Teaching children word families is a phonemic awareness technique that helps children see patterns in reading. This is an important skill because it allows children to begin “reading” by grouping sets of letters within a word. To put it simply, word families (sometimes called “chunks”) are groups of words that rhyme. The first part of a word is called the onset and the last part of the word is conveniently called the rime. Word families share a similar “rime” as the onset changes.
This fun game is perfect for children who already know their letter names, letter sounds, and are starting to put sounds together to form words (probably around ages 4.5-5). Obviously, this is not a game that I have tried out with either of my kids…but I plan to pass it along to my nephew who will start kindergarten in the fall. I currently only have two sets of word families, but plan to add more so be sure to check back!
|1. Download and print the documents I created here. Laminate if you’d like.|
|3. Write the letters for the beginning of the pictures on the two different blocks.|
|4. Arrange the pictures above the word family mat.|
|5. Let your child roll the block on the mat and then find the corresponding picture.|
|Continue with the other word family group!|
|Store in a Ziploc bag!|