When I started out making this phonics activity I had only planned on it being just one game, but as I got stuck into it I kind of got carried away and ended up with three different ways to use it!

A phonics matching busy bag

You will need: Cork or card

  • Paint
  • Paintbrush
  • Pen
  • Clips
  1. Cut your cork or card to your desired size and paint it.
  2. While it is drying write the letters on to each clip.
  3. Once your board has dried write the letters around the outside of it.

This busy bag is to help younger children match their letters.  For slightly older children you could put capital letters on either the board or clips so that they could match the small letters to the capitals.

Spelling Match

You will need: Record cards

  • Pens
  • Clips
  1. On the record cards write out the words e.g. cat, hat, dog, frog, bin, win etc
  2. Write the letters onto the clips (you may need to make two sets of clips)

This activity is similar to the busy bag, but instead of matching the alphabet, they are matching the letters to specific words.

Sounding out spellings

You will need: Cork or card

  • Paint
  • Paintbrush
  • Pen
  • Clips
  1. Cut out a small piece of cork or card and paint it.
  2. While it is drying, write the letters on to the clips, again you may need more than one set.

I used this activity in two different ways; for my youngest charge I put out the clips that had the letters on that she knew and told her to clip on certain ones when I asked her to find that letter.  For my eldest charge, again I put out certain letters, but this time I would say a word up e.g. hat, and he had to find the letters that made up that word.  He really was proud as punch when he got it right.  This activity is one that can be easily adapted to children of various ages, for even older children you could put out all the letters and get them to practice words that they have coming up in spelling tests.



Youngest charge picking out the correct phonics


Proud of her work


They maybe tricky, but she is certainly working on her fine motor skills

Sounding out his word, and trying to choose the correct letter


He was pleased as punch when he got it right


Finding the last sound

All these activities may help development of:

  • Fine motor skills
  • Letter and sound recognition
  • Confidence in spellings