words he builds. You can do this activity in 3 ways,
- Keep the ‘single letter cube’ on the table and only change the sides of the ‘suffix cube’ – this way you could get real words as well as nonsensical words. It is a fun way to practice building and reading CVC words
- Keep the ‘single letter cube’ on the table and only change the sides of the ‘single letter cube’. – this is a good way to practice one particular word family. This activity is ideal when you do “word family of the week”
- Change the sides of both ‘single letter cube’ and ‘single letter cube’. Great for children who have been introduced to more than one word family