Free Short A Word Family Activity For Kinders

Your kindergarten students will love our FREE short A word family activity. Download and print in color or black & white! Perfect for Kindergarten and first grade they are an engaging way to explore ad- at-ag-and ap word families. Easy to prepare and great for literacy centers or early finishers. Click through and grab your set today

Today we have a FREE printable word family activity for you to download and use with your students.  This easy CVC activity features four of the short A word families.  It is super easy to put together and makes an easy literacy center to help your kids practice phonological awareness.

This Activity Pairs Well With

We have made the activity in color and black and white, so you can choose which works best for you. There are four different word family mats featuring the AD, AG, AP, and AT families. students will explore these families by placing different constants in front to see if they can create a real word. The printable includes a worksheet, so the students can record the words they find.

Before we look at the activity, let us talk about word families. What are they? Why are they important?

AT word family mat

What Are Word Families?

Word families are groups of words with a common base. The word is changed by adding different prefixes (letters/words added before) and suffixes ((letters/words added after) the base.  In Kindergarten, we keep these to simple words, and usually change the beginning letter. For example, bat, fat, pat, cat and sat are all part of the AT word family. The common base is the AT sound to which we add different letters.

Short a Activity pin

Why are Word Families Important?

Word families help young readers recognize word patterns as they learn to read. This helps them to begin to understand patterns and sounds. For example, if we know how to read the word “Pad,” we can simply switch the first letter sound to “H” and now we can read the word “Had,” too! Then we can go on to sad and mad. This ability to transfer sounds from word to word opens all kinds of language possibilities for young readers. It also builds their confidence and fluency as readers, so that they can experience success. 

Of course, word families and the sounds they make are all a part of phonemic awareness. Click here to learn more about phonemic awareness and why it is important.

AD word mat

Free Short A Word Family Activity For Kinders

Ready to put this together? 

  • Print out the word family mats onto cardstock and laminate for durability. 
  • Print the worksheets.
  • Gather some letters to use with the activity. You can use magnetic letters, letter tiles, or cut out the letters we provide. 

You will need the consonants shown in the last sheet of the printable g,b,h,l,p,c,f,s and m

Short A actvity mats

Using The Short A Word Family Mats

This rhyming activity is very easy to use. Each student will need one of the word family mats, the recording worksheet, and the letters.

Ap activity mat

Point to the ending sound in the right-hand column of the table. Ask the students to say the sound aloud. It is easy to see that the ending sound stays the same in each cell.  Point to each one in turn and ask them to say the sound each time. We need help our students recognize and connect the word patterns.

Invite the students to place one letter in front of each ending sound to create 5 new CVC (consonant-vowel-consonant)words. Say each word as they create it. Some of the words will be nonsense. For example, you could make the word, “gat.” Have a chuckle over these and then replace the letter g with a different letter until you make five real words.

short a activity pin

We have provided a worksheet to give students the chance to write out the words. This is another opportunity for them to fix the word pattern in their brain. Finally, students are challenged to choose one of the words they found and create a sentence. They could say the sentence aloud or write it on the back of the worksheet.

You could also try making up rhymes. The cat with a hat danced right across the mat.

Short A worksheet

Looking For More Short Vowel Activities?

Short a word family
At Simply Kinder we work together to bring you ready-to-use resources to partner with great teaching for any curriculum, a Facebook community where teachers talk all things Kindergarten, and low-prep learning ideas that your students will love. Be sure to stay up to date with all things kindergarten on InstagramFacebookPinterest, and through email. Simply Kinder: where teaching Kinder is definitely better together!

With Unmatched Printables & Engaging Classroom Ideas, Simply Kinder is your TRUSTED TEAMMATE.


Get our emails loaded with free resources, teaching ideas, and so much more! 



You might also like...

HEre's your freebie!

Here's a coupon code for your next purchase!

CODE: 123456

You might also like: