Kinesthetic Acitivities: Learning by Turning--Hands-on Phonics Games and Activities for Kids That Are Effective

Keep the Brain Pumped Each Day

Word Wheels

These are very popular. You can draw your own and create as you wish. Or, you can use the ones in the book

Children see a picture of an animal, such as a cat. The letters a t are printed on the wheel. The children turn the wheel to discover a new word as a new letter appears. You can also ask if there are children who know any at family words that are not on the wheel. You will begin to hear…flat, splat, brat.

This is great for word families which helps to fix the rhyming pattern in these words.

You can also make these beginning or ending digraphs and diphthongs. There is another variation where the diphthong or digraph is in the center of the wheel. Pictures of words containing digraphs or diphthongs at the beginning, middle, or end of a word are shown. Again this give additional practice in identifying these sounds.


Hands on phonics games and activities are one way to reinforce the skills you are practicing with your children.. As is stated in the video, Phonics Games & Learning Activities by Teacher Created Resources is the source for each activity/game in this article.

The efficiency of kinesthetic learning must not be overlooked. If you think of times when you learned something new, some of you may recall most vividly those experiences you have that ‘stuck. For many of you, it involved doing of some kind.

Phonics is visual and auditory brain food. When it is combined with a game or activity, it becomes an important way to wrap the brain around the mystery sounds can present. The activities here are a few that I used as a teacher. Many teachers use these or some like these daily.

Compound Words

Compound words are fun at any grade level. This activity has been made so easy for you to prepare. In the book, the words and the cute little pictures are ready for your use.

Color, laminate, cut out, and they are ready to use.

The children will view the pictures….cup+cake…they will find the word and set it beside it. You can have this set up as a game where they keep track of how many they can make in 5 minutes. Kids like challenges.

You can also have pairs of children do this. Sometimes you may with to pair a weaker child with one who will be able to assist. They both benefit from the experience.

Practice with vowels

For each vowel the letter is printed on the card and the /sound/ they are looking for is indicated. For example: the letter e and it will say: the e in egg and a picture of an egg/the second card will have an e picture of a bee.

There are picture cards provided that will produce the sound that is indicated for each card. This too can be a game but it should be set up as a game after children are becoming confident in this skill. This is great to use at your reading table when you have groups. Everything you need is at your fingertips. Whatever you use, include hands on practice in phonics some part of each day. It is fun, a change of pace, and children are learning.

Practice with long vowels sounds and the mystical e.

For this activity children view a word such a mat.

There will be a picture of a mat beside it. There is a tiny flap at the end of the card with mat. Fold the flap in and there is an e.

Children then say the word. They continue on this way for the ones you have made. It is recommended that you copy on card stock and laminate.

Another way to do this activity is to duplicate the pattern on regular paper. Give the child several to color, cut out, and read. Give children different ones so they can exchange them and take turns reading to each other.

Practice on long a with the myserious e
Practice on long a with the myserious e | Source

The Long and Short of It...

Learning long and short sounds can be overwhelming to children. The good news is using games and activities to provide practice as the sounds are introduced makes the acquisition of these sounds much easier.

The ideas shared in this hub were favorites of mine. Kids liked doing them and I was able to use it across the grade levels.

Place your long and short cards in a baggie with the other cards children will use. Or, you can use magnet tape and place them on a board where children can practice.

Children will have cards that will guide their practice.

Encourage children to say the words with you

Say the rhyme and when you get to the words

"He marched them up to the top of the hill", everyone stands.

Of course hen you get to the words

"He marched them down again", everyone sits.

And when you get to the words

"When you half way up, you're neither, up nor down,"

Everyone is sort of half stooping.

This is quick and fun and livens up your classroom.


copyright 2011-2012 pstraubie48 TM All Rights Reserved


Have a little fun as you transition or just need a little break


"The Grand Old Duke of York

He had ten thousand men.

He marched them up to the top of the hill

and he marched them down again.

And when they're up, they're up.

And when they're down, they''re down.

And, when they're only half way up

They're neither up nor down."

Have a little fun, add a little movement to the classroom, and make everyone smile. Follow the simple directions that are given and every one will be on board.

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Comments 10 comments

pstraubie48 profile image

pstraubie48 20 months ago from sunny Florida Author

We do have fun, Peggy.

Actually I am not a huge phonics advocate. I taught it because I HAD to but many kids do not learn to read that way.

Thanks for visiting Angels are on the way to you ps


Peggy W profile image

Peggy W 20 months ago from Houston, Texas

This is a great and fun way to teach children how to pronounce the vowels; consonants and also different words. They were teaching phonics when I was a youngster in school and when my brothers came along a few years later they had ceased using that method. It was someone's latest theory. Crazy! Phonics works!

Your grandson must love playing with you!!! You certainly have a great play area set up for him. Up votes, pinning to my schooling board and sharing.


pstraubie48 profile image

pstraubie48 22 months ago from sunny Florida Author

Yes, I do whatever I can to stimulate interest and make it fun.

Thank you for visiting Peachpurple

Angels are on the way to you this afternoon ps


pstraubie48 profile image

pstraubie48 22 months ago from sunny Florida Author

Even our little techie kids enjoy doing these. My little grandson loves his Nabi and all but he likes to do hands on things like this as well.

I used many of these over the years and they were always a way to keep interest high.

Thank you again for visiting and for sharing Aufait

Know that Angels are visiting you again this afternoon. ps


peachpurple profile image

peachpurple 22 months ago from Home Sweet Home

i used the phonics for my son when he was 4 years old


peachpurple profile image

peachpurple 22 months ago from Home Sweet Home

I used the phonics too when my son was five, he is good at words


Au fait profile image

Au fait 22 months ago from North Texas

You have some great suggestions here for parents who want to help their children learn or who want to homeschool their children.

I started teaching my daughter the sounds of consonants when she was only 2 years old. We made a game of it and we would practice 2-3 consonant sounds every week and I would make a point of asking her every once in a while throughout the day if she remembered what sound this or that letter made, and she would proudly tell me.

Once we had practiced a letter for a week or so we would review it regularly along with all the other letters already learned. I saved vowels for a little later since they have more than one sound and I didn't want to confuse. Yes, some consonants make more than one sound too, but vowels can be tricky.

Very helpful hub to lots of parents. Voted up and useful/interesting, pinned to my 'Education' board, and sharing with followers.


pstraubie48 profile image

pstraubie48 4 years ago from sunny Florida Author

eslinsider...the ways we can use words to bring learning to life and add interest are almost limitless, aren't they? i was so thankful for the many options i had at my disposal as i was able to find a way to help each child. thank you for stopping by...i will be over to visit soon.


eslinsider 4 years ago

The compound word activity sounds fun. You can use activities like that in classroom groups too. I made some how-to videos of games where the students are putting together sentences with words. So this activity is quite similar yet instead of a sentence they are putting together a word. Thanks.


justateacher profile image

justateacher 4 years ago from Somewhere Over The Rainbow - Near Oz...

Great ideas for teaching and reinforcing phonics..

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