DIY Word Family Sliders

Teaching students to identify “chunks” in words is an important step in learning to read.  Identifying these “chunks” helps to build fluency as the student will not have to stop and blend each individual sound.  Word families are groups of words that share the same ending.  For example, the words: can, Dan, fan, man, pan, ran, tan, and van all belong to the “-an” word family.   Learning these “chunks” and patterns within words also helps students spell when writing words.  Word Sliders and Word Wheels are helpful when introducing word families.  Try this little freebie when teaching word families in your classroom.

To assemble the word family sliders you will need:

  • 6  8 1/2x 11 full sheet labels (Avery 48165)
  • 18 Glidden 3×5 paint sample cards (if you want to color coordinate your pictures, I listed the paint sample colors on the last page of the pdf)


  • 4 sheets of cardstock.

1.  Print pages 1-6 of the attached pdf on the full sheet labels and pages 7-10 on cardstock.

Click HERE to download the pdf of the cards and letter strips

2.  Cut word cards along the dotted line and cut out the letter strips

3.  Peel the backing from the word cards and place over color coordinating paint sample.


4.  With an Exacto knife, cut a line on the dotted lines on the cards.

cut slitsrev

5.  Weave the corresponding letter strips though the slits.  The colors of the strips should match the card and the word family is typed toward the bottom.


When you assemble this activity, you will have 18 Word Family Sliders to use during your small group intervention!




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  1. Sharon says

    These are fantastic, thanks so much. I printed and laminated both cards and letter lists rather than print on label and card and these are equally effective. Thanks again.

  2. Francis says

    These are great! My 6 yo is loving them and my 3 yo twins are sliding them trying to read as well. Adding the Glidden color cards may a big difference. THANKS

  3. Rebekah says

    Thank you so much for these. I downloaded them a couple months ago and my daughter has been working with them. She loves them and is willing to do them without being asked.

  4. says

    I have been using your word family sliders with my kids in our homeschool. My husband was home yesterday when we were working with your sliders and he said they were neat and that he would have liked to have had them to use when he was in school just because they looked like fun :) The kids are enjoying them too :) Thank you for sharing these!

  5. says

    You are an amazing person!Thank you for being so generous. I visit this site everyday since I found it.It has made my lessons fun and the kids are motivated more than ever

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