Teaching Word Families with Roll, Build and Write Mats

If you are teaching word families to your students or children, you will love these hands-on and fun CVC word family roll, build and write mats!

Teaching word families is fun and easy with these CVC word family roll, build and write mats.

My son was recently working on word families and I wanted to come up with a more fun, hands-on way for him to understand and remember word families. I thought about the name learning mats I made a while back and figured I could adapt the idea and make word family mats.

My son really enjoyed this so much more than flashcards or repetitive reading. He liked that this was more like a game. Speaking of games, these CVC word family board games are super fun too!

CVC word family activity for kindergarten.

These games and activities fit my son’s personality so much better than drilling him. If you have kids that prefer to play and be hands-on in their learning, these will be great for you!

Teaching Word Families with Roll, Build and Write Mats

I showed my son how to use the mats and then he was able to do them totally independently.

CVC word family activity for kindergarten students. A fun literacy center activity or reading center activity.

To start, I gave him the two cubes and showed him that if he rolled them, they would make a word when placed side by side.

Then I showed him how he could use the alphabet magnets to build the word in the middle spot on the mat.

Finally I gave him a dry-erase marker and showed him how he could write the word on the lines provided.

Literacy center activity to learn word families and CVC words.

He enjoyed it and told me it was so much better than just reading the words over and over again.

Setting up the CVC Word Family Activity

Supplies Needed:

  • Word family roll, build and write mats (link to download at bottom of post)
  • Foam cubes
  • Permanent marker
  • Alphabet magnets or alphabet beads
  • Write and wipe sleeves
  • Dry-erase markers
  1. Print out the word family roll, build and write mat.
  2. Write word family endings on each side of one foam cube. I decided to put the same word family on every side of a cube, so that we don’t have any nonsense words. For example, I wrote “at” on every side of one cube and “an” on every side of another cube and so on for all of the word families I wanted to work on currently.
  3. Then on other cubes I wrote letters that could go in front of that word family and make a word. So on the other cube I wrote “c” on one side, “b” on one side, “m” on one side and so on. Then when the word family cube and the beginning sound cube get rolled at the same time, they will make a word that makes sense. In this example it would be “cat” “bat” and “mat” and so on.
  4. I like to keep the two coordinating cubes in a small plastic bag or container together. That way these two cubes stay together and I don’t have to try to figure out which beginning sounds cubes go with which word ending cubes.
  5. Slide the mat into a write and wipe sleeve so that your kids can easily do this over and over again and only need to erase the word they wrote. You can try laminating them, but in my experience dry-erase won’t work and you will need to use wet erase markers.
  6. Make sure to get the alphabet magnets or beads out and place them nearby.

Check out these other fun literacy activities for kids!

Printable Alphabet Letters and Ways to Use Them

Building Sight Words Activity

Sight Word Pockets Activity

LEGO Duplo Sight Word Towers


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