I created these as a center for my students during our unit on R-Controlled vowels. These are perfect for independent center work or small group instruction. You could also use these as a whole-group activity.
Students cut out the letters at the bottom of the page. Then they try to make as many words as they can. They sort these words based on how many letters are in the word as well as by phonics patters in the words. Students are challenged to find the mystery word -- the word that is created using ALL of the letters.
I love that this is a naturally differentiated activity. My higher students are motivated to find the larger word, while my on-level and approaching students benefit from the hands-on practice with our phonics and spelling skills.
This file includes 6 student pages. Mystery words include:
I also included an answer key. These keys DO NOT include all word possibilities (there were just too many to list), but just some of the words that I was able to create.