30+ Fun Word Family Activities & Games

More than 30 Hands-On Word Family Activities

What are Word Families?

Beginning readers can benefit greatly from learning and implementing word families. Here is what I share regarding phonograms (the fancy word for word families) in my I Can Teach My Child to Read eBook:


“Another strategy that has proven to be helpful for many children is the teaching of phonograms. We often refer to these as “word families” because the onset (beginning sound of the word) can be changed to produce a family of words that all rhyme. This allows children to begin grouping sets of letters within a word to make it more easily recognizable the next time that she sees the same chunk.”

“Once your child recognizes the word “mop”, she’ll then have an advantage to reading all of the other words that have the same rime (top, pop, stop, cop, hop) because only one letter (the onset) is changing.”

Word families can be taught and incorporated in a variety of different word games and activities, which make learning fun and engaging for kindergarten and preschool learners.

30+ Word Family Activities and Games:

Our Favorites:

LEGO Word Family Buildings - word families

Word Family Activity: LEGO Buildings


word families

Word Family Game: Fishing


Word Family Pull Out Activity - word families

Word Family Activity: Pull Out Words


Word Family snowball toss square - word families

Word Family Game: Snowball Toss


word family game word families

Word Family Game



Word Family Activity: Playdough with Alphabet Stamps

More Word Family Activities & Games:

Word Family activities

Word Family Game: Word Ladders ::  No Time for Flashcards

Word Building with Magnets and Tape  ::  No Time for Flashcards


word family activities

Spin and Rhyme  ::  No Time for Flashcards

Word Family Activity: Houses Worksheet  :: No Time for Flashcards

Rhyming Jars  ::  No Time for Flashcards

Word Family Game: Spin a Word Family  ::  Playdough to Plato


word family 3

Word Family Game: Tic Tac Toe  ::  Kids Activities Blog

Word Family Blackout  ::  This Reading Mama

Word Family Activity: Learn to Read Strips  ::  Kids Activities Blog


Word families

Word Family Playdough Mats  ::  1+1+1=1

Roll & Graph Word Families  ::  1+1+1=1

DIY Building Words Center  ::  Apples & ABC’s


word family 5

The Cat in the Hat Word Family Game  ::  The Pleasantest Thing

 Word Families Flip Chart  ::  Kids Activities Blog


Word Family 6

 Word Family Garden  ::  Playdough to Plato

 Word Family Eggs  ::  Playdough to Plato

 Word Families with Bread Ties  ::  Still Playing School


Word Family 7

Paint Chip Word Families  ::  Life with Moore Babies

Word Family Slam  ::  Toddler Approved

Apples and Worms Word Family Activity  ::  J Daniel 4’s Mom

word family 8

 Keurig Cup Word Families  ::  Kathy Griffin’s Teaching Strategies

 McDonalds Fries Word Family Sorting  ::  First Grade Schoolbox

Stamp & Spell Literacy Play (with laydough, alphabet stamps, and scrabble letters)  ::  Childhood 101


Click here for more ideas for preschoolers & kindergarteners:

Is Your Child Kindergarten Ready?

33 Ways To Prepare Your Child For Kindergarten

Homeschooling Preschool

How To Teach A Child To Read

Dr. Seuss Preschool Activities

Fun Sight Word Activities For Kids

5 Pre-writing Activities For Preschoolers

 Interested in teaching your child to read? Check out our eBook!

3D Book Graphic



Hands-on Word Family Activities


  1. So many great ideas! in “30 Hands on Learning Activities,” I like how they are inexpensive or free and especially like the clips from plastic bags (with letters written on them) used to make family words by sticking them in a strip of play dough. Thank you.
    Arlene Martin

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