Here’s a simple phonics idea for beginning readers – turn paper plates into a word wheel!

Owen (age 5) was pretty impressed with this.
Paper Plate Phonics Game

I decided to do two different word families on our wheel.

To make a word wheel, you will need two paper plates, a paper fastener, scissors, and a pen or marker.

Here’s how to make one:

1.  Cut two square holes in a paper plate for the rotating letters to show through.

2.  Attach the two paper plates with a paper fastener.

3.  Write your word endings on the top plate.

4.  Turn the bottom plate and fill in letters to complete your words.

I used sat, cat, hat, bat and tan, can, ran, pan.

Paper Plate Phonics Wheel

Owen enjoys just picking up his wheel and practicing the words, which is a great thing for him to do!  I put some “hints” on the plate to help him remember the sounds – “-at sounds like cat” and “-an sounds like can.”

While you have the paper plates out, it might also be fun to make a clock – this is a great way to learn what the minute hand means.


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  1. Lisa @ Fern Creek Cottage Jul 7, 2014

    What a great idea!

  2. sarahelisabeth Jul 7, 2014

    I love this simple idea. It would be a fun idea for the summer.

  3. Kathleen Jul 8, 2014

    Love it and made it and the clock straight away, I will be making many of these for my son(5). He thinks they are a great new toy.

    1. Sarah Jul 9, 2014

      I'm glad he liked them!

  4. Crystal Sep 18, 2015

    I have seen lots of versions of the word family wheel, but this one is so sturdy! We will finally be able to toss our fine motor worries to the wind! Thank you!


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