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Wednesday, April 17, 2024

7 Engaging Ways to Practice CVC Words

If you teach kindergarten or first grade, I'm willing to bet you spend a lot of time working on CVC words. We all know how important it is for our kiddos to master CVC words, but do you ever feel like the teaching process can get a little monotonous? If you're raising your hand, this post is for YOU! Today I'm sharing 7 engaging ways to practice CVC words and keep your literacy lessons feeling fresh! 

Make practicing CVC words easy and fun with these exciting activities your students will love.

Why Do CVC Words Matter?

Learning CVC words will be the key to your student's overall success in reading for years to come.
So what's the deal with CVC words anyway? CVC words are one-syllable, three-letter words that use a consonant, vowel, consonant format. CVC words help children learn to break words apart into segments and understand that words have a beginning, middle, and end. This simple pattern is easy for students to decode and helps build confidence with phonics development. 

Now, why are they so important? Well, first off, they help to improve blending skills which ultimately leads to fluency. CVC words allow children to practice decoding words that use a combination of vowels and consonants. When students learn these patterns, they can begin to read more fluently - this is the end goal, right?! Not to mention, these simple words stack beautifully with sight words your students are practicing, allowing them to read short sentences and learn new vocabulary. All of these benefits are put together to make CVC words a concept worth teaching in depth to support our young, budding readers!

Finding Fun Ways to Practice CVC Words 

Now that we've reviewed what CVC words are and why they're important, let's chat about how to find fun ways to practice CVC words. We all know that topics that require repetition and constant practice are the biggest targets for getting a bit boring over time. If you're not careful to vary your teaching techniques and activities, your kiddos start to tune out. But you already know this! That's exactly why you're here, right? On that note - let's jump into 7 engaging ideas for practicing CVC words that will WOW your students! 

1. Blending Slides 

If you're looking for a way to help students learn to blend letters together to form CVC words in a way that makes sense, you're going to LOVE this first idea. These CVC Word Blending Slides use a hands-on learning format that kiddos absolutely adore! 

This blending slides activity is a great way to get students excited to practice CVC words this year.
To use, each student will get a metal cookie sheet, a blending mat, and a set of magnetic letters. You'll pull a card and they will name the picture on the card. Then, they will identify the letters in the word by segmenting the sounds. Next, they grab a magnetic letter for each sound and place it on the mat. Then, they read the sounds and blend them together to form the word. I remind students to do this with one big breath to help them naturally connect the sounds. 

I love using this visual for teaching new CVC words and modeling blending for my students. They catch on to the idea of blending so quickly with this activity, and actually enjoy practicing this skill on their own! You can prep this activity once and use it for years to come in your small groups or intervention classes. It's the perfect support for a structured phonics program that also aligns with the science of reading! 

2. Real and Nonsense Word Sort 

As your students are beginning to learn CVC words, have them try this real and nonsense words game.
The sound of laughter in the classroom is music to my ears. When students are actually learning and having fun at the same time, I consider it to be a personal victory as a teacher! If you're looking to claim this win in your classroom, I know you'll love this Real and Nonsense Word Sort. 

In this activity, students will pull a card, read it aloud, and determine if it is a real word or a nonsense word. As children read and come across a nonsense word, you'll hear the giggles explode! I love watching them segment, blend, and then ponder on the word. It's like you can see those wheels turning as they work through each card! 

This resource covers all short vowels, using words with a CVC pattern. You can introduce this game in small groups and then reuse it during centers. I like to pair kiddos up and have them sort words into the correct category using a pocket chart. 

3. CVC Word Inference Riddles 

Your students will love reading these fun CVC words inference riddles in small groups or with partners.
Have you ever tried using riddles to practice CVC words with your students? If not, I think you'll love these Inference Task Cards! In my room, I was always a big fan of wordplay and riddles because they make students perk up and listen. There's something about a rhyme or riddle that's just so appealing! 

These task cards are great for whole-group learning or your morning meeting. They're great for warm-ups as they really get those wheels turning! 

To use, you'll read the clues aloud and have students guess the CVC word that the riddle represents. After they give you the correct answer, have them say the sounds for each letter and spell the word aloud to take it a step further! Unfold the tab and your students will love this self checking feature. This is a fun activity that won't even seem like learning to your students. 

4. CVC Word Worksheets 

Incorporate worksheets like these in your CVC words activities for low prep options you and your students will love.
I know, I know - worksheets don't sound like a particularly engaging activity, but hear me out! These CVC Word Worksheets engage your students with multiple steps. First, they'll identify the picture and say the word aloud. Then, they tap for each sound and color in a circle for each sound. Next, they segment those sounds in sequence and write each letter individually. Last, they write the whole word as one. 

This activity provides an excellent visual for students to help them understand breaking apart words into sounds and then blending them together. I love using this activity as a follow-up when we learn new words. Plus, since it's low-prep, it's easy to sneak into just about any time block of the day. If you need a last-minute center or a meaningful time-filler, this activity will come to your rescue! 

5. CVC Word Stamp or Build 

Next up, this is another low-prep option that uses elements of hands-on learning to practice CVC words. These CVC Word Stamp or Build Pages will be a huge hit in your classroom. 

Get in some fine motor skills practice with these CVC words stamp or build activities.
There are two options included in this resource, one for stamps and one for magnetic letters/letter tiles. I loved having both of these options to continue practicing CVC words in new ways. 

To use the stamp version, kiddos will draw a card, say the word, and break apart the sounds. Then they stamp each letter in the box on their paper and finally blend them together to say the word once more. 

The magnetic letter version is the same except they place letters on the mat as they go. These are great to introduce in small groups, and then use again during centers. 

Once kiddos know how to use these pages, they can be fully independent as they practice! That means these pages can be used as centers throughout the school year.

6. Seasonal CVC Blending Mats 

Use these seasonal CVC words blending worksheets throughout the year to keep students engaged and excited about practicing CVC words.
There's something about seasonal and holiday resources that just make learning more fun, right? I think this is true for both students and teachers, which is why I was always mindful to include them in my lesson plans. I loved using these Spring Themed CVC Blending Mats during small groups. 

To use, students will identify the picture, and then lay down magnetic letters for each sound. Then, they will blend the sounds together and say the word again. There are also recording sheets included for students to write the final word. 

The mats come in two versions, with and without letters to support and differentiate as needed. I liked to laminate these mats and use them every year. I have also included black-and-white options for quick, no-prep practice as well. My kids loved the seasonal themes so much that I actually made a huge bundle of these resources so that we could use seasonal practice all year long! 

7. CVC Word Park and Spell

I've saved a student favorite for practicing CVC words for last! This CVC Word Park and Spell is going to be a huge hit for your students who love cars! 

This park and spell CVC words activity is not only a great way to get students excited to practice spelling CVC words, but will make it feel more like a game than practice.
In this activity, they will get to match up magnetic letters with their blending mat and then "drive" a car across the mat, from left to right, as they blend the letters together. If you've got reluctant readers, this is the activity for them!

I love saving this activity for use on a fun Friday. By the end of the week, everyone needs a little extra motivation to stay engaged. 

This activity will make it fun and easy to continue practicing CVC words and finish the week strong! Best of all, simply laminate these mats and then use them again and again all year long and for years to come. 

Even More Ways to Practice CVC Words 

Well, there you have it friends! Which of these 7 engaging ways to practice CVC words was your favorite? Hopefully, you found something fun and new to try in your classroom. Over the years I've found that variety really is key to keep learning fun and engaging! You can find all of these activities and many more to practice CVC words in my TPT Shop. Have fun with your students!

Save These Ideas to Practice CVC Words

Pin this post on your classroom Pinterest board to keep these ideas top of mind! 

Looking for fun and exciting ways to get your students excited about practicing CVC words this year? Grab these engaging activities to use in your classrooms as individual practice, small group work, or as a center activity. Your students will love the varying activities and will never get bored while practicing CVC words. #tarynsuniquelearning #cvcwords #cvcwordpractice #cvcwordactivities #cvcpractice

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