Your child will read the small words within a bigger compound word in order to read the whole word.
Learning Area(s): Reading and Writing
- one or two sheets of 8½” x 11” paper
- marker or crayon
- word list (choose from Tips)
Before the activity, select a word list and decide if you will prepare 4 or 8 words for your child to read. You will need one piece of paper for 4 words and two sheets for 8 words. Each word on the lists is a compound word. (HINT: A compound word, like cupcake or thunderstorm, is made up of two smaller words.) Next, you will make word cards with doors for each word you will use.
Follow these steps:
- Fold a sheet of paper in half and then in half again to make four rectangles. (Repeat with the second sheet of paper if you are making 8 word cards.)
- Unfold the paper and cut or tear along the folds to make four individual word cards.
- Position one word card sideways with the longest sides on the top and bottom. Fold in half (like a book).
- Print the word across the middle so that the first small word lands on the left side and the second lands on the right. All letters should be equally spaced.
- To make a door, fold the left side of the paper in half by pulling it to the middle fold. Do the same for the right side. Draw doorknobs at the center.
Repeat for each word you plan to use in the activity.
To begin, explain to your child using one of the word cards as an example by saying, “Here’s a fun way to practice reading big, compound words. Behind the doors on this card is a big word. The big, compound word is made from two small words that you might know. You will open one door at a time to look for a word you know that can help you read the compound word.” Ask your child to open the left door to show the word. Ask, “Do you know this word?” If your child does not know the word or says another word, encourage them to sound out the letters.
Continue to the word behind the door on the right. It is okay if your child doesn’t know the smaller words that make up the bigger compound word. Again, help your child as needed with sounding out the word. Then they can open both doors and read the bigger word.
Praise your child for reading a big word. Repeat the routine with each word.
- If your child has difficulty sounding out the small words that make up the bigger words in word list 1, they may need more practice with letter sounds or blending sounds to read words. You can try one of these activities: Change a Letter, Vowels First, Hop and Slide.
- You can create your own list of words based on reading and language work your child has recently done at school or for homework.
- Watch a letter sounds video to practice making the sounds together.
- You might like to choose from one of these word lists that increase in difficulty. List 1 is the easiest and list 3 is the most challenging. The slashes indicate where to split the compound word (do not write the slash).
|word list 1
||word list 2
||word list 3