Vowel sounds (A, E, I, O and U) are often the most difficult for children to master. These hands-on puzzles and word cards give kids plenty of practice sounding out short CVC words and identifying the missing middle vowel sound.
They’re great to use as literacy centers, guided reading activities or word family games with new readers.
Middle Vowel Word Cards
After reviewing the vowel sounds with my students, I pulled out the stack of word cards and placed the vowel letter tiles next to it.
Note: The cards also work well with magnetic letters if you’d prefer to use them over the cards.
I grabbed a word card and placed it on the table. Each word card has two pictures that share the same initial and final sound. This one said “b__d.”
I pointed to the first picture and asked kids what it showed. “Bed!” they all called out at once.
I stretched the word out slowly as I pointed underneath each letter on the mat, “/b/ (pointing to the b) /e/ (pointing to the blank line) /d/ (pointing to the d). What letter makes that middle /e/ sound? Hmmm….” I asked.
Several hands shot up in the air. I wanted to show the kids the entire process before revealing the answer, so I grabbed the “i” first and placed it in the middle box. I sounded out the word I had built: “bid.”
Everyone agreed that didn’t match the picture, so we tried the “u” next. “Bud” wasn’t right either, so we tried :”e”. The class cheered as we stretched out the word “bed.” It was a match!
After working through two more examples as a class, I invited the children to complete the rest of the activity in pairs.
Middle Vowel Puzzles
I wanted to review vowels in words again so, later that week, I grabbed a batch of vowel puzzles.
The aim was to match the pictures that share the same initial and final sound, but have different middle vowels.
We grabbed our first card “c__t” and sounded it out: “/c/ ___ /t/.” I asked the children to help me brainstorm words that started with /c/ and ended with /t/.
Then, we searched our stash of puzzle pieces to find two words that would fit: cat and cut. We over-emphasized the middle vowel sound in each word as we slid the pieces in place.
The kids caught on to the activity quickly and were soon ready to solve the rest of the puzzles on their own.
Grab Your Copy
Ready to grab your free medial vowel activities? Click the blue download button below and then hop over and grab our jumbo pack of hands-on guided reading activities!