Onset and Rimes : Five Free Games for Teaching and Practicing the Reading of CVC Words

Here’s a great way to engage your first-graders in mastering CVC words, those foundational building blocks of early reading. CVC words, like “cat” and “bag,” feature a consonant-vowel-consonant pattern and are perfect for young learners starting their reading journey.

I’ve crafted these engaging matching games, specifically designed for short vowels and CVC words. In these activities, students match the onset (the initial sound) to the rime (the ending sound), making learning both interactive and enjoyable. It’s a fantastic way to reinforce phonemic awareness while having fun.

And best of all?? There are five sets and they’re all free.

     I’ve gotten so much use out of these since school started.  It’s such a simple concept.  Match the beginning sound to the ending sound.  The graphics are so important to beginning readers, and I tried to use common words the students would know.

      When I opened my TPT (Teachers Pay Teachers) store in September, I wanted something to offer for free to teachers that they could really use. As of today, over 260,000 of them have been downloaded.  I get such a thrill knowing kids all over the country are using a little game that I made!   

 If you’d like to download them, click here.  You need to download all the games separately

     You need to copy and laminate all the cards. I like to cut them with a paper trimmer and I cut outside the colored lines.  It looks nicer and takes less thought.


     When I set it up for the kids in school, I separate the cards, and put the onsets on the left and the rimes on the right or I use 2 mini pocket charts side by side.

     These are the mini pocket charts from Target.  I love them and I bought about 14 of them in August.  (yes, turquoise :)) They’re all over my room.


     Kids get extra practice writing the CVC words with the addition of recording sheets.  There are answer keys in each set, as well.

      I made a set for each of the five vowel sounds.

     If you’re a teacher and you’re creative, think about opening up a TPT store.  Since I opened mine in September, I’ve had a blast.  Enjoy! 

      Have fun teaching!

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