Teaching word families is a wonderful way to help students recognize patterns in the written language while simultaneously becoming better readers! In our room we focused on different spelling patterns each week. But of course when it comes to remembering those patterns and being proficient in reading them, every student develops differently! How do we keep students accountable for mastering word families yet allow for differentiation of development? The results of their mastery is more fluent and accurate reading. That is what we all want for our students!
Short Vowel Word Families
A great place to start is short vowels! Students can begin to recognize the patterns in the word lists while they begin reading short simple fluency phrases with those words. Another thing that I love about these books, is how they keep the learning fresh. They provide that anchor and personal connection to each pattern. Students have their very own lists to keep.
How Does It Work
Just like we track sight word mastery for our students, we can now track word family mastery! Students work their way through these short vowel booklets in order to master reading both word lists and fluency phrases for each short vowel word family. Once students read down a word list and the fluency phrases on the back the teacher can write a positive comment and/or date the box. The student gets to place a sticker, stamp, or color dot on the front cover over the mastered word family. As students work through the book they move on to the next!
The first side is the word list, the back side is the fluency phrases with those same words.
In our classrooms these books stayed in student book boxes and take home bags. Students took their booklets home to practice with a parent each night and one day a week/or more if possible, I would listen and test students. When parents volunteer to help with reading, students would always beg to be chosen and ask to level up!
Long Vowel Word Families
After students master the short vowel word families, it is time to take it up a notch! Long vowel word families can be a real reading booster! Reading takes off once students learn that they can flip the vowel sound to long or short to decode an unfamiliar word! This makes learning more difficult patterns much easier and less stressful for both teacher and student. Students can focus on one list at a time and master it at their own pace. Teacher can be sure that each student is getting what they need when they need it based on how they are mastering these booklets. It’s the perfect way to track reading mastery data.
RTI Intervention and Editable
These books can help you with RTI tracking or intervention activities for the students in your class that you are required to track more closely. Slide these books in a data binder or use them with student led learning. They are very motivating and provide excellent goal setting criteria! Each set includes and editable template so you can customize this for your students.